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Long weekend safety tips for your furry friend

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Do you have exciting plans this long weekend with your furry friends? Whether you’re hiking, camping, or cottaging, we have some helpful tips to keep you, and your companion animals safe. 


Whether it’s a small, local trail or a provincial or national park, there are many options available for taking a hike with your furry friend – just make sure that they are animal-friendly before going!   

Hiking is a great way to get outside in nature. Not only is walking a pleasant activity and good exercise for you, it also has many health benefits for your dog.  According to VCA CanadaCanada’s largest network of animal hospitals, walking your dog can improve its weight and body composition, joint health, digestive and urinary health. It can also improve your dog’s mental and emotional health, as well!  

Remember to keep your dog leashed while on the trail. This way you can get to know how he/she will react to wildlife and other hikers on the trail. You’ll also want to check for fleas and ticks regularly, and bring along water so your furry friend can rest and hydrate regularly. 

Did you know, animals can also get sunburntMake sure to bring along pet-friendly sunscreen, and apply especially around the nose and other less-hairy areas. 

Ontario has five National Parks to explore! Just ensure that you are up to date on COVID-19 government guidelines and Public Health rules and restrictions before you plan your visit. 

Read more about visiting a national park with your dog. 

Read more tips for hiking with Fido! 


Similar to hiking, camping is a fun and active way to connect with the great outdoors with your furry family members. However, there are a few safety measures to take into consideration before heading out. 

  • If your dog likes to bark, it may be a good idea to sit this one out! Campsites do not permit excessive noise that might disturb others. 
  • Keep your dog on a leash at all times – this will prevent avoidable accidents from occurring. 
  • Always pick up and dispose of your dog’s waste. Some parks offer free dog waste bags, but bring your own just in case! 
  • Dogs can attract wildlife so keep an eye out! Additionally, make sure your dog is not chasing or harassing the wildlife, either. 
  • Bugs can be pesky little things for you and your dog! Consult your veterinarian about how to protect them. Learn more about fleas and ticks here. 

Please note that not all campsites allow dogs, so check the regulations before you embark on your adventure!  For more tips from National Parks, as well as information on camp sites, visit ontarioparks.com.  

Cottage trip 

Who doesn’t like a relaxing weekend at the cottage? While the cottage is the perfect place to kick back and relax, here are a few things to keep in mind: 

  • Your dog may have great recall at home, but the cottage can offer new and exciting distractions. Consider keeping your dog on a leash as a precaution. 
  • Find a life jacket that fits your dog properly for boating excursions, even if your dog is an excellent swimmer. Strong winds and waves may tire your dog more quickly should they fall overboard. 
  • Make sure your dog is up-to-date on their vaccines, including flea and tick medication 

Read more about cottage safety. 

With these tips in mind, you’re good to go enjoy some fun long weekend activities with your furry friends and family! 

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