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Old 10-02-2008, 03:46 PM   #1

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Taking your dog into the wilderness

INDIAN LAKE, N.Y. When the brown duck swam close, the dog sat higher, alert and tensed in the canoe. She watched intently as the bird passed only feet from the boat's bow on the Adirondack lake, the surface glistening in afternoon sunshine.
But Daisy didn't jump into the green-black water, still warm in early autumn, to chase the duck, or even bark. Soon she lost interest and relaxed, her backside resting securely against my knee, sniffed the wind and looked around in mild interest as we recrossed Indian Lake.
The upside of taking an 8-year-old lapdog into the northern wilderness for the first time is that she's unlikely to go charging off the kind of thing that can leave a young pet or hunting dog with a muzzle full of porcupine quills, doused with skunk spray, lost in the woods or excitedly tipping your canoe. This dog also liked the water and seemed to enjoy riding in the boat.

"Many dogs do," Rich Macha said. He rented us the 35-pound fiberglass solo canoe at his outdoor shop in suburban Albany. "But you never know."
Taking the pooch on a wilderness trek can be fun and relaxing or a worrisome chore, depending on the dog, how it's been trained and the owner's advance work getting the pet acclimated.

Some animals bring particular challenges. Cal Welch's German shorthaired pointer, Pumpernickel, a sleek animal trained to hunt birds and not sit, stood the entire time while her owner paddled in a stiff wind a few days earlier on the Mohawk River near his Glenville home.

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Old 10-02-2008, 03:58 PM   #2
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Yes, you must get them accustomed to boats, etc. but what the article failed to indicate that you should carry some dog specific first aide.

I always carry the following (in addition to my own first aide kit) just for my dogs:
Small pliers - if you are in the back woods and a dog gets hit with quills you need to pull them out ASAP to minimize the damage.

Crazy glue and a baby sock - a small cut on the pad of a dogs foot can bleed and become very infected between injury and arriving at the vet. The crazy glue works on small cuts on the pad and if you carry tensor bandages (as you should) in the human kit wrap the injury and secure a small baby sock over the lot to keep it clean and dry on the walk home (i personally don't think I could carry 65lb dog for 5 miles or more ) The baby sock can also be used as a muzzle while dealing with any emergency.
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Old 10-02-2008, 04:16 PM   #3

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Great ideas Furbilator. I always carry booties. Not only for my dogs, but many people go out hiking and don't understand the impact of the running on rocks and hot dirt. I have given so many away. I always take an extra leash just in case I loose one on the trail. My dogs are leashed when passing others. Not everyone likes dogs and it makes them feel more comfortable than just placing them in a sit/stay.
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