Being very sociable and affectionate dogs, Great Danes surely wouldn’t like to miss a chance to enjoy a camping adventure with their owners (and since you’re reading this, that just might be you). Who would’ve thought our four-legged buddies like the outdoors just as much as we do? Well, absolutely everyone!
Taking your dogs along on a camping trip isn’t something you shouldn’t prepare for. They require a great deal of attention! Knowing what to do, and what to bring along is crucial!
You’ll need to safely transport your Great Dane(s) to the destination and make a pit stop every once in a while so they can relieve themselves, or enjoy a treat. Bring your own drinking water to avoid your doggies experiencing stomach-related issues. Once you arrive, make sure they stay hydrated and safe. Also, don’t forget to bring pick-up bags.
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A couple of cool facts about the Gentle Giants
Before we start, it might be good to mention a couple of interesting facts about these majestic creatures. Some of these characteristics make them great company, whether you’re going camping or casually strolling through the neighborhood. So, what’s so special about Great Danes?
- As some of you might already know, Great Danes are the tallest dogs to inhabit our planet.
- Contrary to what some folks might think at first, Great Danes are very soft-hearted (hence their nickname we mentioned in the title of this paragraph).
- They just love kids! Great Danes are well-known to be very protective and loyal! Although you shouldn’t approve of unsupervised interaction between them and your toddler(s). This, of course, stands for all dog breeds.
- As an addition to the fact we’ve mentioned above, Great Danes are great for families with babies since they’re not that noisy.
- Great Danes appreciate being outside! Also, daily exercising is a must.
- Their food and medical fees will cost you a bit, much more than if you had a smaller dog. Big breeds equal big needs, as some would say.
- Unfortunately, Gentle Giants don’t have a big life expectancy (somewhere between 7 to 10 years).
On the road with Great Dane
Let’s say you’ve figured out where you want to go camping this weekend. That might’ve inspired you to start reading this article in the first place. Before setting up camp accompanied by your best buddy, you’ll have to drive to the campsite. Unless, of course, you’re camping in your backyard or something. When you finish reading this text, you’ll find out that option doesn’t sound so silly at all.
So, what do we have here? First things first, we have to point out the fact that Great Danes are fantastic travel companions. If you prepare for the trip nicely, that is. Here’s what you need to take into consideration before hitting the road.
Safety measures first!
Before doing anything else, you’ll need to be sure your four-legged pal is traveling safely. You can do that by using a car harness to strap your Great Dane to the backseat. Or, if you have the option, securing the crate in the cargo area of your car might do the trick. Of course, you want to be ensured that the products you’re using are top-quality (your dog deserves nothing less).
Make sure your dog doesn’t feel uncomfortable
In order to prepare your Great Dane for the road trip ahead, it might be best if you were to take your buddy a couple of times for a short drive around the town, to a pet store or the park (someplace where the dog feels at ease). That way, you’ll lessen the chances of your Great Dane feeling anxious while on the road.
Also, if you notice that the dog’s not feeling all too well while in the car, you might want to ask your vet for safe solutions that will greatly reduce your Great Dane’s anxiety.
Pack some water and snacks for the road
Since you’ll be probably be confined to the car for a decent period of time, your dog will get hungry or thirsty at some point. Before you start the engine, make sure you’ve packed gallons of water, a bowl from which your buddy will drink, and sealable food containers. Also, don’t forget to pack some treats you know your Great Dane appreciates, to put it that way.
Pit stops from time to time
No one likes being confined to a small area for a longer period. Especially – dogs. Make sure you make a pit stop from time to time (for ten minutes, every two hours or so). Your Great Dane will have the opportunity to enjoy some fresh air and stretch its legs. And, of course, we all know what pit stops are mostly for, so give your pets some time to fulfill their natural needs.
Camping with Great Dane
On the road with Great Dane, Camping with Great Dane: it almost sounds like parts of a not-so-popular children’s book franchise. Bad jokes aside, we’ve come to the main issue of this article. Ready?
Set up a trial camp in your backyard
This is where the whole “setting up camp in your backyard” thing loses its silliness. If you’ve never camped before, this might be a good chance to set up your new tent for the first time.
No one will doubt the fact that dogs like routine. By setting up the tents in your backyard for a week or so before you eventually leave for the camping grounds, your dog will have a chance to get used to the picture. Try to spend as much as you can outside, and see how your Great Dane will react to the new circumstances.
Now, if you don’t have a backyard – it’s not the end of the world. We’re sure your Great Dane will do fine even without this trial period, being introduced to the concept of camping cold turkey. Or, maybe you’d want to try fixing the tents out in the living room of your apartment?
You might want to consider bringing your own water supply
Some dogs are prone to get diarrhea when their water is changed. Having that in mind, it might be best to bring your own water supply. You don’t want your buddy’s trip ruined because of stomach-related issues.
Make sure your Great Dane has access to water all the time. Camping season tends to be very hot and big dogs easily get thirsty. Especially if you’re planning to take on longer hiking routes (more about that below).
Arrange your trip so the closest vet emergency is not far away
You never know what’s gonna happen in the outdoors. In most cases: probably nothing, but it’s best to rest assured knowing your closest vet emergency is not on the other side of the state. A basic first-aid kid (containing antiseptic wipes, gauze pads, etc.) should be somewhere in your cargo, too.
Don’t forget to bring some toys and blankets
This one probably goes without saying. Just like you need your books for the road, your doggies too will want to have some time by themselves, doing something they enjoy. Packing their favorite toys is a must! Also, bring a couple of your dog’s favorite blankies!
Additional tip: since we’ve mentioned your lovely books, here’s how you’ll protect them while camping.
Lay a thick layer of tarp on the bottom of your tent
Just so your Great Dane’s awe-inspiring nails don’t go through the bottom of your tent, you might want to lay a thick layer of tarp on it. You really don’t want to invite all the insects hanging around to join your tent party.
While we’re at it, it’s best that we mention your dog(s) should sleep with you in the tent. They’ll feel much safer that way, and you won’t have to worry about them encountering wild animals in the middle of the night.
Camping 101: Leave No Trace
It’s very important you apply the leave-no-trace philosophy to your dogs. In other words: pick up after your Great Dane. Pet waste is a serious problem that affects popular camping spots. Not only is it harmful to other animals, but it’s also a health hazard for humans (especially children). Don’t forget to pack some pick-up bags!
Check your dog(s) for ticks
Ticks are probably the least interesting camping neighbors ever. As if anyone needs to tell you that, right? Luckily, Great Danes are short-haired and it’s not that hard to spot ticks trying to make friends with them by all means.
Ticks can lead to all kinds of diseases (Lyme disease being of them). Check your Great Dane for ticks constantly and remove them as soon as possible.
Taking a hike?
If you’re planning to do a bit of hiking with your Great Dane once you’re in the outdoors, make sure they’re prepared for them. If it’s a longer hike that you have in mind, try doing shorter routes with your doggie first.
Needless to say: bring a lot of water, and pick-up bags. Also, there’s nothing like a well-balanced meal after a long hike.
Camping with Great Dane – a conclusion
By remembering some of the tips we’ve listed above, you and your four-legged friend(s) are bound to enjoy a fantastic, stress-free camping adventure. With the right kind of attitude and a leave-no-trace set of ethics, you’ll provide an example for generations of dog-loving campers to come. If you’re camping with Great Dane anytime soon, we’re sure you’ll have the time of your life! Cooler temperatures, marvelous autumn imagery, less crowded campsites, and the company of your loved ones – what more could anyone possibly want?