Hiking With Your Furry Friend: Health And Injury Concerns To Be Aware Of

Posted on: 17 March 2015

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Dogs can easily get bored inside the house, which is why you may decide to take your furry friend on your next hiking trip. If you want to make sure you have an amazing hiking experience that is both safe and enjoyable, here are a few things that you need to be aware of.

Dehydration

Regardless of the temperature outside, it is easy for you as well as your dog to get dehydrated. Many dogs will drink out of streams, creeks, and rivers. However, if you're on a new trail, you may not know exactly where the water sources are located. Even if you do, they could be dry. Therefore, you need to make sure you bring along plenty of water and a bowl, possibly a collapsible one, for your dog. Offer your pet something to drink every 20 to 30 minutes to ensure he stays hydrated throughout the hike.

Infectious Diseases

There are many diseases out there that your hiking buddy can catch while on the trail. Therefore, you need to ensure that before you head out into the mountains that your pet has had all of his vaccinations. The two most common types of illnesses that your dog could contract while out in the wild are rabies and leptospirosis. There is no cure for rabies, and it is fatal. Leptospirosis could result in kidney failure.

Parasites

When hiking, there are a number of parasites that you have to be concerned above. There are infected mosquitoes, ticks, fleas, and plenty of other pests that could harm your dog. So, if you go hiking often, use a high-quality monthly parasite medication from your veterinarian to help prevent parasite illnesses.

Injuries

Regardless of how sure-footed your canine is, hiking is dangerous and challenging. To help prevent any type of hiking injuries, you will want to ensure that your dog is on a short leash so that you have good control over him. Avoid tall weeds and grasses or you may have a run-in with a snake. Don't forget to pack a small first-aid kit for your dog in case something does happen.

Hiking with your canine friend is supposed to be fun. The majority of dogs are very eager to embark in the great outdoors, but you need to make sure you're prepared. If you have any questions about how to keep your dog healthy and safe while hiking, consult with your veterinarian well in advance. When you get back home, if you suspect that your dog has contracted any sort of bacteria or disease, schedule an appointment with the veterinarian immediately.