Why You Should Take Your Dog Hiking With You
According to the American Pet Products Association, 48% of households own a dog. If you are one of these lucky owners, you will know how important it is to make sure that your dog gets plenty of exercise. Those daily walks are necessary to keep your canine companion fit and healthy. If you have a dog breed that is suitable
for long walks (generally not flat-faced breeds such as the pug or French bulldog), taking your dog hiking can be beneficial for both of you. It is a great bonding exercise and you can explore the country together.
Going hiking can a significant amount of calories an hour. For both you and your dog, it is far more physical than walking and helps build up muscle strength
. If you are interested in all of the great things can do, read our article on the benefits of hiking
. When you are hiking somewhere that is hilly or with rough terrain, you will find yourself using all of the key muscle groups, not just your legs. Just make sure that you take regular breaks with your dog and provide them with plenty of healthy snacks to keep their energy levels up, and also ensure they are cool enough if in warm weather. Picking dog treats that contain hemp oil
is a good idea as these help to soothe joints, reducing inflammation. Make sure that you also take plenty of water for both you and your dog and take regular stops for a drink.
It is important for a dog to have plenty of mental stimulation
; it can’t be all about exercise. Taking them on the same route around the block everyday will swiftly become boring for your dog. You will find that they no longer bother to sniff the familiar lampposts. Taking them out hiking with you will give your dog a complete change of scenery that is full of new sights and smells for them to explore. A dog who is mentally stimulated, is a happy dog. At the end of the day, it’s not just hiking that will make them tired, it is the exposure to somewhere brand new that will have them curling up, snoring contentedly down by your feet.
You might think that you look after your dog, but they look after you too, both physically and mentally. Dogs are naturally good at judging which terrain is good for walking and which terrain is best avoided, and if you run into trouble, you may find that it is your dog who becomes your personal guardian. There are often stories in the news about dogs who have barked to alert the authorities that their owner has fallen down. There are even dogs that have rescued hikers
. Hiking with dogs can also deter some of those large animals from coming closer, bears, moose, and others. Hiking with your dog can be mentally beneficial too. Dogs are excellent company – you can talk to your dog when you’re out in the wilderness. They will always listen and never judge.
Going hiking with your dog is the perfect way for you both to keep fit and healthy. It is a good all-round form of exercise where you can enjoy the beauty of nature together.
Max DesMarais is the founder of hikingandfishing.com. He has a passion for the outdoors and making outdoor education and adventure more accessible. Max is a published author for various outdoor adventure, travel, and marketing websites. He is an experienced hiker, backpacker, fly fisherman, trail runner, and spends his free time in the outdoors. These adventures allow him to test gear, learn new skills, and experience new places so that he can educate others. Max grew up hiking all around New Hampshire and New England. He became obsessed with the New Hampshire mountains, and the NH 48, where he guided hikes and trail runs in the White Mountains. Since moving out west, Max has continued his frequent adventures in the mountains, always testing gear, learning skills, gaining experience, and building his endurance for outdoor sports. You can read more about his experience here: hikingandfishing/about