Backcountry Forum
Backpacking & Hiking Gear

Backcountry Forum
Our long-time Sponsor - the leading source for ultralite/lightweight outdoor gear
 
 
 
BCG Holiday Sale

Amazon.com
Backpacking Forums
BackcountryGear.com
backcountry gear

---- Our Gear Store ----
The Lightweight Gear Store
 
 WINTER CAMPING 

Shelters
Bivy Bags
Sleeping Bags
Sleeping Pads
Snow Sports
Winter Kitchen

 SNOWSPORTS 

Snowshoes
Avalanche Gear
Skins
Hats, Gloves, & Gaiters
Accessories

 ULTRA-LIGHT 

Ultralight Backpacks
Ultralight Bivy Sacks
Ultralight Shelters
Ultralight Tarps
Ultralight Tents
Ultralight Raingear
Ultralight Stoves & Cookware
Ultralight Down Sleeping Bags
Ultralight Synthetic Sleep Bags
Ultralight Apparel


the Titanium Page
WM Extremelite Sleeping Bags

 CAMPING & HIKING 

Backpacks
Tents
Sleeping Bags
Hydration
Kitchen
Accessories

 CLIMBING 

Ropes & Cordage
Protection & Hardware
Carabiners & Quickdraws
Climbing Packs & Bags
Big Wall
Rescue & Industrial

 MEN'S APPAREL 

Jackets
Shirts
Baselayer
Headwear
Gloves
Accessories

 WOMEN'S APPAREL 

Jackets
Shirts
Baselayer
Headwear
Gloves
Accessories

 FOOTWEAR 

Men's Footwear
Women's Footwear

 CLEARANCE 

Backpacks
Mens Apparel
Womens Apparel
Climbing
Footwear
Accessories

 BRANDS 

Black Diamond
Granite Gear
La Sportiva
Osprey
Smartwool

 WAYS TO SHOP 

Sale
Clearance
Top Brands
All Brands

 Backpacking Equipment 

Shelters
BackPacks
Sleeping Bags
Water Treatment
Kitchen
Hydration
Climbing


 Backcountry Gear Clearance


Stay Healthy--Eat Well

MARY JANES FARM ORGANIC MEALS

Mary Janes Farm Organic Backcountry Meals

NATURAL HIGH GOURMET MEALS

Natural High

 

Topic Options
Rate This Topic
#158702 - 12/13/11 08:26 PM Trail/camp manners
squark Offline
member

Registered: 03/14/11
Posts: 66
Loc: SF bay area, CA
from the 2006 thread:
Originally Posted By Jimshaw

I wonder what special commands a camping dog should know?

This seemed like a good topic for a new thread. After this long Jim probably doesn't need the answers, but I'd be curious what people think. Here's one from me to start it off:

For a hiking dog, "off the trail" is great for when a cyclist / jogger / horse approaches. Also, "go around" for grazing stock.


Top
#158709 - 12/13/11 11:02 PM Re: Trail/camp manners [Re: squark]
OregonMouse Online   content
member

Registered: 02/03/06
Posts: 6399
Loc: Gateway to Columbia Gorge
Except for one, which I'll get to in a bit, all the commands I use for my Hysson (in my avatar) are the same used in the obedience classes we took when he was younger and still use around home.

"Come." Or the equivalent. Actually, so many of us use the word "come" for encouragement (such as "come on, let's go for a walk") so much that we really should use another word to call the dog. I know that's why my Hysson considers it an optional command! (Using "OK" to release the dog from a stay has the same issues.) Fortunately, "heel" works (so far) 100% of the time. IMHO, if the dog doesn't come (or heel) every time you use the command, regardless of distractions, he should be on leash!

"Heel," "Sit," "Down," "Stay" are of course highly important. "Wait" if you want him to halt momentarily (such as waiting for you to exit the tent first). "Walk" (as opposed to "Heel") means that Hysson can walk as he wishes anywhere within the length of his leash, but without pulling. Off-leash, the command means he has to remain within 6 feet of me. Sort of a "remain close" idea.

