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Last Updated : 2005-12-08 13:32:46 (3753 read)
Hiking is an enjoyable way to spend time with your dog and get exercise that you both need. Adding a pack to your dog also lets him carry his share!

Adult dogs can carry up to 25% of their body weight (puppies should not pack any weight until they are a year old). This means they can carry water, treats, snacks, first aid kits, and other things.

Just like anything else, dogs must be trained to carry a pack. Training should be fun! Puppies and trainees can carry packs filled with wadded newspaper on daily walks. This will help them adjust to the new dimensions of their bodies. As the dog matures, start conditioning him to carry more weight. There are several rules for pack hiking:

  • Observe local leash laws. Do not allow your dog off leash unless you have a reliable recall. A reliable recall does not mean repeatedly yelling at your dog.

  • Yield the right-of-way to other trail users, especially those with larger pack animals (horses, goats, llamas).

  • Ask permission before letting your dog be friendly with other dogs.

  • Scoop the poop!

  • Do not allow your dog to chase wildlife.

The Trail Dog Brochure was developed by the Trail Dog List. Print it out and post it at a trailhead or pass it out to friends and strangers.

Also of use are these Lost Pet ID tags (male or female). Complete the information on the tag, fold it in half, have it laminated, and attach it to your dog's pack.