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Most dogs love hiking, and for adventurous dog owners, nothing is better than hiking with dogs. It’s a win-win: companionship, fresh air, and exercise for you both. Outdoor adventures are possible with big dogs and small dogs alike—and they’re easier with the right gear. Whether you’re doing a long hike or a shorter jaunt, you’ll want to get the right dog harnesses, collars, and dog leashes for hiking and consider the terrain before you set out.
The 3 Best Dog Leashes for Hiking
We reviewed offerings from top brands Ruffwear, Kurgo, and Wilderdog in our search for high-quality dog gear for the best dog—yours, of course.
Check out our in-depth video review on these dog hiking leashes and then get the purchasing details below.
Still not sure which dog leash is right for your hiking adventures? Read on.
While the Back Bay leash that we reviewed is no longer available, Kurgo sells a couple of similarly great options that will work well on and off the trail. The Kurgo Ascender is made of marine-grade double-woven line and can be clipped into a few configurations for hiking or other activities, including as a short training lead and a hands-free lead. Another alternative, the Humble dog leash, is what its name implies: a straightforward everyday piece of dog gear made with the same materials as the Ascender and Kurgo’s quality guarantees.Shop on Chewy
You may also like: Kurgo Humble Dog Leash
Ruffwear Slackline Leash for Hiking (Review)
The Slackline Hands-Free Dog Leash is pretty impressive, the latest offering from the popular brand known for the Ruffwear Front Range Harness and the Web Master Secure. Their dog hiking gear is among the best and this heavy-duty leash is no exception. It’s reflective for use in low light, easily transforms into a hands-free leash, and is made of strong nylon webbing. It has an adjustable padded handle.
This is an upgrade pick for dog parents who want more from their gear when hiking or doing other activities, like jogging.Shop at Walmart
Supplies are limited—check out the newest version of this leash: Ruffwear Crag Dog Leash
Resembling a climbing rope, this sturdy dog leash for hiking is softer than you’d expect on the hands even without a padded handle. A strong locking carabiner is used for the attachment, so you can easily tether Fido. Wilderdog is a beloved U.S.-made brand in the world of outdoor dog gear and this leash is legendary for its durability. Leads come in 5- or 10-foot lengths.
A top choice for climbers, die-hard adventurers, and any pet parents who need a super-strength tether for their dog.Find on Wilderdog
You may also like: The Hurtta Casual Rope Dog Leash
Hiking With Dogs: What Else Should You Bring?
Once you’ve got your dog’s leash picked out, you’ll also want to remember:
- Poop bags
- Water bottle holder or collapsible dog bowl
- Pet first aid kit
- Extra food
- Spare hiking leash
If you’ll be covering rough terrain with your dog, you may also want to consider booties. They come in different sizes so it’s important to measure carefully before buying. If your dog isn’t a fan of wearing shoes, a paw wax like the classic Musher’s Secret is a good alternative for protecting your pooch.
Finally, a dog pack can be a handy addition to your hiking adventure. Dog packs give your dog a job and a sense of purpose, while also serving as an ideal spot to stash poop bags, a water bowl, treats, and a spare leash. Zipper it all up and you’re ready to roll with your very own pack dog.
Top Dog-Friendly Hikes
Find a great hike for you and your furry friend in one of the following areas: