The fast-paced world has taken away everything for us including our time and creativity. John Keats once said,” A thing of beauty is a joy forever”, but this joy seems to have faded away with respect to time, and there comes hiking. Hiking maintains the general well-being by inducing a positive vibe inside us. No wonder a single hike can replenish the joy in our life. Similar is the case with the lab, they equally enjoy hiking, and when it comes to joining their favorite person, then their joy increases exponentially.
Hiking is one of the most satiating and pleasurable outdoor activities that one can do. It is rightly said that best-hiking partners have four legs! Most dog breeds get overwhelmed by the fact that they are going for a hike. One cannot deny the fact that dogs enjoy a whole lot than us when it comes to hiking. You might have noticed the reaction of the dog when it’s time to go for a walk and believe me if you have a lab as a hiking partner then you are one of the luckiest people in this world. They are not only adorable and cute but also can be extremely hiking friendly partners.
But, why labs can go for Hiking?
Labs for the vibrant, energetic, and fun loving creature and you won’t be able to hold them back as soon as it will get the intuition for a hike. Hiking is an ideal condition wherein it will explore the world and of course, the wilderness is their origin. Wolves are their ancestors and it is not astonishing to know they love the wilderness. They are robust, strong, and cheery, so they are a compatible partner.
And the best part about having a four-legged partner on hiking is that you can go according to your stamina and the burden of having any under-performing will go away as dogs have great stamina and they are tailor-made for traveling longer distances. Moreover, you won’t get frustrating comments like “no proper accommodation”, “I’m tired let’s take rest”, and “so many bugs” from them as they know that it is part of the fun. So basically they are really easygoing beings in terms of traveling provided that you are regularly feeding it with fresh water.
The average age of a lab is around 12-13 years and in the first half of their life even an athlete can be jealous of them as they can tirelessly hike for the entire day! In the later walks of life their capacity significantly decreases but you can count on them for short hikes. Labs are like a well oiled machine, you just need to give them adequate food and water and they walk with your for rest of your hike without any worries.
Essential pre-hiking tips
Perfect hiking can be possible if you do some proper planning and keep some points in your head. Sometimes, we get too excited about hiking with our favorite pooch and we miss some essential points. So, it is extremely necessary to sort out different things before because it’s now or neve. Here are some of the pre-hiking tips that you should keep in mind while going for a hike with your lab.
- Train first
Before going for a hike make sure that you train your dogs with essential commands like for calling, sitting, standing and pooing. Toilet command is very important as the place where you will stay can be not so dog-friendly and the dog might take it as a poo spot. So it’s necessary to train dogs in certain circumstance or get ready for watching your tent getting converted into toilet.
- Choose dog friendly locations
Many camping sites and hiking spots don’t allow dogs to maintain a peaceful ecosystem. Some foreign animals are not allowed in some critical biological hotspots and they can easily disturb the ecosystem. So you should double the terms before making any prior plan.
- Vaccinate your dog regularly
Hiking spots are sometimes located at a remote location and there can be a chance of contracting any new disease while hiking so it becomes a compulsion to immunize your pooch before embarking on any journey. Urban life is relatively safer because of the sanitized environment.
- Pest Control
Before embarking on a long hike make sure to apply medicines that will prevent your labs’ from fleas and ticks. Medicines can be useful for a long time and can kills eggs, larvae and adults. For more natural options you can use green dragon’s ticks and fleas killer.
- A GPS collar or an ID will come handy
Collars with any sort of identification or a GPS enabled collar is very essential for hiking. It will have essential information which will help it to trace. Many dog owners use GPS enabled collar which gives real time update of their lab’s location.
Hiking essentials for your dog
1) Gears and Essentials
- Water Bottle
Water Bottle is very essential for hiking because Labradors have a big built so they need lots of water in regular interval for better working. Excessive hiking can cause dehydration which can minimize your dog’s performance. So, it is advisable to carry a water bottle as it can help to quench your thirst also. An off-beat hike in the cradle of nature with some natural spring can provide you with some sweet and satiating water. So don’t forget to carry water bottle next time!
