Exploring riverways is a favorite pastime for many, especially those who relish the outdoors. With the serene beauty and the adventure of navigating the currents, these experiences make river trips unforgettable. For many river enthusiasts, the journey wouldn’t be complete without their four-legged companions alongside them. While bringing your dog along on these escapades can be incredibly rewarding and fun, it’s crucial to prioritize safety. Here are four ways to keep your dog safe during river trips.

Research the River

Not all rivers are ideal when it comes to safety. Start by thoroughly researching the river you plan to explore. Some rivers have strong currents or rapids that can be treacherous for dogs, especially those who aren’t strong swimmers. Learn about the water conditions, temperature, and any potential hazards before booking your trip.

If you’re planning a river trip with your furry companion, consider exploring Hells Canyon in Idaho. With its breathtaking scenery and exciting rapids, it’s an ideal spot for adventure-seeking dog owners. However, before setting off, familiarize yourself with the regulations for dogs in the area. While Hells Canyon has a reputation for its dog-friendly environment, there may be specific rules and restrictions in certain areas, so it’s important to check beforehand.

Invest in a Pet Life Jacket

Just like for humans, a life jacket is an important piece of safety equipment for your dog during river trips. Look for jackets made specifically for dogs, as they’re designed to keep them buoyant and in the proper swimming position. The bright color of the life jacket also serves to make your dog more visible on the water. It’s important to find a life jacket that fits properly—it should be snug but not too tight. Allow your dog to get used to the life jacket before the river trip so it doesn’t become a source of discomfort or panic once you’re both on the water.

Train and Socialize

Socialization and training are crucial for a well-behaved river companion. Dogs that follow the basics of obedience and good manners are less likely to get into trouble on the water. If your dog doesn’t have much experience being in or near water, start with small, positive experiences to acclimate them. Teaching your dog a reliable recall command can be a lifesaver should they wander too far or get into an area that’s unsafe.

Use a Secure Leash

Another effective way to keep your dog safe during a river trip is to hook them up to a very secure leash. A leash gives you the ability to prevent unpredictable situations, especially near the riverbanks where your dog might take off. Tighten up on this rule especially during high water seasons or when the currents are strong. A good general rule is to have your dog wear the leash even while swimming, so you can quickly guide them in the right direction or retrieve them when needed.

A Hells Canyon boat tour has something for everyone to enjoy, including your adventurous canine. Our team at River Adventures works hard to deliver a fun and exciting trip for each member of your party. If you have any questions about bringing your dog along for the ride, we’re happy to answer them and do our best to accommodate your needs.