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Hiking with dogs: cool gear, delicious treats, and kisses

May 3, 2011
We love hiking!

Peggy Sue LOVES her kisses.

This past weekend, having recovered from our near-death geese incident, Peggy Sue and I joined two of our human friends on a hike at Blue Hills Reservation. Minutes from Boston and with more than 125 miles of trails, Blue Hills is the perfect escape from the city — especially on a gorgeous spring Sunday. Since I’ll be frequenting the area in the coming months with both my pups, I’ve been searching for the perfect gear and treats to make the experience as comfortable and enjoyable as possible for everyone involved. Here are just a few things I’m looking to get:

Water bottle

It goes without saying that water is crucial on a hike. This Handi-Drink water bottle has an attached water dish as well as a hook for your belt loop or backpack, making it convenient for you and accessible for your pup.


I filled my little hiking backpack — aka running Camelbak — to the brim with dog treats, poop bags, leashes, and of course, water.  Once all was said and done, I had zero space for my own food and gear. So in the future, my pups will be wearing this backpack. It’s one of the cheaper versions out there, which is partially why I like it, and it’s water-resistant. If you’re willing to spend more, you can try this hydration backpack. It not only holds your dog’s treats but also water. At $125, though, it’s an investment.


Just like humans, dogs get hungry on hikes and sometimes need an extra boost to keep going. While it’s not good to feed your dogs a lot while exercising, an occasional healthy treat can help keep their energy up. Zukes Power Bones are basically PowerBars for dogs and the Natural Balance Dog Food Roll is great since you control the size of the treat.

Dirty poop bag holder

Sure, you’re in the wilderness but most state parks still require you to clean up after your dog — yet you’ll be hard pressed to find a trash can on these same trails. I was stuck carrying a bag of smelly poop for almost the entire four hour hike. While it is outside and no one really cares if you smell, it would be nice to enjoy fresh air without a poop stink. To solve this problem the Brits have come up with this clever Dicky Bag. It’s basically a little canister where you put your bag of poop in until you find a rubbish bin. I haven’t found anything similar in the States just yet, but when I do — or when I make my own MacGyver version — you’ll be the first to know.

I’m sure I’ll be adding to this list as the warm weather continues and I put these things to use. In the meantime, I’d love to hear about your favorite hiking dog gear and treats.

Happy hiking!


P.S. – Thank you Katie Fick for the lovely hiking photos!

9 Comments leave one →
  1. Jack Weiland permalink
    May 3, 2011 9:28 am

    Peggy Sue does indeed love her kisses. It’s worth noting, though, that we usually have food on our faces. Ya know. Just sayin.

    • May 3, 2011 10:32 am

      Fact. She knows that there’s a 50 percent chance of me having some sort of leftovers on my face.

  2. May 3, 2011 10:08 am

    Beautiful photos – 125 miles of trails?!

    We use our hydration pack to stow all of our things plus Gus’s things too. Zuke’s Power Bones are a must for us too when we bring Gus on a longer hike.

    We still don’t have an option for used poop bags. I’m checking out the Dicky Bag now!

    • May 3, 2011 10:31 am

      Well we probably only hiked 7 or so of those miles — but if we were feeling ambitious … 🙂

      The Dicky Bags are GENIUS — but they’re based in the UK so US shipping may be pricey. I’m going to see if I can DIY something similar.

      • Jack Weiland permalink
        May 4, 2011 11:00 am

        I can confirm PS was absolutely pooped upon returning home. In place of her usual ridiculous excitement was a wobbly, half-drunken stumble and a look on her face that said something like: “Whoaaaaaaa.”

  3. May 3, 2011 10:29 am

    Love me some Blue Hills. Let’s go hiking there soon together. Peggy Sue can most certainly come. And we can come up with a makeshift Dicky Bag 🙂

    • May 3, 2011 10:50 am

      YES! Let’s plan something.

      I can have one shipped from Britain but that’ll cost £7 which is like $12 FOR SHIPPING.

  4. May 3, 2011 10:44 am

    Oh, you guys and your constant activity! Macy went on a 1.2 mile walk this morning. That’s about the most we can handle. 🙂 I DO love doggy backpacks, though!

    • May 3, 2011 4:39 pm

      It’s a slow build! And I’m so excited for the doggy backpack. I accidentally bought one that was too large but I can tell it’s going to be highly successful! (Tip: Macy would probably be a small in this situation!)

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