Camping with your dog is one of the most fun experiences you can have. Whether you’re going out solo or with the family, bringing along your pup is a great way to enjoy this experience.
The key to camping with your dog is having the right tent. Let’s go over the basics of camping with a dog and what you’ll want to look for in a tent for camping with dogs.
First Time Campers (And Their First Time Camping Pups!)
If this is the first time you’ll be out camping with your dog, then there are a few things that you need to know.
Camping with a dog isn’t quite the same as going camping on your own or just with some friends. Your dog has some special needs that need to be addressed if you want the camping trip to be safe and fun.
Here’s the 101 for making sure that your camping trip is a blast both for you and your pup.
Car Camping VS Backpacking
There are countless varieties of camping, but we’re going to talk about the two most common kinds.
Car camping is the most laid-back and recreational type of camping. All you need to do is pack some basic camping gear, and drive up to your campsite, and have a great weekend.
Car camping sites typically offer running water, a working bath house with restrooms and showers, and some even have electricity, so you can keep all of your devices charged. If you’re a beginner camper, especially if you’re a beginner with camping with your dog, car camping is a great place to start.
Backpacking is a bit more of the real deal when it comes to being in the great outdoors. It’ll be just you, your backpack full of supplies, and your dog. This type of camping requires a little bit more experience as you’ll have less support while you’re out there in the wilderness.
Now let’s talk about what you can expect from your dog those first few times you venture Into the wilderness.
How Will Your Dog Behave While Camping?
Until you’ve got some experience, it can be hard to tell how your dog will behave while camping.
Even if you have the most well-behaved dog, being in the wilderness can change how your dog behaves. There are all kinds of new smells, and especially wild animals, that your dog will be responding to. A normally calm and laid-back dog can show their wild side when they get into the outdoors.
One of the most important things that you can do is keep your dog on a leash while camping. There’s nothing worse than having to chase your dog off the trail through the woods as they go chasing after some kind of animal. Keeping your dog on a leash will also help keep your dog safe while you’re camping.
You can look for dog friendly camping sites that have designated play areas and dog parks if you’re looking to let your pup run free while you’re out.
The last thing to keep in mind here is how your dog is going to act around other people. Campsites can be very busy and full of other dogs as well as other campers. You’re going to want to make sure that your dog can handle these kinds of social situations without getting overwhelmed.
Speaking of overwhelming situations, what happens if your dog gets sick while you’re camping?
What Happens When Your Pup Gets Sick?
You should expect that your dog might have some digestive issues the first day of camping.
Dogs have a habit of drinking water from puddles, rivers, and lakes. This means that their bodies will have to adjust to all kinds of new bacteria. It’s common for dogs to have some tummy troubles on their first day of camping.
If these issues last more than 48 hours, or if your dog begins to experience other health issues, it’s best to call the camping trip short and head back home. This is why we recommend your first time camping with your dog be just an easy weekend trip.
Your dog isn’t the only animal that’s going to be camping with you.
What About Wildlife?
We share the wilderness with all kinds of animals. Depending on what part of the world you are camping in, you and your dog will be out there alongside skunks, bears, and plenty of other wild animals.
If your dog doesn’t have any experience being outside with wild animals, it might be a good idea to take them hiking on some local trails before you go out camping. You want to get a sense of how your dog reacts when there are all kinds of critters running around outside.
Now, let’s talk about what makes a good tent for camping with your dog.
What Makes a Good Pet Friendly Tent for Camping With Dogs?
There are two big things you want to look for in a tent for both you and your dog.
It’s Got to Be Tough
Whether you’ve come home to see that your dog has chewed up a part of your couch or you’ve gone through more toys than you can count, dogs can deal a lot of damage to their surrounding environment.
You want to get a tent that can stand up to this kind of use. Some of the more lightweight tents can be a little flimsy when it comes to camping with the dog. You want to get a temp of stuff enough to be ready for more than one trip out.
Plenty of Room
You’re going to need more room than you think you might when you’re camping with your dog.
When you’re camping with multiple people, it’s easy to get everyone to commit to using a little bit less space than they normally would. However, it’s a little bit trickier to do this with your dog.
Larger tents, and tents with vestibules, are the best choice for camping with a dog. This gives your pup enough room to settle in and get comfortable while also making sure that you’re not going to be cramped while you’re out camping.
When it comes to camping with the dog, bigger is always better for the size of your tent.
Best Tent For Camping with Your Dogs: Our Picks
Mountainsmith Morrison 2-Person Tent
The Mountainsmith Morrison 2 Person Tent Is an ideal choice for camping with your dog. This tent has a lot of the key features we talked about earlier, and it’s affordable. This tent makes an ideal choice for people looking at to get something that has a little bit of a smaller footprint.
Here are the benefits of this tent:
- 2-person design
- Bathtub floor construction
- Three season rating
Coleman Dome Tent with Screen Room
The Coleman Dome Tent with Screen Room Is the ideal definition of a tent that you want for camping with your dog. The screen room makes an ideal place to keep your dog separate from the rest of the campaign experience. This can be especially useful if your dog decides it’s a good idea to roll through that puddle of mud while you’re out hiking.
Here are a few key features from this tent:
- Welded corners
- 15-minute setup
- 6-person design
- Interior big enough to fit two queen-sized camping beds
REYLEO Camping Tent
This tent is our in between option. The REYLEO Camping Tent offers flexibility as well as plenty of space. It’s affordable price tag means it’s also a good choice for beginner campers who don’t want to spend too much money upfront to get into this Hobby.
Here’s what you got with this tent:
- 6-person seating
- A lightning fast 60 second assembly time
- A spacious interior that fits 2 queen-sized camping beds
Coleman Juniper Lake Instant Dome Tent
The Coleman Juniper Lake Instant Dome Tent is the first tent on this list to be specifically designed for camping with dogs. This tent features a built-in annex that can accompany a medium-sized dog bed.The durable fabric and 4 person design also mean that there’s going to be plenty of room inside this tent and plenty of years of use even while camping with your dog.
You’re the takeaway features from this tent:
- Purpose built for camping with dogs
- Separate annex that can act as a dog bed
- 4-person design
- Quick assembly
- Durable fabric
Wenzel 8 Person Klondike Tent
The Wenzel 8 Person Klondike Tent feels less like camping and more like luxury living. This tent is spacious enough on its own, but also features a screen room that can double as a dedicated room for your dog when you’re camping.
This is the most high-end tent on our list today. Well it certainly isn’t budget breaking, it does offer an impressive range of features and is a great choice for families looking to camp with their dog.
Here’s what you get with this tent:
- 8-person capacity
- Dedicated screen room
- Strong construction