There's no better hiking companion than your four-legged best friend
Hiking is a great way to take advantage of the chilly, sunny days of winter. Many dog owners agree that no one makes a more willing and eager hiking buddy than a dog.
Going for hikes with your dog is a great way for both of you to get some exercise while enjoying all that the season has to offer. The American Kennel Club offers tips on what to know and bring along when you and your dog hit the trails together:
• Know your breed. The amount of physical activity that your dog needs is heavily influenced by what breed he is. A high-energy breed, such as a border collie, might have a much easier time on a hike than a lower-energy breed.
• Leash. Many hiking trails require dogs to be on leash, but even if your trail doesn't have a leash requirement, it's a good idea to have one with you. Keeping your dog on a leash will help if you need to steer him away from anything along the trail, such as poisonous plants or other animals.
• Water and travel bowl. Hiking can be exhausting for your dog, so make sure you bring water for him.
• Bags for cleanup. Always bring bags with you to clean up after your dog even if you don't think you'll be out that long. Your dog will eventually need a bathroom break, and it's good to be prepared with cleanup bag.
• First aid kit. It is best to always have some essentials with you in case of an emergency.
For more tips, visit the AKC at akc.org