One very useful command on the trail, particularly where leashes are required or (because of frequent traffic) a good idea, is the "Finish" command. It's used to get the dog from in front of you (in obedience, from sitting facing you after the recall routine) to sitting at your left side ready to "Heel." There are two types of "Finish"--different people use different commands for each. One of them (my classes used "Around") means the dog walks around behind you, starting on your right, and ends up sitting at your left. If he's on leash on the trail, the leash will be wound around your legs and your trekking poles. (If he's off leash, he may go quite far away when behind you!) The "Finish" routine to use on trail is where the dog walks to your left, turns his hind quarters around with his head next to you, and ends up sitting at your left side. (It's easy to teach with a treat in hand.) That gets the dog from in front of you to your left side without any entanglements!

Another useful command is "Leave it," when the dog is involved with distractions such as food or carrion. It can be lifesaving in some circumstances (such as dead fish at the edge of a stream, which at least here in the NW carry bacteria that can cause fatal illness in dogs).

The one command I "invented" for Hysson for hiking/backpacking use is "Behind." That means he is to walk directly behind me on the trail. I taught it to him for two reasons. First, I don't want him to run ahead of me, especially where there's a good chance of meeting oncoming hikers or horses or maybe wildlife around a blind corner. The main reason, though, is when he walks in front he likes to be a few inches in front of me and then stop dead if he encounters a fascinating smell. I haven't yet fallen over him, but some day it's bound to happen! It's also very annoying when I'm trying to keep a steady pace. At home we practice this command on our daily exercise walks. Then there was the time that Hysson went ahead of me on a log across a torrential glacial stream, and then came back out to me in midstream, no doubt wondering why I was so slow. The log was narrow enough that I had to back up to the bank I'd left so I could get Hysson turned around. Since then, it's been "Behind" for every log crossing!

In the cases you describe, I just tell Hysson to "heel" and either grab his traffic lead (18-inch lead used for agility training, in Hysson's case the nose band part of his Gentle Leader head collar) or put on his leash. I of course give him good scratches and praise while doing that so he doesn't regard being leashed as a punishment! The reasons for leashing him for these occasions are to overcome distractions (considerable if the oncoming folks also have a dog) and mainly to reassure oncoming hikers who are nervous about dogs (these include a majority of children and more than a few adults who have been bitten in the past). I know that horsemen also feel much more comfortable if the dog they meet is on leash. Hysson is quite calm around horses, but of course the horsemen we meet don't know that!

Speaking of agility training, I thoroughly recommend a beginning agility class for hiking dogs. Once your dog has become confident running through tunnels, going over jumps, jumping on and off a table and, above all, walking across a teeter-totter, he won't be at all nervous about going over/under deadfall or walking logs across streams (I know otherwise enthusiastic hiking dogs who refuse to do the latter). Your dog should have mature joints (or jump heights should be severely limited) and not too old (the activities could exacerbate arthritis). Hysson was a little over a year old when he took the class (the jumps were set really low). It was recommended as a transition to the third level--all off-leash--obedience class. It worked fine for that purpose, but I didn't realize until we got out hiking the next summer how much the agility class helped him be confident in rough terrain!


Edited by OregonMouse (12/13/11 11:25 PM)
_________________________
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view--E. Abbey

Top
#158736 - 12/14/11 04:43 PM Re: Trail/camp manners [Re: OregonMouse]
Heather-ak Offline
member

Registered: 07/11/10
Posts: 597
Loc: Fairbanks, AK
I don't have a dog anymore, but I found agility great training... for me! Roland, my dog at the time, I'm sure gained a lot from class too, but in our relationship I think I got more training out of it than he did. Additionally, classes of any sort, reinforce your procedure - maybe in your day to day life you don't need to use "Leave it" or my personal favorite "On by!" (keep moving, ignore xyz) - however in training (I went once a week for over a year) this is constantly done and reminds you not to get lazy and to THINK.

