Updated: Aug 27
Whenever you’re taking your dog outside to hike, camp, fish, or more, it’s always good to make sure you are prepared for both you and the pup. Packing not only the 10 Essentials for you but also enough supplies to keep your dog happy and safe on the trail is crucial.
Learn what to pack for a day hike with your dog from Raquel with Seattle Mountain Rescue.
If your dog is new to longer distances, be sure to check its paw pads throughout the day. Younger dogs or ones that spend time inside need to build up their paw pads for the various terrain you’ll be traveling. Start slow with your dog to make longer objectives more enjoyable. Always be ready to reward with praise or treats to help create a positive experience.
We introduced wound care tips for humans, but what happens if your 4-legged friend gets injured on the trail?
Micro Ventures, a free digital program to engage all ages in outdoor-related activities. Stay tuned for a different "Micro Venture" each week.
Katie, Caitlin, and Chelsea from Adventure Ready Brands share helpful tips on what you pack for your dog.
Adventure Ready Brands is committed to foundational outdoor education and empowerment for young girls through donations to the SheJumps Wild Skills programs. We’re excited they are collaborating on our weekly Micro Ventures content.
Always make sure you have enough water for you AND your dog. Some trails may have plenty of streams and water sources your dog can drink from, but others may not. Research the trail or place you will be exploring and think about the seasonality. In the height of summer or early fall, some water sources aren’t as reliable as they would be in the spring.
If you’re packing water for your dog, make sure to bring a dish that your dog will drink from. If you’re not sure, test it out at home before you go. Another option is to train your dog to drink from your hydration pack.
Be prepared to treat the most common injuries your dog may encounter in the outdoors, like paw injuries, splinters and thorns, and ticks. A simple first-aid kit for dogs, like the Adventure Medical Kit Trail Dog, has all the first-aid supplies you need as well as first-aid information to help you treat your dog’s injuries.
When your dog is in pain, he or she may not understand you’re trying to help. Consider muzzling your dog before treating. To make a muzzle, use the triangle bandage in the kit and tie around the dog’s nose with an overhand knot and another knot around the back of the neck.
A handy item to bring with you is a set of tweezers or splinter picker to remove splinters, ticks, and porcupine quills. After you remove the item, clean the wound to avoid infection. The kit also includes bandages for treating paw pad abrasions or cuts.
Consult with your veterinarian if your dog is seriously injured.
How to bandage a dog’s paw
Bandaging a dog's paw can help further damage to the tender area. Below are steps to take to make sure your dog is comfortable until you can make it home.
Wound irrigation tool
SheJumps Program Director, Christy, shares how to keep your dog calm while bandaging and slinging a dog's paw.
Clean the wound. Rinse the wound with clean water. Remove any dirt or debris with tweezers + irrigation tool.
Be sure the paw and leg are dry to make sure the bandage will stick because moisture can also cause further damage.
Apply antibiotic ointment to the gauze. Then apply gauze to the wound.
Apply a layer of cushion which can be extra gauze or cotton roll to the wound areas.
Next apply the vet wrap/ bandage that sticks to itself which holds everything in place.
To finish the bandage by applying tape to the top of the bandage making sure that the tape is centered ½ on the bandage and ½ on the leg this will help with bandage from slipping.
How to make a dog sling
Anyone who has ever treated a dog paw injury knows that keeping it on is a challenge. Most dogs will do just about anything to get that bandage off as soon as possible. Creating a dog sling from an old sock will solve this problem!
Follow the PDF instructions on how to cut and fit a sock to prevent the dog from licking its wound.