At The Dyrt, we share camping tips from our community of campers and campgrounds. With so many campers staying home, we continue to share this info so you can plan future camping trips across the U.S.

Bringing your #DyrtDog camping can make the trip a lot more fun. We’re admittedly obsessed with our pups here at The Dyrt, and a trip just doesn’t feel complete if we’re not camping with dogs.

But even we’re willing to admit that our dogs aren’t always on their best behavior. And not everyone loves dogs as much as we do.

It’s important for all of us to remember proper campground etiquette with our canine counterparts, so we can all continue to enjoy their company while camping.

Visit Dog-Friendly Campgrounds

Unfortunately, not all campsites or hiking trails allow dogs. So before heading out with your furry friend, be sure to check if the campsite you picked allows dogs on-site.

Wondering where to find dog-friendly campsites? Bring Fido is a great resource to find dog-positive campsites, as well as other nearby places that will welcome your pooch, like parks, restaurants, and breweries. You can also search for campgrounds on The Dyrt, and check “Features” to find out if a campground is dog-friendly. Reviews from other campers with dogs are especially helpful.

No Waste Left Behind

No matter where you venture when camping with dogs, be sure to pack plenty of bags to pick up their waste. Contributing to fecal coliform in nearby waterways or underground water sources is a big no-no at campgrounds. Not to mention, leaving waste around is a sure-fire way to upset your fellow campers.

Follow Leash Laws

It’s always fun to let your dog run free like the wild wolf within. However, some campsites are strict about enforcing leash laws. And for good reason. Letting your dog run wild is often not only illegal and irritating for other campers, it can also be dangerous for your pup. Unleashed dogs on a campground are more vulnerable to injury or dangerous situations like consuming food scraps that may be poisonous.

Keeping your dog leashed while camping is the best way to keep them safe. But be sure to bring your dog with you wherever you go. Leaving a dog tied up can put them in a sticky situation with kids and predators, and open them up for injury if they get wrapped up in their leash.

Camping with dogs: be sure to follow the leash law!

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We understand that it’s a bummer to tie your rambunctious pet to a short leash. They just wanna run! That’s why we love Ruffwear’s Knot-A-Hitch. The Knot-A-Hitch is perfect when car camping with dogs, and allows your pup to roam around your campsite while still being leashed.

Keep Your Dog Busy (and Tired)

A tired dog is a happy dog. If you’re planning a relaxed weekend around the campfire, be sure to bring plenty of toys for your dog to play with. Taking your dog on walks or hikes throughout the day is also a great way to get their energy out — even if it’s just around the camp ground. Your dog and camping neighbors will thank you.

Make Your Dog Visible at Night

When the glow of the campfire becomes one of your few sources of light, it’s important to make your dog visible. Nitehowl LED Safety Necklace can help you avoid tripping over a sleepy pooch. And if they do run off, it will help you find them in the dark.

Bring Plenty of Treats

If the campground is a new experience for your dog, they’re going to need some practice before they’re on their best behavior. And all dog-owners know that our pooches are better-behaved when they’re incentivized. Reward your dogs for good campground behavior with healthy treats, like Zuke’s. Zuke’s has a variety of natural treats that are free of corn, wheat, soy, and artificial colors, giving your dog the energy for more adventure.

Venture Further for More Freedom

If you’re looking for a little more backcountry freedom when camping with dogs, Bureau of Land Management (BLM) land is a great place to start. BLM land tends to be more dog friendly than national and state park campgrounds and even offers off-leash hiking trails.

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Today is your real birthday, little one. Your 6th Birthday. It's hard to believe it's been almost 5 years since we first saw you. They warned us that you were smart…that you were determined…that you were a little bit of trouble… In that shelter, you figured out that they'd pull a rope attached to a little trap door to let you into the outside part of your enclosure each day. But one afternoon you decided that you didn't want to go back inside so you jumped up and chewed through that rope and when they'd gone to pull all the doors open, there you were…still outside…probably smiling in that telltale way you smile when you've outsmarted us all. That was the kind of dog you were, they said. It was a little daunting…taking on a destructive, dominant, clever, curious boy. But I understood you from the moment I saw you. Because we're always chomping at the bit you and I…circling in our confinements…scratching at the door…wondering what's next…stewing in our anxiousness until we're back in those wide open spaces where we can breathe… Yes, we all need someone who understands our kind of wild…who encourages and nurtures and celebrates our kind of wild. I promised I would do that for you, sweet boy, and in return, my goodness, have you ever done that for me… Happy Birthday, Dags 💛

A post shared by Brianna Madia (@briannamadia) on

Dogs love the outdoors, and most campers love dogs. But let’s all remember that our dogs aren’t perfect, and neither are we. So taking extra precautions to keep your dog safe and well-behaved on the campground will make the experience more fun for you, your dog, and your campground neighbors.

Meet The Dyrt team’s #DyrtDogs! We’d love to meet yours, too. Join The Dog-Friendly Campfire on Facebook for more photos and conversation about camping with our beloved dog-friends.


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  • Kate Schoof

    Kate Schoof

    Kate has spent much of her life either playing in or working to protect outdoor spaces. Her favorite outdoor activities always involve being in, on, or near bodies of water. However, she is a sucker for a beautiful desert view. You can bet that when she is not submerging herself in the wilderness, she is probably practicing aerial acrobatics or spending time with her husband and pups.