I like dogs, but I don't like being licked or jumped on or followed - and I'm very ... alpha-ish in dog language, which bothers some dogs - so I greatly appreciate your dog being on leash!

Top
#159643 - 01/05/12 12:53 AM Re: Trail/camp manners [Re: squark]
Jimshaw Offline
member

Registered: 10/22/03
Posts: 3938
Loc: Bend, Oregon
I haven't taken my new dog camping yet. Around here the lava is so sharp that she would need boots if she got off trail. Shes part pit bull so I'm not sure just how she would react to meeting people coming the other direction, but I know she hates horses. This girls camping is probably going to be limited to car camping (off road fer sure), so her trail time will be limited. Frankly I could have her off leash anywhere as she will come to me in an instant when I call her, even if she's about to chomp something.
_________________________
These are my own opinions based on wisdom earned through many wrong decisions. Your mileage may vary.

Top
#160525 - 01/16/12 08:30 PM Re: Trail/camp manners [Re: Jimshaw]
Jimshaw Offline
member

Registered: 10/22/03
Posts: 3938
Loc: Bend, Oregon
I am coming to realise that there is a great range of inteligence in dogs. who'da thunk? My new dog is a Labra-pit and shes very sweet but dumb as a stump, bless her heart. blush
She can sit, come, move it, and get in the truck, and shes starting to learn to fetch. Imagine a retriever too stupid to retrive. cry She can't even catch a treat if it bounces off her nose. I worked for a month on shake and nothing, nada to show for it, but she does sometimes raise a paw and scratch at my leg to hurry me up when going for a walk.

So anyway shes not very trainable and training for her means more like learning to walk along with me and trust me and be a companion. I commented to my wife that "I guess if ya want a dog to jump into ice water as far north as Labrador and get a bird, maybe a stupid dog is better. Maybe a smarter breed would refuse."

We may try the bicycle pulling thing with a long retractable leash.
Jim
_________________________
These are my own opinions based on wisdom earned through many wrong decisions. Your mileage may vary.

Top
#160616 - 01/18/12 08:12 PM Re: Trail/camp manners [Re: Jimshaw]
OregonMouse Online   content
member

Registered: 02/03/06
Posts: 6399
Loc: Gateway to Columbia Gorge
Hey, Hysson is 3/4 Lab and 1/4 Golden Retriever. He won't retrieve and he won't swim! Otherwise he's a very good and well-behaved dog, but he's sure a traitor to his genetics!

Part of the non-retrieving has to do with his overbite, of course.
_________________________
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view--E. Abbey

Top
#160624 - 01/19/12 09:21 AM Re: Trail/camp manners [Re: Jimshaw]
finallyME Offline
member

Registered: 09/24/07
Posts: 2710
Loc: Utah
Originally Posted By Jimshaw
maybe a stupid dog is better. Maybe a smarter breed would refuse."


I think my dog weighs all the options when I give her a command. Sometimes she decides the punishment is worth it.
_________________________
I've taken a vow of poverty. To annoy me, send money.

Top
#161155 - 01/26/12 08:52 AM Re: Trail/camp manners [Re: Jimshaw]
skcreidc Offline
member

Registered: 08/16/10
Posts: 1590
Loc: San Diego CA
I personally think that the communication between dog and person is usually the big problem. Making sure that they understand what you want them to do is no easy task. Agility training definitely helps as dogs key off of body language (I'm thinking more than we do usually?). You can set up a course using PVC pipe and cheap tunnels on your own easy enough. The hard part is understanding the more advanced training techniques. That is where a good instructor comes in handy.

Top
#161178 - 01/26/12 01:20 PM Re: Trail/camp manners [Re: skcreidc]
BZH Offline
member

Registered: 01/26/11
Posts: 847
Loc: Torrance, CA
Originally Posted By skcreidc
.... Agility training definitely helps as dogs key off of body language (I'm thinking more than we do usually?). ...


