Camping with a dog is often stressful because of various factors, including the unpredictability and noises of creeping critters in the dead of night which can trigger your doggy to start barking. Allowing your dog to accompany you on your camping trip is beneficial for owner and pet alike and certainly provides more social and behavioral well-being for your animal than if it were left behind in kennels.
The information in this article will help simplify some aspects of camping with your dog so that both you and your dog get the most enjoyable experience while out sleeping out in your tent.
Where Does My Dog Sleep While Camping
If you’re new to camping with your dog, this is perfectly logical question to ask. Where the dog sleeps while camping will depend on the natural sleeping behavior of your pet.
Ask yourself, where does the dog sleep when at home? If your dog sleeps on your face, feet or in your bedroom then it goes without saying that your four-legged friend is going to be happiest doing exactly the same in your tent while camping. In doggy brains, the tent will be like a den. However, most tents nowadays can be quite spacious, have various compartments and even a vestibule area where you’ll do your socializing.
If your dog sleeps outside in a garage or a garden kennel, then the dog might be most comfortable in the vestibule area of your tent, there are dog specific tents which can adjoin your own tent. If you are traveling with your car, then consider having a crate or the dogs bed in your car.
Here is a tent option for camping your dog.
Coleman Dome Tent for Camping
I really like this 4-person tent from Coleman – CHECK PRICE ON AMAZON
What I really like about this tent is the ‘dark room technology’ which blocks 90% of sunlight and equally reduces heat for a more comfortable summertime camping experience.
Both are of such huge importance during summer months when the sun rises very early and the heat can be quite uncomfortable in the tent. The last thing you want is your dog to suffer in the heat so this is a really versatile tent option for camping with your dog in an official campsite or on the trail.
What To Bring When Camping With A Dog?
If you’re a dog owner, you know that camping with your pup is an adventure.
But if you want to make sure the experience is safe and enjoyable for both of you, it’s important to plan ahead. We’ve compiled this list of essential items to bring when camping with your dog so that everything goes smoothly!
You’ll need water bottles, bedding, food bowls. You’ll also want to bring poop bags and treats for rewards and more! Check out our list below for all the things you’ll need on your next trip.
Click here now for a free printable checklist of what to bring when camping with your dog!
How To Go Camping With A Dog?
Ensuring the safety and security of your pet, yourself and others while camping is a of paramount importance. From frightening encounters with other dogs or coyotes to unpredictable nighttime temperatures, there are many things that can go wrong for owners and their dogs out on the trail. But, never fear, with a little preparation, patience, and creativity you will be able to take your pup on an unforgettable camping adventure!
This simple guide will walk you step-by-step through everything but we`ll start off with some basics about what needs to be done before hitting the great outdoors:
Experiment At Home
The key to a successful camping trip with your dog is to practice at home first. This way, when you’re out in the wilderness, you’ll both be more comfortable and confident. Practicing camping with your dog at home should not be an ordeal.
Pitching your tent: How many people are needed to setup your tent? Whether it’s one or two people make sure to keep your dog distracted while you erect your tent. When you are out on the trail or in a campsite you will need to keep your dog tethered. You just never know when the dog’s innate hunting instincts will kick in and it will take off after a squirrel or other wild animal. We really like this 360 degree swivel pet tie-out from SureSwivel.
Staying in the tent overnight: If you’re hoping to camp with your dog for the first time it’s important to spend an entire night in the tent with your dog. Setup up the sleeping arrangements as you will when you are camping out for real.
Food and water: Having food and water for your dog is essential, even in your back yard. Test out the water and food bowls for your camping adventure. Dexus do a range of collapsible bowls which are perfect for your camping adventure. They fold up really neatly and are perfect for any form of camping with your dog, from car camping to backpacking and camping on trail. Here is a perfect dog travel bag for kibble food and water. It’s from Leash Boss and available from Amazon.
But one thing is for sure: having some fun practicing will make it that much easier once you hit the trail.
If you plan on camping in an official campsite do your due diligence in advance and find out if your preferred campsite will actually accept dogs. What a disaster it would be to rock up only to be turned away or, risk a fine.
Some campsites, though pet-friendly, may not allow your dog to be off leash so it’s worth knowing in advance. However, even If your dog is used to being off leash, you should still consider getting a tracker for your pet. I would recommend Cube Tracker for price point and features. This should be afford you some peace of mind that you can find your dog should something happen.
In addition, make sure your dog is micro-chipped and that there is an ID tag with your information around the dog’s neck. Specific to your camping trip it may be worth having specific campsite information with your dog.
What if My Dog Barks at Night?
Be prepared as even the best behaved dog can become skittish at night and start barking. You DO NOT want to keep your fellow campers awake and be faced with dagger looks for the remainder of your trip. Barking and all other sounds are greatly amplified at nighttime as we all know.
If your dog is new to camping make sure you practice in your garden or on a single-night test run in a campsite during the off season. Find out what soothes your dog the best but come ready with white noise apps on your phone.
Dog Foul – How To Dispose of it
If you’re a dog owner, chances are that you know what it’s like to deal with the most unpleasant side of your pet: the poop. It can be difficult enough to clean up after your pup on city streets or sidewalks, but when you’re out camping or hiking in remote areas, things can be complicated but a few easy steps and knowing the code of Leave No Trace will help guide you in your decision making.
What to do with dog poop while camping or out on the trail? Well firstly do not just leave it where it dropped and do not leave a poop bag at the side of a trail. Pushing the dog crap to the side of the trail or leaving it in-situ is not okay. A lot of the ecosystems you may visit are finely balanced. Introducing such bacteria and parasites as can be found in dog poop can up-scuttle the balance of local flora and fauna leading to the growth of invasive weeds and water contamination with algae.
Your options on campsite, on forest trails and hikes would be to collect it in biodegradable bags. On trails there may be a rule stating to bury human waste in which case you can also bury your dog’s waste. Most of the time make sure you collect in waste biodegradable bags. Carry the waste yourself for long periods just not nice and stinks no matter how much you love your four-legged friend. You should consider carrying a Poo Vault. It’ll mean you’re not carrying it in your bag or hand. It doesn’t smell and can easily be attached to the dog leash with the include carabiner clip. If your dog is used to carrying it’s own rucksack then you should let them carry it themselves.
In campsites you may be able to dispose of the poop package in designated bins or indeed flush it in the human toilets. Do ask the campsite staff on best practice at their site.
Here is your list of things to pack for your camping trip with your dog. You can download our printable packing list or make your notes from the items below:
- FOOD & WATER
- COLLAPSIBLE WATER BOWLS – CHECK THIS PRICE ON AMAZON
- I.D. TAGS + GPS TRACKER – WE RECOMMEND CUBE FROM AMAZON
- CANINE FIRST AID KIT – CHECK PRICE ON AMAZON
- DOGGY COMFORTER
- BIODEGRADABLE POOP BAGS
- DOG TOWEL
- LEASH & TIE DOWN – CHECK OUR RECOMMENDED TIE DOWN ON AMAZON
- TENT OR HAMMOCK
- DOG COAT OR HI-VIS VEST
- DOG BLANKET & BEDDING
- DOG BACKPACK
Camping With Your Dog – Conclusion
The most important thing about the camping experience with your dog is that you both have a lot of fun. Camping is all about getting away from your day to day stresses and getting out into nature. Rise with the sun, go on hikes and excursions and head to bed with the sunset. With a little planning on your part, both you and your dog can have such a good time.
If you’re bring your beloved dog camping with you, where should your dog sleep while camping? In my opinion, right beside you where your dog always is.