Exploring the backcountry of British Columbia with your pets is one of the best vacations ever, but it’s important to be safe and responsible. When planning your adventure ask yourself the following questions:
- Does the campground allow pets?
- Does the campground have shade?
- Is my pet Microchipped and do they have a suitable ID Tag?
- Is my pet fit and healthy, and up for travelling?
Dogs and Wildlife
The biggest hazard with dogs and camping is the potential for wildlife encounters. Pets are generally wildlife attractants therefore its important to have them leashed and under control at all times.
Even the best-behaved dogs, can’t be guaranteed to contain themselves when faced with wildlife, their fight or flight response is hard-wired. I always take the dogs out exploring and recently we were doing a hike down to Raft Cove and up ahead there was a bear on the path. Luckily, we were downwind of the bear so the bear smelt us and saw us before we saw him. This situation could have ended a lot differently if the dogs were off leash. So don’t risk it, keep them on a leash.
Pet Restrictions on Trails and Beaches
It’s always best to check ahead of time whether dogs are allowed on certain trails. For example, on the Cape Scott Trail (located on the north of Vancouver Island), dogs are only allowed on the trail as far as San Josef Bay, they are not allowed any further. Similarly, dogs aren’t allowed on some beaches during the peak summer months, so my recommendation is do your homework!
Key Rules to Remember
- Don’t leave your pet unattended at your campground
- Ensure your pet is secured when traveling
- Take frequent breaks on long distance car rides
- Don’t leave your pet in a parked car in warm weather
- Keep them leashed on trails and in campgrounds
- Clean up after your pet
Don’t Forget to Pack the Essentials!
- Their bed / blanket
- Toys and bones
- Water bowl and water
- An extra long leash for camp or a tie in / collapsible fence area
- Poo Bags – don’t be that guy!
- Pet first aid kit
- Collar / Harness / Leash
- ID Tags
- Emergency Vet Care Contact Information
We hope you enjoy your adventures together and remember, we have a pet friendly overland vehicle for rent!