Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Road Tested - Canine Edition

One of the things that gives me great joy is taking Big Baby along with me on some of my trail wogs.  Everything out there is so exciting to her and she always sees something interesting that I would just pass by.  I have to make sure that her needs are met when we venture out for long outings on the trail.  Here are a few of the items that I keep on hand when I take her out for an adventure.

First and foremost, Big Baby needs lots of water.  I like using the Outward Hound Heavy Duty Adventure Travel Bowl (  This bowl has held up very well for BB.  The bowl (that I fill with Smart Water for added hydration) is a bit more rugged than a regular canvas bowl because it does have a plastic bottom which is very helpful when using it in rocky terrain.  It has some handy dandy Velcro tabs so that it can be held closed when not in use.  Cleaning it is pretty simple - use regular dish detergent, give it a quick wash, rinse and let air dry.

Big Baby likes her treats even when out on the trail so I take her treats that I know won't upset her stomach (she has a very delicate tummy).  Fruitables ( are one of my favorites for her and she loves them!  They are made with pumpkin (which is good for keeping a dogs tummy from being upset) and come in several different varieties.  BB loves the pumpkin/blueberry and the pumpkin/cranberry best.  They are small, crunchy treats and are low in calorie.  What I like best is that all of the ingredients are pronounceable!!  No crazy chemicals or additives.  Hey, if we are watching what we eat, shouldn't we make sure our furry friends are eating well, too?  I think so.

Since she is a German Shepherd living in the Texas heat, I do worry about her overheating.  I recently discovered the Kool Collar on an outing to REI (  It has been pretty helpful in keeping her cool.  I would prefer if it was a little bit larger and perhaps dropped down further on her neck but this has helped to keep my girl cool on our walks.  I fill it with reusable ice cubes so that I can swap them out as they start to melt.  So far so good!  

After our walk is done and we are home relaxing, I like to use Halo Herbal Healing Salve ( on her paws.  It helps heal any nicks and scrapes she may have experienced out on the trail.  It's very moisturizing and smells nice, too.  I must admit, I use this on my hands sometimes as a moisturizer (works wonders!).  Big Baby loves getting her post-workout paw massage!  Now, if only Momma can get someone to massage her feet after a trail walk.....

One very important thing that I always take on a trail wog is a first aid kit.  I put one together myself and used an old cosmetic bag to store all of the items.  In the doggie first aid kit, I have many of the same things that would be in a kit for people - gauze pads, scissors, antiseptic, ice packs, alcohol wipes, tweezers, self-adhering bandages, anti-diarrhea medication and a small bottle of Betadine.  These are good basics and can be used for minor injuries.  Safety first!

Hope you and your four-legged friends enjoy some time out on the trails!!  

Happy Trails!