Dogs and camping
The last few years of lockdown have meant many of us have missed out on holidays. So, with that, all behind us, camping around Australia increasing in popularity!
While camping may sound like the ideal break for your dog to enjoy with you, you may also have your reservations about their behaviour once they are in unfamiliar outdoor surroundings. For example, will they run off after a kangaroo?
In this article, we will cover how to your dog ready for a camping trip in the great outdoors. We will also discuss ways to keep your dog safe from wildlife and other dangers.
Camping & crate training, a winning combination
Access to a small confined area like a crate is perfect for your dog when camping. There are many uses for it; safely transport your dog, to get some time by yourself, a nice safe place (remember your dog may be stressed if this is their first time going away on holiday. For more info on crate training check out our dedicated crate training post.
Rely on your recall
As (in my opinion) the single most important command you can teach your dog, recall is essential when camping. There will likely be a lo of distractions in even the most populated campgrounds, some of these distractions will include; other animals, people, and cooking.
When faced with these distractions, it could be a life-saving skill, if you can say “come” and your dog comes back to you. However, having a reliable recall takes time. Plan ahead, if your camping in the summer, I recommend 6 months of recall training. See our dedicated recall guide for more info.
Mat / bed training
A basic but important command
A basic command such as an “on your mat” is a great trick to have up your sleeve whilst camping. The ‘mat’ can be anything from a towel to their actual sleeping bed.
Snake aversion training
Off the grid or not, snakes are a reality in Australia. If you have a high drive dog such as a Border Collie or German Shepard, they will probably think it is a game to chase after a snake which does often not end well. My recommendation is to contact an experienced dog trainer who specialises in snake avoidance (Focus On Dog Training does not offer this service) well before you intend to go camping. That way you can be at peace knowing that your dog will be away from danger!
If your dog is injured whilst camping, it is important to ensure you have the right products to contain the injury before a vet can be found. A pet first aid kit can be an inexpensive safeguard in these situations.
One step further would be to enroll in a pet first aid course either online or in-person.
This article explores just some of the basics your dog will need for a camping trip. For more help book an in-home training session, tailored to the needs of your dog and your family.
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