Desert hiking safety tips

By: DogTrekker Staff
husky dog sits in desert with cacti in background
Photo by Daniel Tuttle.

With more than 300 days of sunshine each year, many desert and Greater Palm Springs hikers can’t wait to soak up some rays on their outdoor adventures with their pups. Be sure to pack plenty of sunscreen and water — 2 liters minimum. Once half your water is gone, it’s time to turn back.

Before heading out on your next adventure, check the basics of dog desert safety. Make sure you:

– Bring plenty of fresh water and basic first aid supplies like bandages, antiseptic wipes, and tweezers.

– Pack extra food and treats so that if you get into an unexpected situation while out in the wilderness, you have some backup nutrition available.

– Apply sunscreen to yourself and your dog if you’ll be out all day, and try to keep them limited to no more than four hours of direct sun exposure.

– Avoid midday hikes when possible, as temperatures can get dangerously high in the desert during the hot summer months.

– Keep an eye out for hazards like rattlesnakes, cacti, and scorpions. Make sure that you and your dog both wear protective footwear, and watch for any signs of discomfort or physical changes that could indicate a bite or sting has occurred.

Perhaps most importantly, when it comes to dog desert safety: pay attention to your dog’s energy levels and behavior. If your pup seems fatigued or uncomfortable, take a break in the shade and offer them a cool drink of water. If your dog has trouble walking in the sand, try to stick to trails with more solid footing.

Following these dog desert safety basics will help ensure that you and your pup have an enjoyable, safe experience when out exploring the wild beauty of California deserts. Have fun!

More safety tips can be found here.


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