I think a significant part of the training is getting the human to use consistent and clear body language. Dogs naturally focus on their master's bodily language, we just don't naturally send consistent signals.

Top
#161181 - 01/26/12 02:46 PM Re: Trail/camp manners [Re: BZH]
billstephenson Offline
Moderator

Registered: 02/07/07
Posts: 3889
Loc: Ozark Mountains in SW Missouri
Yeah, my dog, Annie, is very good at reading sign language, but is only now starting to listen. If I give her the hand signal to sit, she drops to her butt in an instant (although it's still wiggling), but it takes several times for her to respond to my voice command. She's getting better though. She's just over a year old now and really becoming a pleasure to have around.

Bless her little heart, she was excited as can be when she greeted me this morning with a deer leg in her mouth. She was ready to share it too.

All our dogs have done this, and after all these years that still kind of freaks my wife out. I've explained to her that it's our dog that's at their place and their isn't a darn thing I can complain about, but I've mentioned to my neighbors that their deer parts do end up at my place. Ya gotta love hillbillies, they are a sharing bunch, they always just grin and say "Your welcome." What can I do but say, "You too" laugh

_________________________
--

"You want to go where?"



Top
#161190 - 01/26/12 03:57 PM Re: Trail/camp manners [Re: billstephenson]
BZH Offline
member

Registered: 01/26/11
Posts: 847
Loc: Torrance, CA
Originally Posted By billstephenson
... I've mentioned to my neighbors that their deer parts do end up at my place. Ya gotta love hillbillies, they are a sharing bunch, they always just grin and say "Your welcome." What can I do but say, "You too" laugh



Yeah my dog, when I was a kid, always ended up at our neighbors house when he was cutting up his deer. Combine that with our deer and the turkeys and pigs we raised, she would consistently freak out visitors with various body parts all summer long.

Top
#161328 - 01/27/12 09:50 PM Re: Trail/camp manners [Re: BZH]
skcreidc Offline
member

Registered: 08/16/10
Posts: 1590
Loc: San Diego CA
Get out the lard and onions honey, cause I'm going to gut you a deer! That line always cracks me up. Nothing like fine Venison. If the parts are raw, I suppose it's not a problem for the dogs generally speaking.

Top
#162456 - 02/18/12 09:59 PM Re: Trail/camp manners [Re: squark]
mccallum Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/11
Posts: 23
Loc: Kansas
I use "come on" as a lets go, walk. "Get back here" when Bear,my lab mix, starts moving faster than I desire and hadmade progress in said move. "Hey" or a grunt noise to stop a move caught more quickly. The nice thing on the trail, or walking in our small Kansas community, Bear keeps an eye on me and if I get to far behind he comes back to find me; he also comes if he gets behind more than 10 feet(yeah I need to keep a better eye on him when he finds a smell). The funny thing is he does it less on trail than walking our daily exersice route.

Top
#162530 - 02/20/12 05:41 PM Re: Trail/camp manners [Re: mccallum]
JAK Offline
member

Registered: 03/19/04
Posts: 2569
Have you ever had people jump when you called "Bear" by name?

Top
#162583 - 02/22/12 01:10 PM Re: Trail/camp manners [Re: OregonMouse]
Steadman Offline
member

Registered: 09/17/09
Posts: 510
Loc: Virginia
OregonMouse

It sounds like I'd love to be around your dog. A lot of others just let them run loose. I am not reassured when folks tell me that a dog is "friendly" and the dog is bounding around uncontrolled - a friendly dog tackled my youngest daughter, and she is only somewhat reassured when I tell her that dogs are edible, or when I can tell her that it is a good dog. I can only tell her it is a "good" dog when I see the dog following commands, heeling and so forth.

