A lot of tent campers love taking their furry friend on a camping trip with them (myself included).
But it can be a nightmare trying to remember everything that you have to bring along for your dog.
This is especially true when all we’re worrying about is the items we have to bring along for ourselves and our family.
So in this article, I am laying out a dog camping checklist, to make your life easier for when you go on your next camping trip.
First Aid Kit
Your dog requires DIFFERENT types of items and medications that us humans use.
It is more than necessary to pack a first aid kit for the humans, and also pack one specifically for your dog.
Jacket and Booties
This is only needed if your dog has a small amount of fur or if the dog is small.
This is highly recommended if you are camping in cold conditions or when temperatures are known to dip by a lot during the early hours of the morning.
If you are staying in cold climates, then I suggest you use these for ANY dog anyway! No matter what type it is.
Not a must-have, but definitely helpful at nighttime.
Snap a glowstick and attach it to your dogs collar, this will allow you to see where the the dog is located, as you will notice the dog/glowstick moving around in the darkness.
It has helped me more times than I can remember, which is why I’m including it in this list.
Your dog is going to get dirty.
You will need to bring a dog brush with you to remove all the junk he catches in his coat.
Grass, thistles, leaves, dirt, pine needles, your dog is bound to pick these things while he’s out-and-about exploring with you.
Toys and Treats
If your dog has a favorite treat, I highly recommend you bring that with you.
Calming your dog down can be a stressful process, you can make it easier by providing great toys and treats that he loves.
This will stop your dog from getting bored.
Because a bored dog will result in him barking and annoying/disturbing other camp goers.
Towels JUST For Your Dog
In addition to the towels you are bringing for the humans, you should always bring a few more for your dog.
When your dog gets dirty, you can wash him off and dry him with the towel.
Bed and Tarp
You should not even hesitate to bring this with you.
You have a nice, warm, cozy bed to sleep in, so why not bring your dogs warm bed along too.
Your dog will thank you for it. Furthermore, MAKE SURE you bring an extra tarp.
Place it under your dogs bed to stop the grounds cold moisture from coming up and reaching the bed.
Need I say more?
Pick it up as soon as you notice it, because you wouldn’t like stepping in a big pile of poo, and neither does other camp goers. Stop this from happening in the first place.
Many campsites are incredibly strict when it comes to this anyway, so it is best to be ready for it.
When you camp with your dog, you have a huge responsibility.
You have to remember that the more people who don’t follow the rules, the higher the chances that the campsite owners will just stop allowing dogs altogether, ruining it for the rest of the campers.
Leash, Collar or Harness
As mentioned above, your dog is your responsibility.
You will need a high quality, STRONG leash and collar that is going to hold up when your dog decides it wants to lunge for something.
Whether that be for a wild animal, person, or other dog.
If your dog is small or behaved, and there aren’t many other dogs in the same area, a retractable leash works incredibly well, as it gives your dog more freedom to move around and explore with you.
Dog Chain and Stake
I would recommend a 20-foot strong lead or chain to allow more freedom in and around your camping area.
Your dog is going to be tied up a lot at your campsite, at least ensure that it’s not going to get away when you aren’t watching it.
And because a lot of campsites don’t let you tie your dog to a tree, you will be required to bring a stake with you. These work amazingly well.
A stake is a strong piece of equipment that sticks into the ground, it provides a place to tie your dog up to.
And because you can remove them and place them anywhere, makes for great convenience.
Dog Carrier or Crate
This is only necessary if your dog loves to run havoc in the car, because you will need to take it to the campsite, obviously.
A completely free dog in the car isn’t the best choice, as it can cause an accident.
I want you to stay safe, so this is the better option if your dog tends to stress you out while you are driving.
However, if your dog is well-behaved, then this step is not necessary.
I would also suggest some paper towels or baby wipes.
Because 50% of dogs tend to get sick on a long car ride, be prepared for when the inevitable does happen.
Don’t forget to use carpet cleaner too!
Dog Food and Water Bowl
Pretty self explanatory really. Your dog needs to eat and drink.
Your dog gets thirsty during the day, its bowl should always be filled with fresh water. Bring an extra amount for your dog.
I would also like to mention that you need to store all food away during the night to avoid attracting wildlife. This includes the dog food too.
Please note: DO NOT get your water from nearby rivers or lakes, they usually have bacteria, parasites, or chemicals, causing your dog to get sick.
