Dogs on the Trail

You and your dog are both ambassadors for every dog owner that frequents the Tahoe Rim Trail. To ensure your experience is successful, preparation is key! It’s important for owners when planning a trip on the Tahoe Rim Trail to make sure their dog has the endurance, physical fitness, and is well mannered. Be sure to keep the following in mind when hiking with your furry companion.

Trail Etiquette

  • Keep dogs leashed around other trail users, at trailheads, and on steep or slippery terrain. Step aside and yield the trail to all other users. Make sure dogs are under voice control at all times.
  • Pack out dog waste on day hikes (double-bagging is helpful). On longer trips, follow LNT practices and bury away from the trail and water sources.
  • Hold the dog-to-human ratio at 1:1. If dogs outnumber people, it can be difficult to quickly control them.
  • Do not allow your dog to disturb plants or wildlife.

Helpful Tips

  • Keep track of dogs at night with a LED light or headlamp around their collar.
  • Prevent paw-pad cuts and scrapes with use of dog booties.
  • Exercise caution during winter trail use as dogs pads tend to be more sensitive. Use of topical barriers like Mushers Secret are good preventatives.
  • Pack a first aid kit just for your dog.

Pack Fitting

  • Packs should fit snugly but still be comfortable enough to place two fingers flat between your dog and the straps.
  • Packs should not shift from side to side.
  • Load weight evenly and use evenly from both sides.
  • The average dog can carry 10% of their body weight but be sure to not exceed 25%.

For more information on what to bring check out the 10 Essentials for Hiking with Dogs.