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We're taking our 2 year old GSD Lucca on a camping trip for 5 days and I would like some advice on what we can do to keep her out of trouble. We'll be driving from Colorado to Wyoming, South Dakota and North Dakota and will be staying in Rapid City, Theodore Roosevelt National Park and near Devil's Tower (in Wyoming).

On this trip, we're going to be camping in a large tent and will be traveling in our SUV.

Lucca is an extremely friendly and rather calm dog, but she will try to run after small animals (like squirrels etc.) if not restrained. She is rather well-behaved, has been though a few obedience classes and passed her "Canine Good Citizen" class last year.

My husband is the one who wants to bring Lucca on this trip, since I'm scared that she's going to get lost or hurt in some way. Any advice would be very much appreciated. Thanks.
 

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Well first off, relax. Just make sure you keep her leashed at all times when outside the tent. She should always be tethered to someone.

Second, how do you think she'll get hurt or lost? She shouldn't get lost if you have her leashed and she's with you. As for getting hurt, well that depends on anything really. She could easily get hurt at home so its just something you have to realize is always a possibility.

Don't stress on it. Just enjoy spending time out and about with her. And don't leave her alone at the campsite, in the tent, even crated unsupervised. Pretty straightforward.
 

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In April we took our GSD camping near the Grand Canyon, he was 8 months old at the time and had never been on a car drive that long, in a hotel or out of state OR camping. He did BEAUTIFULLY. :)

I kept him on a tie out or leashed to me, we didn't have any issues and since we were somewhere new he didn't want to leave my side. I never left him unsupervised though, not even to go to the bathroom! He slept in the tent with us at night, I was worried he'd try to get out but he just stayed next to me or in his bed the whole night. We had a great time and will definitely do it again!

If you're dog is stable, does ok in the car and doesn't get stressed easily then go for it. One of the things you can do is get a new cheapo ID tag and put your campground and site number on it too just in case and just keep her with you and secured(leashed/tie out at all times) and you should be fine. I got this leash, Amazon.com: Flat Out Leash, Obsidian Black, One Size: Pet Supplies, Amazon.com: Ruffwear Roamer Expandable Dog Leash, Large, Forest Green: Pet Supplies. It has an adjustable buckle strap so that you can hook the leash around your waist or around a tree/heavy object... It's also kind of like a bungee cord so the dog had a little more room to roam or there's a regular flat leash. I found it really nice using it around the campsite, I also had one of those tie outs that goes into the ground and a chew proof cable. My husband worried like you but everything went smoothly and it was a wonderful trip!

A couple pictures from our trip

IMG_8838_edited-1 by Carriesue82, on Flickr

IMG_8805_edited-1 by Carriesue82, on Flickr

And a video that might give some good info
 

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Awesome info, Carriesue! LOVE the pictures! I hope to get to do this one day with Malachi!! It gets me excited just thinking about it. I love the idea about getting a cheapo tag..but how do you know ahead of time what your site number is going to be? you ARE referring to the engravable tags, right? Or something else?..
 

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Agree only on lead. Never off, never have an oops.

Get a martingale collar that she won't slip out of.

Get some kind of long lead index does custom ones (so custom you have to ask for a handle loop!) and system like suggested.

I would consider something like this: Advanced Dog GPS Tracking Systems | Tagg the Pet Tracker which is a GPS system.

You can get things like this: Amazon.com: Pet Id Tag - Petprotek: Pet Supplies that store all their important information right on the collar tags

I also would print out all that important information - rabies certificate, etc, and have it in the glovebox.

I would have a summary of my dog's emergency information if I had to go to a vet - allergies, vaccinations, past surgeries, HW prevention, medicines so that if a vet needed to scan her information quickly they would be able to.

I would also google vet offices on the trip route and in the areas you would be staying. ER as well as regular.

First aid kit for the dog.

Still water = lepto, giardia, more yicky diarrhea inducing stuff...

Hot springs, cliffs, dogs may not understand the danger.

Find out things in that area that you may need to be on the lookout for that you don't normally see at home - I have no idea - snakes, different ticks/spiders, foxtail.

I don't think it's a silly thing to be worried - people get lost in the wilderness all the time, thinking they know more than they do or just not thinking, losing track of themselves, whatever.

