Pets are a big part of the family. That’s why when you go camping it’s hard to leave your furry friends at home. Taking a pet on any outing will have challenges, but if you prepare, prepare, and prepare some more, it will be the adventure of a lifetime! We’ve put together some helpful tips to make sure you can enjoy the great outdoors with your loyal companion…
1. Choose the right Tentsile
We get asked a lot: “are Tentsile Tree Tents animal-friendly?”. The simple answer is – Yes! The spacious 2-person Connect and our range of 3-person Tree Tents are big enough to accommodate both you and your pet. These options have a durable floor fabric strong enough for claws and nails*, while our lightweight range and Mesh hammocks may be slightly more at risk of tearing. * Just don’t forget to clip back your pet's claws before packing up and hiking out!
2. Find the perfect campsite/route
Call ahead to your chosen campground, and make sure they are animal-friendly. While you may love your cats and dogs dearly, unfortunately not everyone else will. Then, if you’re ready to climb mountains, to paddle rivers, and cross deserts, that’s awesome! Just consider if your pet is ready too. Pick an adventure that suits you both. Know your pet’s physical capabilities, and explore smooth hiking trails or canoeing trips for smaller animals to even enjoy. Ruffwear has a range of canine personal flotation devices (PFD) and adventure gear to help you get kitted out for any outdoor experience.
3. Packing the right gear
As well as your own pack and PFD, there are a few other tips for packing out your pet. Check out Camping With Dogs: Backpacking with Dogs Top 10 Essentials for a complete rundown of gear and equipment.
To get you started, pick up the Tentsile TribeDog Leash, at 5'/1.5m length, it’s perfect for giving your pet freedom to roam, while still keeping them safe under your control.
To help protect your Tree Tent from scratches and tears, we recommend bringing a SkyPad camping mat or bedding. This layer will not only give you both extra insulation but will also help to provide some friction under your pet’s paws and stop any sliding while sleeping in the trees.
photos by @klymit & @_neegz_
4. Getting Ready Together – Training and Behaviour
No one knows your pet better than you. You know every bark, every meow, and every cheeky look. Before starting your adventure consider your pet’s temperament and behaviour: do they listen to you and follow commands? Are they ever aggressive towards people or wildlife? Do they have a tendency to wander off? While all of these things make up their personalities at home, in the great outdoors, these can be dangerous. In the run-up to your trip, practice simple commands and training techniques. Be sure you can count on good behaviour before you plan your adventure. Plus, make sure they have all of their vaccinations fully up-to-date before heading into the wilderness.
5. Outdoor Etiquette
In the backcountry, sound travels far. The sound of a dog’s bark travels even further. To help respect your fellow campers and wildlife, dogs that bark constantly should be trained before hitting the trail. Then, when passing other hikers, it is always best to step off the trail and let others pass first. Let them know you have your pet under control.
Last, but definitely not least, poop. Did you know – pet waste can take over a year to decompose? Don’t forget to keep our trails and campsites clean, folks! On day trips where you know proper waste disposal is available, simply pack it out. On longer journeys, the general rule is to bury it deep (at least 5 inches) and away from water sources. Leave No Trace and The Dog People have some very interesting info on this topic…
And there you have it - simple steps to keep everyone enjoying the outdoors!