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[at-l] dogs on trail

At 12:00 AM 8/18/97 -0500, Jim wrote:

>I have a 4 month old dog, do u think she would be ready to hike with us on
>the AT? Jim

In a word, no.  Aside from having to carry the dog a lot, its bones and
joints haven't fully closed yet.  The strain of a long-distance hike could
leave them permanently damaged.  A puppy that small spends a great deal of
time sleeping or resting.  A lot of the time, he'll need to rest while you
want to hike. And for every hiker who sees a cute puppy, four or five more
will see it as a miserable, tortured little dog.  Then at least one of them
will post to the list that dogs shouldn't hike. That's a drag for the
traildog people, who don't have a good argument for taking puppies on trips.

Short dayhikes might not be a problem.  If you're contemplating a thru-hike
or a long section-hike, forget it.  Wait until it is older and you both can
enjoy the trip.  There is an e-mail list for traildog folks.  It has lots of
good information. E-mail me privately for instructions.  Have fun on the trail!

Jim Greenway & "Bonnie" (traildog)

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