Essential Equipment for Camping and Exploring with Dogs *work in progress*

Cat keeping watch from her tent!
If you are new to adventuring with your dog or have only gone as far as doing local walkies at the park before then it can be tricky to know what you need to buy or take with you when having your adventures. Luckily we are here to help.
For advice about travelling with your dog click here it covers the basics like seatbelts, essential item kits and ID (Though I will talk more about some of it here too!)

I will split it in to 2 sections - 1) Day adventures (Where you go home at the end!) and 2) Camping or holidays (Where you sleep somewhere else!)

Day Adventures 
Now there are some things you will need to consider even if you are only going out for the day to a country park, a beach or an attraction. It's always best to be prepared. 

If you have read the "travelling with your dog" section I mentioned above then you will know we recommend an "essential items kit" which should include anything you might need during the travelling or when you first arrive; such as poop bags, a lead, water, a portion of food, towel, blanket or coat and a 1st aid kit (That's what's in our kit!) 

This is the same bag we have - except ours is red and has our blog name on it with a greyhound silhouette - It's 42 x 31 x 21 cm dimension and is produced by bagbase (we love bagbase bags!) we got ours from our friends at Dogs n Dubs  who print lots of pawsome designs on their products - you can choose from their existing range or have a item specially made to your needs (likes our bag which like I said has our blog on it - we also have their tshirts and hoodies too!) It's a pawfect size for both day trips and longer adventures and we keep ours stocked so it's easy to grab as we head out on an adventure or walkies. It has the single main section plus the front pocket - which is handy for the likes of poobags or anything you might need access to quick and easy. The straps adjust quite well so would fit most people comfortably and are padded too for extra comfort on long walks. 

The contents of my bag!
The contents of the bag may differ depending on where you are going/what you are doing but mine always has my water bottle, my coat and my 1st aid kit (Always be prepared!) 
If we are going to be out all day we add in a portion of food, a blanket and some treats and if I'm likely to get wet and muddy then a small towel goes in to! 

Obviously it's up to you what brand or type of food you take, we usually take a tin when feeding on the go as it's more convenient than carrying kibble and we usually have tins available at home as I have a bit of tinned mixed with my dinner every day. However we find the food trays such as the ones Forthglade or Nature Diet produce even more convenient as you can just pop the lid and eat out the tray and throw it away after which saves on carrying a bowl and empty can around with you all day! 

Also both options are really nommy!

We always pack my coat when we go out as this is England and you never know what the weather is going to do. My personal coat is made by Milgi Coats  who specialise in sighthound coats but also do bespoke items for other shaped customers (They have done terriers and staffies and giant breeds too!)

I find their coats an excellent fit and it stays put when I'm doing my sniffing or zooming and I look PAWSOME in it too. Check out my full review of the items here 

Now the 1st aid kit is one that is very important to us as I am prone to silly little injuries such as ripped dew claws, cut pads and pulled muscles. Ours is one we made up ourselves to meet my needs but you can buy ready made ones such as the ones our friends "Rhodes to Safety" produce. The most important items (in our opinion) are vetwrap, antiseptic wipes and cotton wool. We also carry a supply of canine pain killers for those owey moments. (We also carry a small hooman 1st aid kit as well for those moments when my hoomans bleed)

We generally carry my blankie with us; any blankie will do but best if it's one that can be folded and popped in your bag so it's with you wherever you go. Same goes for the towel. Any small towel will do but I have a nice pink one with a pic of a doggy on it (same as the one in the foto above!).

And ofcourse it's important to be wearing my tag collar complete with ID tag and to take along my walkies collar and lead (even if I'm doing off lead walkies - better to be safe than lost eh?!)

Also being the fashionista hound that I am I usually pack a bandanna or two from either Milgi Coats or Jenn's Knits  (My 2 bandanna suppliers!)

So that concludes my essentials for day adventures list - You can add or subtract items to suit your own needs too. For example in summer I usually pack my special "keep cool" coat instead of my star coat.

Camping or Holidays 

I will focus mainly on camping in a tent for this section however most of it will apply to holidays in a caravan, lodge or B&B too.

Obviously first port of call will be a tent. Now these come in lots and lots of styles and sizes and it can be real tricky to work out which kind you need. Personally we recommend you go for one a size up from what you need - if there's 2 adults and a dog then go for 4 berth or bigger. We started off with a 4 man tent with communal "day area" which was a greyt size for our needs but being the cheap model it went to the tent equivalent of rainbow bridge and so we upgraded. to a new model. The camping shop was having a sale and a nice 6 man tent with large day area, storage and bug nets was screaming our name and so we decided to add it to our family - it's a lovely tent. However it was not a wise purchase because mostly I camp with just my hooman girl and although I'm pretty talented I cant erect a tent to save my life which means 1 hooman wrestling with a rather large, rather tangled tent in a large field in terrential downpour. Although the tent got up (1st time unaided but after several hours, 2nd time with the help of the lady who owned the campsite!) it was alot of hard work and with us only usually staying on each site for a day or two it is more effort than it is worth alot of the time. So think wisely before making your decision.
with our very nice but very fiddly latest model

I always make sure I pack my PJ's or fleece when going on sleep over adventures. As you can see in the photo above I have some nice ones. I have various designs of nightwear. Theres my 4 legged camouflage PJ's from Dogstogz  and my 2 legged heart PJ's also from Dogstogz, then theres my new pink polar bear fleece coat from Milgi Coats and their soopa fluffy hearts one - it's sorta like a dressing gown material. They are all soopa warm and luffly and keep me snugglie over night or on an evening sitting outside the tent watching the sunset or in the morning sat eating my breakfast listening to nature.

It's also a soopa idea to have a "tie out stake" to attach your lead to if you want to sit outside - it's also helpful when hoomans setting up or packing away so you can keep an eye on them whilst they know you are safe and secure - alot of campsites (most probably all of them!) say you need be on a lead at all times so this is a good way of doing it without having to be physically held by a hooman at all times. I use mine when I sit outside to eat breakfast or to do a spot of sunbathing or if my girl needs get herself dressed or tidy around inside the tent or anything that means I'm outside whilst she's inside or otherwise engaged (I do have a tendency to walk in and out though meaning she has to keep running to untangle me as I go inside or then running to grab me when I decide to go back outside! She says I'm a monkey but I'm not. I'm a greyhound!) They also sale  the cables to go with these (some brands supply the cable too!) which is usually a long red cable (about 6 metres) with a clip on each end to secure you to it! They're good but we just use my training lead as I dont need 6 metres and we worry about me getting my legs tangled in so much cable.

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