- Water Bowl
By, following the above advice you might give a shot to carry water bottle but where will you serve the water? Definitely, you won’t get any container or utensil in the middle of your hike! Beside this, you won’t feel good to serve your favorite animal, food, on land. A decent size water bowl will be enough for your lab’s need. Plastics or stainless steel utensil will work but plastic is preferable as it is lighter and much more handy.
- Enough Food
Carry enough dog food for your journey. You won’t feel cheerful by giving leftover food to your ground. Moreover, dog food is built according to your tyke’s need and it will provide all those necessary nutrients which it requires for a energetic hike! Dog food will also ensure a steady, firmer stool and a disease free weekend. You can take dry, grain free dog food for your lab which is compact and pretty handy.
- 6-foot leash
It is not astounding to know that your dog will create ruckus in the hike. In this case, lease becomes a prerequisite item that should be on your check list. You can get a delicate a firmer lease for your dog. Don’t buy those long chains for hike. Hike is meant to refresh the mind so don’t spoil your pooch’s mood by binding it with long chains. Buy something which is little cozy and in the same time, robust.
- Longer 20-30 feet leash
Now, being an understanding owner, you would like to allow your lab to spend some quality time with nature. For this, you should consider a longer leash which will make sure that your lab is not out of bound. During any trip, the excitement in any dog’s mind is at brink and at that time sky is the only limit for it. So, buy a longer leash for the enhancement of his experience.
You should get some toys on board. Toys will help you to engage your lab. You can play fetch in a meadow. Toys are a great catalyst for increasing your lab’s excitement and as an owner it will also help you to spend some quality time.
Treats are very necessary for your hike. In the height of ecstasy, your lab can forget your command and can go insane. So it’s better to carry some treats to trap your lab in case of any mishappening.
- Poop bags
This may sound little gross but you should carry poop bags in case you are traveling to any eco zone. Some locations don’t allow dog’s litter and may also get charged for it. To avoid any non imperative charge, carry few sets of poop bag to solve these problems. You won’t believe but your dog’s poop can deter local habitat. Your dog poop can contain certain pathogens, from which the local specie might not be immunized. Now you know the reasons for carrying poop bags!
Alright! You might carry leash, water bottle, water bowl, treats, food, poop bags but, where will you keep all these! Hence carry a back pack for your own convenience.
2) First-Aid requirements
If you are going on a long hike then you should carry a dog’s first-aid kit. In the middle of a pleasant trip, health problems should not deter your experience so carry these items for betterment.
- Eye Wash
Eye wash or saline solution is lifesaving if your hound has accidentally trapped any insect of twig in his eyes. Washing with stream water or any other water source can expose them to various kind of microorganism.
Bandages are a must add item in the first aid kit because in case of any minor bruise or cut they can prohibit the excessive flow of blood.
- Pest controlling sprays
Ticks and mosquitoes can irritate your hound so it is better to keep some spray. In case you don’t want to spoil your hiking mood, then spray them and see the magic.
- Pain killers or anti inflammatory
Anti inflammatory medicines are useful for both the owner and lab. Dogs seldom need pain killer but it is advisable to keep it handy!
These are effective against allergic reactions that can occur due to the exposure of different kind of plants and animals.
- Pliers and tools
Pliers are useful for extracting any nail or other kind of unwanted stuff that can cause pain to your tyke.
- Emergency blankets
You should keep them with you for an extra safety. Remember cold weather is a great foe of lab!
- Medical Staplers
Medical staplers can clot the blood flow. It can help to avoid extreme circumstances where every second is important for saving a life.
These were some of the tips and tricks that you should keep in mind while planning for a hike. Labradors are a very easy going kind of dog breed so you can take them for a rugged and tough hike. Your dog will like the shift in the environment but remember that dog’s age quickly, don’t push your lab for a hike if his/her age is more than 8-9 years. Follow these essential tips and make the most out of your lovely experience, after all, you and your dog deserve a pleasant companionship. For more interesting and knowledgeable articles, stay tuned to our website.