Camping soon. (super long) - German Shepherd Dog Forums
 
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-18-2012, 09:41 PM Thread Starter
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Camping soon. (super long)

My boyfriend and I are a part of this thing called SCA (Society for Creative Anachronism. Look up Estrella War on youtube, and that's basically what they do), and each year, there's a HUGE battle that is a week long. There's camping, bonfires, drum circles, belly dancing...pretty much, a week long camping ren fair.

Anywho, we're bringing Sheldon this year. It'll be his first time around this quantity of people (around 5,000 attend) and dogs. Lately, he's been having some issues with dogs, and while I've nipped most in the butt, I'm still a little worried about buttsniffers, as that seems to set him off the most (even if the other dog is being 100% submissive. Tail down, ears back, head lowered, etc). We got him a prong collar tonight, which is AMAZING, and I'm considering a muzzle, sort of a just in case. I also think that if he's muzzled, people will be less likely to let their dogs bum-rush him, and will keep their kids from running at him full speed (he loves this, but I don't want him jumping up on kiddos and them getting hurt). Any thoughts on that?

To keep him from getting over-stimulated, I'm thinking this sort of schedule:
Wake up, feed him, eat breakfast.
Wander around with him to look at the booths, watch the fighters, hang out.
Back to camp for lunch (we'll say 1230-1ish).
Lunch for him as well, along with crate time for a nap.
Come back in about 3 or so hours to prepare for dinner and the drum circle, or whatever else is planned, and let him stay out until around 11pm-midnight.
Sleep all night. Repeat.

I guess I'm a tad nervous, as I've never been camping with a dog, especially not around this many unknown people. (btw, they do a rabies check at the door, it's mandatory to pick up poops or you get banned for the rest of the event, and crates are a must. You can't leave pets in an unattended vehicle or closed tent, but leaving them crated in the shade outside is fine)

Tips?
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-18-2012, 10:09 PM
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My only advice is to have fun and I would take a weekend camping trip prior and get him used to the environment. You know your dog and if he seems to be stressed be prepared to leave.

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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-18-2012, 10:17 PM Thread Starter
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Yeah, we're going on one next month where he'll be around about 20 people or so. He's been on over-nighters before, just never one that's completely outside, or with this many people. I figure if he gets too stressed, we'll put him in his crate and leave him at camp where it should be fairly calm (yet supervised 24/7). thanks =3
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-18-2012, 10:19 PM
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When is this? How much time do you have to get ready?

I do a lot of camping with my dogs. The older two are old-hats. The youngest came home in July and had quite a few expeditions, so he's pretty good with it, too.

Even with them so acclimated to it, I'd be concerned over what you're describing. That's A LOT of people, activity! Talk about stimuli, whew!

How's your dog on a tie out? Will this place have campers crammed in tight together? Is it tent or camper camping? (Tent camping is quite a chore with dogs... been there, done it, it can be done most certainly... but they'll hear outdoor noises far more in a tent, and if sensitive to that, you'll be up all night with a restless dog!)

How is he in crowds? (sounds like he'll be exposed to them.)

How do you think he'll act when you're just hanging out at the campsite and random people walk by?

Like sagelfn said, can you do a few trial camping runs first? Get him used to sleeping in a tent (or camper, or whatever you have) ? I very, very strongly suggest that. You'll find the weaknesses and be more ready. (how much food to take, how to be sure you have fresh water, how he'll act when an owl makes noise, etc and so on!)

I'm not trying to be discouraging in the slightest, I think it's a great opportunity for him! My only worry would be it might be very overwhelming to go from never doing it (camping) to a massive camp trip like this one.!
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-18-2012, 10:35 PM Thread Starter
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This won't be until the end of March, so I have quite a bit of time to prepare =3

He's never really been on a tie out, but he's chewed through a leash before when he was tethered to my brother (brother wasn't paying attention...:facepalm. We were thinking about getting a stake and chain for him.

This will be tent camping for us, but we have a HUGE 10 person tent with 3 partitions, plus we're taking his crate. When we've gone on overnighters before, as long as he has his crate, he sleeps fine. The campsite shouldn't be terribly crowded, and we have a black 'wall' that will surround it, so other people walking by shouldn't bother him much. As for hanging out, I think as long as he's with me, he'll be great. he likes to greet people, be pet and all that stuff. When he's alone, I'm thinking about putting him in his crate in the tent with the window open so he's not watching everything and will be able to calm down.

He's a little hyper in crowds, which is why I got the prong. He loves people so much xD He can be iffy with dogs, but it's not all the time, which is why I'm considering a muzzle.

I'm hoping he'll do great!! I wonder if setting up the tent in a yard somewhere and just sleeping in it with him a couple nights would work...

