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[at-l] Hiking with dogs...

For anyone thinking of doing a Thru this year with your dog or for
anyone who hikes with their dog somewhere away from home.

I hate to try and talk anyone into more weight on their back but....
Make sure you have a good, clear, reproducable picture of your four
paw friend with you.  Or better yet, a REWARD LOST DOG poster prototype.
Leave the place and date spaces blank so that, God forbide, the worst 
happens you can get copies made at Post Offices, grocery stores or
print shops quickly, and start circulating them.  The faster you can get 
such flyers around the better your chances of success.

Also, make arrangements with a neighbor, friend or whomever to have
their phone number listed as a contact for anyone who finds your buddy.
Your dogs normal ID may be worthless if it lists an address and phone 
number that are no longer valid. If your Vet is willing, use their 
number since their phone is usually manned 24/7 at least by an answering 
service. You can check with them periodically while you search.

A pre hike visit to the vet should be on your schedule.  Your buddies
shots should be up to date..(stash proof of same in your pack) and
your dogs overall health should be evaluated.  Xrays may even be in 
order if your dog has never been evaluated for hip problems that would
prove disasterous under the stresses of the trail.  Your vet may have
suggestions for additions to your first aid kit ...doggy first aid.

I know you thru hikers are getting busy with prep now but these things 
are important too.		Signed Kahley et all
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