Enjoying the Texas outdoors is a terrific way to spend time with family, even our four-legged members. While most pets might not be well-suited for hikes, there is one kind often found on trails enjoying themselves—you guessed it, dogs. Dogs can be great hiking partners, but it is important to consider their needs when preparing for hikes or other outdoor activities. Here are five tips to ensure a fun and safe hiking trip for you and your canine companions
Most state parks in Texas allow dogs, but it’s always important to check the Texas Parks & Wildlife website to review any rules for the park you will be visiting. The most important rule is this one: keep your dog on a leash. This is important for both your dog’s safety and the safety of any wildlife you might encounter during your hike. Trails are often home to snakes, armadillos, and other animals, so keeping your dog on a leash keeps those animals and their homes safe. On the flip side, no one wants to endure a vet visit due to a snake bite on the paw or porcupine needles in the snout. Another key rule to remember is that dogs are not allowed in park buildings—and not just gift shops and museums. This rule also includes restrooms and cabins, so it is best to plan where your dog will be staying and whether you will need to bring a dog cage or extra tent for your pup to stay in.