Taking a long hike with your dog can be a rewarding experience and deepen the relationship between owner and pet.
But like all things, a little preparation and forethought can go a long way in making sure everything turns out for the best.
Your dog's physical condition should be taken into account when planning a hike - you don't want to overtax your beloved pet and end up carrying them - and avoid taking very stony paths or steep trails.
Route planning should also take into consideration whether there are clean and safe water sources along the path for your pooch to get a drink. If not, be sure to bring enough water along for your dog, and plan out plenty of short breaks for you both to get rehydrated.
Dogs should be protected from strong sunlight if possible, and owners should keep an eye out for any electric fences along the route.
Depending on where you are going hiking, there may be paths that take you through pastures where livestock like cows or sheep might be grazing. Such paths should be avoided if possible, but if not, walk through the pastures as calmly, quickly and quietly as possible.
The world animal protection society WTG also advises getting an overview of local leash laws and to look into which local flora and fauna could be poisonous for dogs. The dog should be accustomed to wearing a secure harness before going on a hike, adds the WTG.
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