Avoid this from happening by asking the local ranger. If it’s safe for humans, then it is safe for dogs as well.
Dog ID Tags
You should always ensure your dog is wearing his or her tags. Because it’s a possibility that your dog can get lost.
It is better to be safe than sorry.
The dog tag should have your phone number so you can be reached while you’re out camping.
There’s no point in having your home number because you won’t be there!
Most of these items I have included in this list are complete must-haves.
As in, you should not think twice about bringing them along with you, because they are needed.
You have to remember, when you camp with your dog, you have a huge amount of extra responsibility.
Know what to do and what not to do when you begin your trip with your dog.
And here’s exactly how to do it.
If you enjoyed this article and found it helpful, then leave a comment below!
12 thoughts on “A Full Dog Camping Checklist For Your Furry Friend”
Hi, glad I found your post as we’re getting ready to go camping and this is the perfect post to get my dog ready for our trip. I really like the extra tarp idea for underneath his bed, that’s very smart so his bed won’t get wet. Also, the extra towels just for our dog would be helpful when we all get wet in the lake.
Love all the ideas here, thanks so much!
Thanks for the comment.
I’m so glad you found my tips helpful, and I’m sure you will take advantage of them asap – so you can see how good they really are 🙂
This is such a great article.. We always take our dog with us and your list is even better than mine. The glow stick is brilliant. I didn’t think of that I always have my flash light. You gave such good ideas like the tarp to go under the dogs bed and the booties. It was a really great read and I will be bookmarking your site to come by often to see all your new and wonderful ideas that us the normal haven’t even thought about! Thank you so much for all your insights!
It took me a long time before I even THOUGHT about doing the glowstick trick. It just gives you a peace of mind as you can see your dog in the distance. In the dark you always want to know where he/she is.
What a helpful article you have here. I bet a ton of people would forget many if these items unless they had a checklist or of course this post handy. I know I’d probably forget the towel for the dog. I love the glow Sticks idea. I have never even thought of that. Thanks for the great idea.
That’s funny you say that, because it’s so true. A lot of people will only remember the basics, such as: a dog bed, bowl of water, and dog food. But that is by far from being all you need.
That’s a perfect checklist for taking your dog to camping, this list will avoid any or most of the problems that may occur. You can never be sure that your pet will act like home when you are outside, in fact, the trip that was supposed to be fun can turn out to be the worst one if you don’t take precautions.
I like to plan things like this, it not only gives you a peace of mind but you also know what to expect. Good tips Brandon, keep up the good work!
I know right! It could be way too exciting for a dog, causing him to run around and disturb the neighbors since he’s not really use to seeing it all. This guide goes into perfect detail, to teach you exactly how to prepare your dog before the camping trip. And trust me, it won’t be easy! But it will definitely help you while your are out camping since he will be trained much better.
Thanks for the comment,
It’s amazing how valuable a “simple” (but effective) list can be to have, at least in my experience. I’ve found that I try to start thinking of everything I’ll need at some point in advance of my trip, and start assembling a checklist. I almost ALWAYS miss a key thing or two. Having access to reference something like this from someone who’s been there is a great help!
Keep up the great work, Brandon!
A list is essential, ESPECIALLY if you’re a newbie to the camping world. Yeah man, you’re bound to miss something when you think of items just from the top of your head, and it’s usually the most important item, haha. Sometimes you end up spending more of your budget because you have to go out to the nearest store and grab the item that you forgot, and while you’re at it you grab snacks and drinks too, lol. Thanks for your comment 🙂
Hello Brandon, a very comprehensive , ‘must take with you’ list.
This is an asset to campers with dogs, new campers, and anyone likely to forget some essentials.
Any camper finding your site, (who fit’s into the category), will be greatly delighted. It is always good to get needed information from someone who has, ‘been there and done that’! They are not guessing they know!
I am a ‘list’ person, as they say, a piece of paper never forget. Somehow I feel more confident once I have written it down, (providing I have not misplaced the list!) 🙂 At the end of my preparation I can refer to my list to see if I missed anything. Well done!
You post is excellent and your images are spot on, (there’s one I have no clue what it is), but for the post!
Thank you for your wonderful feedback, EJ. I’m super glad that you found my post to work as intended, and that’s to provide an easy-to-read dog checklist without all the jibba jabba/things you don’t REALLY need. Cheers!