Still, have fun - it will be a great trip! Enjoy looking at things from a dog's eye view. :)
 

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Well, first off I'm jealous of your planned trip. We've been taking Tess camping with us since she was 12 weeks old, she turned two just after we got home in June. Although this year she was offlead at our campsites, but leashed when walking trails. We go early in the year and up north so we are usually the only campers at the park. We have a motion light on her collar so she's easy to see at night. It took us a long time to trust her to be offlead, and I would be very careful about that. Enjoy it, you'll have a wonderful time.
Tess on the beach of Lake Superior.
 

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As others have said, leash leash leash. Carry LOTS of water for hiking-- more than you'd carry for a person. Depending on what sort of terrain she's used to and how much hiking/backpacking will be done, consider booties. And keep a good doggie first aid kit with you. Qwick stop, gas-x strips, hydrogen peroxide, gauze, betadine, stuff like that. Also, map out the closest e-vet for each place you go, just in case.

Most importantly, have fun :-D
 

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You are going to have so much fun. Guys here give you great advice.
If you worry she may slip from tent while you sleep, just leave her on long leash a secure it around your arm. That's what I did first couple time camping. I was worry my boy would somehow go through tent, well he did not even try.
 

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Relax and have fun. I take my dogs camping nearly every other weekend from April through October. Get a tie stake and make sure it is secure in the ground for her to be tied at camp, keep her on leash at all times so she cannot run away and most of all have fun. Once you are there and you see how much she enjoys it you will instantly be at ease! I take my GSD (who is VERY dog aggressive) camping with me and there are times there are upto 8 other dogs with us. He likes to go and I just have to take the precautions to protect him and the other dogs.

No different than taking a child camping, actually easier because they love to and can do just about anything you want to do!
 

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Another idea to be prepared for trips away from home is make up a flier w your dogs picture, info, and your contact info.... Print a couple copies and stick in your glove compartment just in case you need to quickly post a Lost Dog sign. If you never need it fantastic! You will feel better being prepared. Bet you will have a great time!
 

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two things that are mucho importante:

for daylight remaining:


for spiders/spider bites:


just be careful for flash-freezes. Even though it's summer, those areas can get super cold at night.
 

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Another idea to be prepared for trips away from home is make up a flier w your dogs picture, info, and your contact info.... Print a couple copies and stick in your glove compartment just in case you need to quickly post a Lost Dog sign. If you never need it fantastic! You will feel better being prepared. Bet you will have a great time!
Interesting. I am not experienced with GSD in such environments, but how could such dog get lost? They are so loyal and bonded with their owners and on top of that they posses a terrific sense of smell....
 

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Interesting. I am not experienced with GSD in such environments, but how could such dog get lost? They are so loyal and bonded with their owners and on top of that they posses a terrific sense of smell....
I had a GSD mix that broke through the tent in the middle of the night and the three other followed. It was pitch black out there. All of them came back within a half hour. I got little locks to put on the zippers, never happened again.
 

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Maybe try tent sleeping in the backyard first to acclimate the dog.

My GSD and I have done both tent and free-sleeps (no tent) and he sticks to me like glue, but we also have a lot of experience outdoors together.




Sent from Petguide.com Free App
 

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You guys will have so much fun! We go camping a few times a year with my 2 gsds, a pit bull and a border collie mutt. I worry every time and every time we have a great time and are exhausted when we come home.
Things I have learned:
- Have some first aid stuff on hand, don't be hasty on this. I remember one night one of the dogs got bit by a bug and I had no Benadryl because we were only gone one night and I didn't feel the need to pack the first aid stuff. Little town, late at night, hours away from emergency vet; it was a nightmare trying to find an antihistamine.
- take extra food. Little creatures at campsites are well socialized and like dog food.
- after our last trip I think I will be bringing skunk shampoo. The above mentioned, socialized little critter stealing dog food did not expect the dogs to be sleeping on the other side of the tent. It wasn't too bad but the dogs had a faint aroma of skunk for the rest of that weekend.
I like to take crates and xpens for overnight as they don't all fit in the tent but during the day they are on tie outs or on leash with me and I find it very relaxing.
 

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In the agility community we have had several incidents this past year of folks traveling to dog events in terrible car accidents, where dogs got spooked and owners got hospitalized/separated from dogs...and extensive searches were undertaken... Usually far from home. Fire works, thunderstorms, lots of things can happen. Being prepared ( and hopefully never needing it) costs little but can bring peace of mind.
 
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