The Best Gear for Hiking With Dogs

You have good gear. Why shouldn’t your best friend?

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Atlas Pet Company Lifetime Leash

Dog kit Atlas Pet Company  Lifetime Leash
Photo Andrew Slaton

An outdoor dog will trash a leash made for the city. Constructed with 9mm climbing rope, the Lifetime Leash looks no worse for the wear after a season of hiking, and isn’t brittle or banged up even after being left in a truck bed when not in use. Nice touch: The stainless steel lobster clip is easy to thumb on the move. 7 oz. (5 ft.); 5 ft., 8 ft. Buy Atlas Pet Company Lifetime Leash for $48 Now

Stunt Puppy Dry Collar

Dog kit p.p1 Stunt Puppy Dry Collar
Photo by Andrew Slaton

This lightweight collar is made of a poly-TPU material that’s water- and stinkproof. But unlike other plastics, it stays flexy in subfreezing temps. After six months of backcountry adventures, our test dog’s collar still looks—and smells—rosy. 2.5 oz. (small); 2 sizes Buy Stunt Puppy Dry Collar for $24 Now

Whyld River DoggyBag

Dog kit Whyld River DoggyBag
Photo by Andrew Slaton

Part quilt, part dog bed, the modular DoggyBag is all the comfort your pooch needs. The poofy quilt, with synthetic insulation equivalent to 650-fill down, snaps into the insulated pad to create a sleeping bag, which our test dog appreciated on a night in the 30s outside Crested Butte, Colorado. The whole thing packs down to the size of a loaf of bread, but we recommend keeping the pad handy so you can whip it out on breaks (for dog and owner). 2 lbs. 3 oz. (M); S-L Buy Whyld River DoggyBag for $99 Now

Ruffwear Approach Pack

Dog kit Ruffwear Approach Pack
Photo by Andrew Slaton

If you subscribe to the everyone-carries-his-share mentality, then load your doggo up with this pack. Big enough to fit food, water, and a sleep system for overnights, but sleek enough for dayhikes, the Approach uses a padded harness that wraps around the chest and belly for supreme stability. It never chafed our test dog. Note: Fido shouldn’t carry more than 25 percent of his body weight. 1 lb. 2 oz. (M); XS-XL; Buy Ruffwear Approach Pack for $80 Now

Doggles ILS 2

Dog kit Doggles ILS 2
Photo by Andrew Slaton

Dog goggles? We were dubious, too, but dogs are susceptible to temporary sun-caused eye damage, just like humans, and, if they live in predominantly sunny climes like the Mountain West, cornea disease is a long-term risk. These sweet shades have shatter-proof polycarbonate lenses that offer 100 percent UV protection (and are sure to double your Instagram likes). Two adjustable straps—one around the head and one under the chin—keep them secure. 4 oz. (M); XS-XL; Buy Doggles ILS 2 for $25 Now

Ruffwear Wind Sprinter

Dog kit Ruffwear Wind Sprinter
Photo by Andrew Slaton

The Wind Sprinter packs down to tangerine size, making it a great insurance policy against ugly weather. The ultralight, 50-denier nylon shell repels wind and light precip, and covers the dog from the back of the head (it has a storm collar) to the tail. A leash portal on the back allows you to still clip your dog into a harness. 3.4 oz. (M); XXS-XL; Buy Ruffwear Wind Sprinter for $50 Now

Tips for Hiking With Your Dog

Hike smart: Keep your dog under control at all times. She should always be on a short leash (7 feet or less), or within eye- and earshot if the trail allows it and your voice control is legit.

Start small: Dogs are just like people: They need to work up to big trips. If you have a couch mutt, start with short hikes before doing a long overnight.

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