May 26, 2020

Are you and your dog planning your post-shelter-in-place adventures for summer? Our furry pals have provided so much comfort and companionship this spring. Why not reward them with a fun camping trip? 

Whether you and your furry buddy are experienced trailblazers or this is your first time camping with your dog, you’ll find lots of helpful tips in this guide to dog-friendly camping in the Pacific Northwest.

Finding dog-friendly campgrounds

owner with golden retriever dog in backpack 

The Pacific Northwest is a great place for camping in general, and luckily, there’s no shortage of gorgeous campgrounds that allow pets. But will they be open this summer?

Some national parks and facilities temporarily closed when the coronavirus arrived in the US, and many campgrounds stopped allowing overnight camping. Oregon and Washington have started to increase access to parks in a phased approach. 

So depending on when you’re planning to camp, some campgrounds may be open and others might still be closed. The Oregon Parks and Recreation Department said that high-density parks in places like the Gorge will likely be some of the last to reopen

Visit the Oregon State Parks website and check with individual parks to see what’s open and when. 

Tip: Book your campsite early! As eager campers flock to nature after social distancing at home, there could be a shortage of available campsites.

Camping safely during COVID-19

dog on camping trip with owner during COVID-19

As things begin to open again, many of us are yearning to plan an outdoor escape. Camping in a remote location will likely be a great way to get out of the house while avoiding close contact with others — except your doggo, of course! 

Even better, spending time in nature is great for your mental and physical health, and it may even boost your immune system.

Tips for a fun and safe camping trip:

  • Follow your state’s rules and recommendations for camping
  • If and when camping is allowed in your area, continue to observe social distancing guidelines as you soak up the sun 
  • Camp close to home to limit travel
  • Avoid crowded campsites and look for more secluded ones
  • Pack everything you’ll need (including plenty of dog food and water) to avoid extra trips to the store
  • Bring your own soap, water, hand sanitizer, and toilet paper

What dog camping gear should you bring?

The basics

Make sure you pack dog food, extra poop bags, and plenty of water for your four-legged buddy. You’ll also want to bring a leash. A long line like this one is perfect for hiking on nearby trails because it gives your dog plenty of space to explore. A doggy first aid kit is another essential safety item. You can also bring your dog’s favorite toy to ease boredom and homesickness.

RELATEDImportant Supplies to Prepare for Pet Emergencies

More advanced dog camping gear

Dog sleeping in yellow dog sleeping bag with snow-capped mountains in the background

Here are a few items that will make your camping trip even more fun for you and your dog:

  • Collapsible travel bowls are easy to pack and carry with you.
  • The Hurtta Outback Dreamer Sleeping Bag is perfect for cold nights and also doubles as a regular sleeping mat.
  • A dog zipline keeps your dog safely in place when you string it up between any two fixed points in a vehicle, at your campsite, or even on a boat.
  • Bring insect repellent that’s safe for you and your dog ( this one can be used on animals over 20 lbs).
  • Going somewhere rainy or muddy? Keep your furry friend warm and dry with a dog jacket
  • For hot, sunny days, a cooling vest and dog sunscreen will keep your pet comfortable. 
  • Keep paws safe from hot concrete and rock with summer dog booties and/or paw protection wax.
  • This water-resistant dog bed is perfect for just about any outdoor location and rolls up easily like a sleeping bag.
  • If you often go camping with a dog who is used to sleeping in a crate, consider investing in a dog tent to give your pet their own private quarters!

RELATED: Everything You Need to Know About Backpacking with Dogs

Fun camping activities with your dog

hiking with dog on leash

Go hiking

Many campgrounds that allow dogs have wonderful pet-friendly hiking trails and some even have designated off-leash areas. Just double-check the regulations before you bring your pup. Read our recent post about getting the most out of a hike with your dog!

RELATED: 10 Tips for Hiking with Dogs & the Gear to Bring

Play

Playtime is extra fun in the great outdoors! Chew toys are great if your dog needs to be on a leash.

Go to the beach

Are you camping on the coast or close to a lake or river that allows dogs? Bring your canine pal to the water and let them splash around. Just don’t forget to bring a towel! Or better yet, this Soggy Doggy Super Shammy is 5x more absorbent than regular towels.

Relax

If you have a cuddly pet, they’ll love curling up in the tent with you while you read a book or listen to music.

dog sleeping on bed outdoors while camping

Have a great trip!

Do you have everything you need for your camping trip? King Duke’s is a private, family-run business that cares about pets like family. As dog parents in Beaverton, we select all our pet products with love and make sure that everything we sell is made with premium quality ingredients and materials that promote pet health and happiness. 

Browse our huge selection of pet gear and stock up for your camping trip. If you have questions about our products or you need something that we don’t carry, please reach out and let us know!


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