You’ve decided to go camping with your dog but you are unsure which is the best tent for camping with a dog.
We’ve spent almost 20 years camping in tents with sheepdogs and spaniels and a life under canvas with dogs is a great experience.
Finding the best tent for camping with a dog can be a tricky thing to do without having to go through a checklist.
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How many dogs are you taking camping?
Firstly, you will need to think about how many dogs are going camping with you and how big are they?
A few terriers will need less room than a few Great Danes, so the size of the tent will be an important thing to consider.
We have mainly camped with spaniels, which are medium sized dogs and which can be accommodated quite easily in most tents.
Whatever breed of dog you have you will need a tent that is easy to setup and keep tidy.
How many humans will be going camping with the dogs?
You’ll also have to consider the human aspect of the camping party and, in particular how many of them and how big?
A typical family with two adults and two children with a dog will make good use of a six man sized tent, and, if you have lots of luggage or equipment, which can be common with young children, then a larger tent is recommended.
We have camped with 3 spaniels and 2 children in a 9 man tent. We had lots of room, 3 separate bedrooms and plenty of living space and headroom.
You will need to be honest with yourself and go for the most room that is affordable for you, your family and your dogs.
Depending on when you go camping you will need a tent that is warm and also well ventilated for maximum comfort for you and your dogs.
Is the tent escape proof?
When you are camping with your dog you need to think about the security of your tent and whether or not your dog can esacpe.
The last thing that you need during the night is for your dog to decide that he wants to go exploring and he escapes from the tent.
The tents that we have used have all had sown in groundsheets and zip doors with flyscreens.
The sown in groundsheets mean that there are no gaps between the tent walls and the floor which could be an escape route for your dog.
The flyscreens let you have the door open for airflow, while keeping bugs out and dogs in.
Which is the best tent for camping with a dog?
If we are going camping with just the two spaniels that we have then we use our 3 man tent which provides enough room for a weekend camp and some basic supplies.
It has side pockets and a good sized door which gives us easy access to get in an out.
These are the things that you should be looking for in a tent:
A good floor. It is a good idea when camping to put a cover down on the floor, it will help to keep you warm. Also a good, thick floor will help to prevent your dog from digging his way out.
Fixed or zipped groundsheet. One of the easiest ways for your dog to escape from your tent at night is via the gap between the tent walls and the floor.
If you have a groundsheet that attaches to the walls of the tent then there is no gap to escape through.
Ventilation. Tents can get very warm in the summer and you should look for a tent that has doors with flysheets, windows and vents.
The flysheets allow you to open the doors yet maintain security and allow air to flow through the tent.
Quick setup. We’ve had tents that have taken ages to setup and others that can be setup by one person in minutes. The easier the better, particularly when it is raining.
Easy to clean. Dogs have accidents. If it is easy to clean your tent then the ‘smell; will not be around for long.
Where will your dog sleep?
My dogs sleep next to me in the tent. This is great, they help to keep me warm, it can get chilly in the night and, I am able to make sure that they are secure and safe.
Some tents come with separate areas that can be used as individual rooms where your dog could sleep and it is up to you to choose which you prefer.
Keeping your dog comfortable when camping
Your dog will need a bed or something suitable to sleep on to keep him warm and comfortable,
There are a variety of soft dogs beds to choose from that are easy to fold and transport or you could try a dog sleeping bag.
Designed specifically for dogs, they are comfortable, warm and water resistant while being easy to clean.
Alcott supply a sleeping bag called the Explorer for small and medium sized dogs. It is just like human style bag, can be unzipped or your dog can get inside to keep nice and warm.
There is a wide range of dog sleeping bags available from a number of manufacturers, and you can see many of them here.
If you are unable to get a bed or sleeping bag for your dog then you could use one of your sleeping bags for him, or some coats or blankets.
Just make sure that he has a bed of some sort so that he is not lying on a cold floor.
Whatever you choose make sure that it is easy to clean and dry.