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Dog Question
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David Olsen

Locale: Steptoe Butte
Daisy on 03/28/2012 14:35:22 MDT Print View

Where did you get Daisy?

My dog was named Lady Anne. She only lived a year due to a congenital defect. She was
all heart, beautiful and very fun loving.

Mary D
(hikinggranny) - MLife
Dog Question on 03/28/2012 17:53:22 MDT Print View

After a rather adventurous drive home from Seattle back in September, during which my dog almost literally exploded--all over the car--thanks to giardia, I have to agree with Sarah. It happened about halfway home, and I drove the rest of the way with all windows open and stopping about every 20 minutes to let the poor dog out of the car for more explosions. Once I got home, it took me several hours to clean up my car. It took a course of Flagyl before the poor dog recovered!

I used to filter my dog's water, but after a while he started preferring stream water to anything in his bowl. I have, however, gone back to filtering his water and making sure that he drinks as little as possible from streams and lakes. If he drinks his fill from his water bowl, he only takes a few laps from stream or lake, so at least his exposure is less.

Sarah Kuhn
(SCKuhn) - MLife

Locale: Mountainous Ohio
Dog Question on 03/29/2012 12:28:25 MDT Print View

Daisy as far as we know is a 'pure bred pound hound', got her at the local dog pound July of 2008, figure she was barely a year old when we got her.

Unfortunately she isn't our backpacking dog... she doesn't play so well with others, so she tends to stay home where she is familiar. But a VERY loving dog to her family. Quite the protective 'junk yard dog' we call her... very street smart! :-)

daisy lawn

Mark Regalia
(markr) - MLife

Locale: Santa Cruz
My experience with dogs and Giardia on 03/29/2012 13:15:12 MDT Print View

I have one dog who got Giardia. I was never sure whether he had it when I adopted him or on a camping trip I went on right after that. He was picked up running wild in livestock country so he had lots of opportunities there. No matter, my vet told me that dogs get Giardia once. After they get over it they don't get it again. I have never bothered to confirm that. It's been ten years and he has not gotten it again. I never restrict my dogs drinking sources.

He is the only one of my three dogs to have gotten Giardia in some fifteen years of packing with dogs in the Sierra. Nor have any of my friends have had the problem with their dogs. In the same time I have known a lot of people who have gotten it in the same region.

David Olsen

Locale: Steptoe Butte
Daisy on 03/29/2012 17:59:09 MDT Print View

If you do take her, she will do a good job of letting you know where all the wildlife is.

My hound found a lion kill in a tree, quail, a wild pig, lots of deer, and chased a bear
out of the yard. Good to keep them on leash or do a lot of training beforehand with
treats and an electric collar.

They are very durable and do make good distance hiking dogs.

Dan Magdoff
(highsierraguy) - F

Locale: Northern California
fitting new dog pack onto your dog on 04/11/2012 00:44:16 MDT Print View

hey all
So I finally got around to getting Pepper her first very own pack. I went with the REI classic suggested, and it seems like a great pack.

Although the people at REI can be VERY helpful in fitting pack to a person, they didnt know much about a dog pack. I'm pretty sure I got her the right size, and it seems to fit nice, but there are a lot of adjustable straps. How should all of those be adjusted? whats a good fit? Im assuming tight enough to hold snugly in place, but loose enough to not restrict movement or chest expansion when deeply breathing.

Any other suggestions?


Ray Rackiewicz
(Rrackiewicz) - F
Ruffwear on 04/11/2012 23:41:54 MDT Print View

I've tried numerous packs and I love the RuffWear Pallisades.

Pros: Sturdy. Comfortable. The packs mounts to a hardness so when you take a break you only have to unclip the bag assembly from the harness to relieve some weight from your pooch while resting and don't have to fight the whole darn thing on and off. Tons of storage. High quality craftsmanship. Doesn't rub my dog raw if fit correctly. We trail run and fastpack and short of him rolling over in the grass the pack is very steady.

Cons: over engineered with rugged materials and thus heavy. Worthless water bladders. No, weight distribution of water in both bags so you have to keep the weight even manually.

Great pack!

Mary D
(hikinggranny) - MLife
Dog packs on 04/12/2012 00:20:45 MDT Print View

As with people, dog pack fit is pretty individual. Not all dogs of the same size and weight are built the same!

Lengthy evaluation of dog packs:

I use an older version of the Ruffwear Palisades on my dog Hysson. I replaced the mylar water bladders (really hard to open and close) with 1 liter Platypus bottles, which are quite a bit lighter. I really like having the pack detachable from his harness so I can remove the pack and help him with the harness on difficult sections. It also makes it a lot easier to just remove the pack bags at rest stops.

The way Hysson jams his pack into rocks and trees, he really needs a tough pack, even though it's heavier than I'd like.

Ty Ty

Locale: SE US
My dog on 04/12/2012 08:10:10 MDT Print View

I did 15 miles (my longest distance ever) with my 18-20lb terrier mix a couple weekends ago in nice weather. Towards the end he showed signs of tiring, I wouldn't push it much further. How did I know he was tiring? #1 was I keep him on a retractable leash and normally he is at the end of the leash looking back at me like I am holding him back, he will get all ancy if he hears a lizard or squirrel off the side of the trail. Towards the end of the 15 miles he was lagging behind and ignoring lizards.

Couple things...

In my opinion it is irresponsible for a TON of reasons to hike with a dog off leash. Your dog could go after dangerous wildlife (bears, skunks, porcupine, poisonous snake, etc), your dog could harass wildlife, harass other hikers, harass other hikers dogs. Most dogs will tire out running up ahead then back to you, effectively doubling or more the distance they hike so if you are going 15 they are going 30-45 miles. Also puddles, most dogs will drink out of nasty, stale, mosquito infested puddles which I have read there are several fatal diseases they can get from those. I could probably go on but suffice it to say I believe in leashing my dog. I like the retractable leashes because it manages the slack so I don't have to. If I see other hikers coming I call him back in and lock him in by my side. Also I like him up ahead of me a good bit so I am not tripping over him if he stops to smell something. When I get to camp I can put the handle on a stick, stake it to the ground, whatever and the leash manages the slack and he can still move around.

As far as water, I let him drink straight from clean looking streams and moving water sources, I use the leash to not allow him to drink from puddles and stagnant water (which he will try to do).

As far as a water bowl, I carry either a small disposable Tupperware container (the thin kind) in my pocket so I can easily get to it, give him some water.

With my dog he won't eat his dry food when out hiking, he gets excited when traveling, hiking, hunting, whatever and just will go days without eating so I bring him those small packets of soft food to put on his dry food, mix it up then he eats it.

Sleeping he sleeps on my backpack with my driducks rain jacket, fleece, shirt or whatever under him so he has something to sink into. If it is cold I might bring him a little piece of a blanket I cut up for him.

Final advice is pay attention to the subtle differences in how your dog is acting. Dogs usually love their humans and will do anything for them include dying for them. I have grown up around hunting and hunting dogs and I have seen retrievers sitting in freezing water all day with ice forming on their private parts, ears and face but if you tried to get them to stop hunting they will pull away and fight you to stay doing what they are doing. I have heard stories of hog hunting dogs, pit bulls and terriers that will get slashes and have their guts hanging out and want to keep going, keep hunting. Dogs don't always know what the deal is they just love doing outdoor stuff, love being with their human, love pleasing their human so just because your dog is up for doing something, don't take that as a sure sign that they are fine doing it.