First of all, be prepared when you and your dog go out hiking. Portland Mountain Rescue wants you to consider these elements of safety:
1) Know the weather and the trail conditions before you go
2) Be familiar with the route you will take
3) Be prepared with the necessary supplies
4) Have a backup plan just in case
5) Depending on where you are going, find out if you will need park passes or permits.
There are some special conditions you may encounter on a hike with your dog. First, remember that rocky trails may be hard on a dog’s paws. Know your dog and what she can handle, and consider bringing booties to protect her feet. Along the way you may encounter animals that pose a danger to your pet, including snakes, skunks, cougars, porcupines, bears, or other animals that you might surprise on the trail. The water in any streams you come across may be contaminated with giardia, so you will want to bring your own water for drinking. Be aware of poisonous plants in the area– poison ivy and poison oak, and plants that are poisonous when eaten. In the summer months it’s important to remember that heat stroke can be fatal to dogs, so on hot days be sure you have plenty of shade and water on your hike.
Finally, it is highly recommended that you leash your dog while hiking. On some trails one misstep by a tired or frightened dog can lead to disastrous results if they are not on a leash. When hiking with your dog, be smart, be safe, be prepared, and most of all, have fun! Find out more about our dog walking services.