Haha, i'm worried about the over stimulation as well, though I think with a few nap times/calm times, he'll adjust okay. He's been a trooper about everything else we've thrown at him (moving, shooting, horses, 3 hour car rides, random over night trips, Thanksgiving with 30 people, staying at my parents house, etc). Crossing my fingers this won't be any different!!
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-20-2012, 07:46 PM
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This won't be until the end of March, so I have quite a bit of time to prepare =3

He's never really been on a tie out, but he's chewed through a leash before when he was tethered to my brother (brother wasn't paying attention...:facepalm. We were thinking about getting a stake and chain for him.

This will be tent camping for us, but we have a HUGE 10 person tent with 3 partitions, plus we're taking his crate. When we've gone on overnighters before, as long as he has his crate, he sleeps fine. The campsite shouldn't be terribly crowded, and we have a black 'wall' that will surround it, so other people walking by shouldn't bother him much. As for hanging out, I think as long as he's with me, he'll be great. he likes to greet people, be pet and all that stuff. When he's alone, I'm thinking about putting him in his crate in the tent with the window open so he's not watching everything and will be able to calm down.

He's a little hyper in crowds, which is why I got the prong. He loves people so much xD He can be iffy with dogs, but it's not all the time, which is why I'm considering a muzzle.

I'm hoping he'll do great!! I wonder if setting up the tent in a yard somewhere and just sleeping in it with him a couple nights would work...

Haha, i'm worried about the over stimulation as well, though I think with a few nap times/calm times, he'll adjust okay. He's been a trooper about everything else we've thrown at him (moving, shooting, horses, 3 hour car rides, random over night trips, Thanksgiving with 30 people, staying at my parents house, etc). Crossing my fingers this won't be any different!!
I would start getting him used to a tie out, since you'll surely be using one. There are probably some rules about how long of a tie you can have. Most campgrounds are six foot maximum, but I've sure never seen any enforcement of it.

I'd be worried about leaving my dog crated in a tent if I wasn't there. Too many jerks in the world and you can't lock a tent and have no control over temperature. This is actually why I bought a camper! For my dogs! It's not that I'm away from the campsite often, but if I wanted to go take a shower and the bf was at work, I couldn't.

I think the tent in the yard is a fabulous idea. The first night keep it calm. Then maybe the second time, get someone to make some noise outside, just like people walking by talking would make.

I'm sure Sheldon will be great!
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-20-2012, 10:02 PM
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LOVE SCA!!! I've been around them my whole life! My mom was involved with the group. My kids have some interest, but now that they are older, I am letting them decide how much to be involved.

In truth, I think Scarlett would freak out, due to people wearing costumes she is unaccustomed to, but she would get used to it. The whole camping thing would be a dog adventure that she would probably enjoy if introduced to it beforehand.

Have a great time!! My kids and I used to go to the Longs Peak
Scottish Irish Highlands Festival when we lived in Colorado. My daughter danced at the Feis.

It should be a fun time for all!

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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-21-2012, 03:14 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by chelle View Post
I would start getting him used to a tie out, since you'll surely be using one. There are probably some rules about how long of a tie you can have. Most campgrounds are six foot maximum, but I've sure never seen any enforcement of it.

I'd be worried about leaving my dog crated in a tent if I wasn't there. Too many jerks in the world and you can't lock a tent and have no control over temperature. This is actually why I bought a camper! For my dogs! It's not that I'm away from the campsite often, but if I wanted to go take a shower and the bf was at work, I couldn't.

I think the tent in the yard is a fabulous idea. The first night keep it calm. Then maybe the second time, get someone to make some noise outside, just like people walking by talking would make.

I'm sure Sheldon will be great!
Yeah, six foot is the maximum length of any sort of leash or tie out. (they enforce this heavily, as they want to be able to keep having the dogs allowed to come).What about putting his crate outside of the tent? The campsite will have people there constantly (we have a guard system). The only people allowed in our campsite are people we know, or must be accompanied by someone who is camping with us. Thanks for the tips =3 I'm pretty excited

Quote:
Originally Posted by Scarlettsmom View Post
LOVE SCA!!! I've been around them my whole life! My mom was involved with the group. My kids have some interest, but now that they are older, I am letting them decide how much to be involved.

In truth, I think Scarlett would freak out, due to people wearing costumes she is unaccustomed to, but she would get used to it. The whole camping thing would be a dog adventure that she would probably enjoy if introduced to it beforehand.

Have a great time!! My kids and I used to go to the Longs Peak
Scottish Irish Highlands Festival when we lived in Colorado. My daughter danced at the Feis.

It should be a fun time for all!
Hehe, I was sure there were other SCA people here I love it as well =3 Sheldon doesn't really mind costumes or armor (he's around it quite a bit. we try to take him to all of the practices so he's used to the clanking and crashing).

I hear the Irish Highlands one is a great time!! We have a few people who go to that one, as well as penssik (spelling?) and any others they can get to =3 We're a part of a mercenary group xD
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