Steadman

Top
#162586 - 02/22/12 01:27 PM Re: Trail/camp manners [Re: Steadman]
palameto Offline
member

Registered: 01/24/12
Posts: 37
Loc: East Texas
I keep my dog on leash because she is not good with other dogs. For that reason, I do not appreciate it when off-leash dogs run up to us, and the owner yells, "Don't worry, he's friendly!" I typically yell back, "Yeah, but my dog's not!!" It creates a very stressful situation, for both me and my dog. Along those lines, because of my dog's issues with other dogs, I do not take her camping or hiking in very heavily populated areas. If we do not see another dog all day, that is perfect. I am aware of her limitations, and I try not to expose her to situations in which she is uncomfortable or likely to act crazy.

Top
#162613 - 02/22/12 11:19 PM Re: Trail/camp manners [Re: Steadman]
OregonMouse Online   content
member

Registered: 02/03/06
Posts: 6399
Loc: Gateway to Columbia Gorge
I was very proud of Hysson this morning! We went for a walk on the beach (Westport, WA) before packing up to come home. The beach was basically deserted (in addition to being a weekday, it was also blowing hard and alternately raining and sleeting), so I let him off leash (he loves to run in circles on the beach, alternately wading in the surf and checking out logs farther up). We got almost to where we would climb up the steep (eroded) foredune to leave the beach, and I was about to call Hysson to put his leash back on. A man appeared with two dogs on leash. I told Hysson to "heel" and he came right to my side, despite his considerable interest in the two dogs!


Edited by OregonMouse (02/22/12 11:20 PM)
_________________________
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view--E. Abbey

Top
#162734 - 02/24/12 04:57 PM Re: Trail/camp manners [Re: JAK]
mccallum Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/11
Posts: 23
Loc: Kansas
Originally Posted By JAK
Have you ever had people jump when you called "Bear" by name?


No,we do not livein Bear country. Kansas don't got bears. But thanks for the heads up; I did not thnk of that when I named him!

Top

Moderator:  Glenn Roberts 
Shout Box

Highest Quality Lightweight Down Sleeping Bags
 
Western Mountaineering Sleeping Bags
 
Lite Gear Talk - Featured Topics
Bivvy bag with wired peak
by Petro1234
Today at 01:06 PM
How cheap can you go?
by EMT Dave
12/05/17 07:07 PM
compass, thermometer, baro/altimeter
by edfardos
11/19/17 09:54 PM
Backcountry Discussion - Featured Topics
Just found out about UCO candles
by toddfw2003
11/30/17 08:41 AM
Hitting the eagle rock loop, Ark in 3 days
by toddfw2003
11/19/17 11:31 AM
Flamable fabrics?
by
11/13/17 09:31 PM
Make Your Own Gear - Featured Topics
Plant based insulation...
by billstephenson
11/18/17 02:58 PM
lightest grommets to use
by toddfw2003
10/22/17 06:13 PM
avalibility of thin ti rod
by the-gr8t-waldo
01/26/17 04:45 PM
Featured Photos
Breakneck Ridge, New York
May 2012 Eclipse, Lassen Park
New Years Eve 2011
Trip Report with Photos
Seven Devils, Idaho
Oat Hill Mine Trail 2012
Dark Canyon - Utah
Who's Online
0 registered (), 27 Guests and 0 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Newest Members
Woodland, ultralight, Wilderbabe, 1321132, guoguo
12466 Registered Users
Forum Links
Disclaimer
Policies
Site Links
HOME
Backpacking.net
Family Hiking
Lightweight Gear Store
Backpacking Book Store
Lightweight Zone
Hiking Essentials

Outdoor Gear Daily Deals
Outlets, Sales, Bargains

Our long-time Sponsor, BackcountryGear.com - The leading source for ultralite/lightweight outdoor gear:

Backcountry Forum
 
 

Since 1996 - the Original Backcountry Forum
Copyright © The Lightweight Backpacker & BackcountryForum.com