Keen for a four-legged friend (of the dog variety, that is!) to join you on your wild camping adventures? Juno, four legged friend of Sussex Chief Queen Sarah Rudder, shares his top tips on how it’s done, whether with bivvy or with a tent.
Wild Camping with dogs
1. Make sure we’ve had lots of exercise walking to the camping spot so we’re ready for a good night’s sleep. If we’re heading out for a really long day, then we generally like a good nap at lunch time. Maybe even a bit of your sandwich and a chunk of the doggy version of Kendal Mint Cake to keep me going.
2. We like to know where our sleeping space is. Sarah carries an extra camping mat for me and puts a travel towel on top of it to make me a bed right next to hers.
3. If your four-legged friend is anything like me, don’t expect them to go to bed until you do and watch out for the morning wake-up with a friendly lick in the face.
4. We have a tendency to chase things so if we’re bivvying, rather than in the tent, it’s very sensible to attach us to something for the night. You could attach yourself to us but if you want a reasonable night’s sleep then carry a cable and stake to attach us to. It helps to keep us out of mischief!
5. Don’t forget to pack dinner and breakfast for us. If you like, you can train your four-legged friend to carry their own backpack with their own supplies in.
6. Mostly we camp in wild places so I’m not disturbed by passers-by. Occasionally I like to let out a low growl in the middle of the night but there’s never actually been anyone there, I just do it for fun and I think it adds a little something to the adventure.
7. If you get up to go for a pee in the night expect to find us in or on your cosy bed when you get back – that’s just dog law!
All dogs are different of course. I’m not particularly well behaved or well trained – sometimes, I’m a total hooligan. But like most dogs, I’m happy as long as I’ve got a full belly, had some exercise and am with my favourite human.
So give it a try with your own furry friend, generally we’re big fans of adventuring and great company if you’re travelling solo.
Sarah Rudder, Chief Sussex Queen, is an adventurer in life and learning – long distance hiker, wild camper, yogi, bookworm, massive foodie and fledgling biker. She firmly believes that adventures can happen close to home, don’t have to cost a lot of money or take a lot of time – if you’re learning something new, challenging yourself and pushing the edges of your comfort zone a little then you’re having an adventure in her book.