Summer is the time of the year where going on hikes and picnics is a must. And what better way to enjoy your hike other than taking your dogs along the long trails? Dogs are excellent outdoor companions and taking them on hikes can also be a great bonding exercise. Though it’s extremely fun to take your pet along it is a lot of work as well and we have to be prepared for anything that might possibly happen during those long hikes. In this blog, let’s take a look at some of the advantages and disadvantages of taking small and large dogs on hikes.
Most of the dogs of average size or bigger tend to have great stamina, thus can walk continuously for a long period of time. However, small dogs can get tired very easily and the pet owners must know when to take breaks and give them a rest. It is important for owners who own either big or small dogs to stop overworking them when they get tired.
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2) Water and Snacks
It is really important to carry plenty of water along your trails as dogs get as thirsty as humans, sometimes even more. Especially, if the breed is double coated. It is important for the dog owner to understand the breed. Since smaller dogs need more energy when climbing those rocks, a little snack along the way can give them a boost of energy. Big dogs can withstand those rocky trails however the owners should look for signs of overheating and dehydration. Give them water or soak a wet towel and wipe them in case of overheating and dehydration. Make sure your dogs are in the best condition while hiking.
3) Help them
Most of the big dogs can easily climb a mountain when compared to small dogs. Small dogs might need occasional help while hiking through rough patches, rocky terrains or shallow streams. Don’t hesitate to help them if you see them struggling over any obstacles along the way.
4) Bring a first aid kit along
Everyone should have a pet first aid kit at home, but it’s smart to have one in your pack specifically for hiking. The most common injury for dogs while hiking is cutting or damaging their pads on rocky or sharp terrain. If one of their foot pads gets cut, it is helpful to have the pack to carry them the rest of the way, or have a boot handy to put on their injured foot, if they are still able to walk. If the breed is small it is easy for the owner to carry but if they are huge it may get difficult and you might have to call for help. So until the help comes, make sure to give them the necessary first aid and do not panic as it might agitate your pet.
Most people hesitate to take their small breed dogs on hike due to their size and other people’s opinion. But they are as good a hiking partner as big dogs. They just need a little extra water, snacks and break times. Do not listen to other people’s comments, because you know your furry baby better. If you are still afraid to take your munchkin on a hike, try experimenting with small mountains or hills and move on to bigger ones.
6) Don’t forget to have fun
The summer time hiking is all about you bonding with your furry best friend. So do not let anything stop you from making that hiking trip you always wanted to go. If you know your dog best and take all the necessary precautions, the size of the dog does not matter. Make sure your pet is in his/ her best condition for the hike before you go on your adventure.
Related: Do Dogs Bring Happiness?