View Full Version : Question about hiking in the Whites with a dog

08-24-2007, 06:36 PM
Hello all,

This is my first time posting. I am heading up to the white mts. to do some hiking and camping. I'll probably arrive Sat/Sun. I have my dog with me. He's an agile and fit Australian Shepherd, but I heard that dogs paws can get cut on the trail to the summit of Mt. Washington (and perhaps other summits). Does anyone have experience taking their dog to the Mt. Washington Summit? The highest he's ever been to this point was about 3500 ft., although I've been up higher (Mt. Shasta in CA). I'm more worried about his paws than the elevation.

Thanks in advance,

KD Talbot
08-24-2007, 10:43 PM
Yes, the quartzite and micha schist make-up of the rocks above treeline on MW can do a number on soft paws. If your dog has tough pads from walking on asphalt and rocks, he should be OK, but if he's a tenderfoot, keep an eye on the situation and turn back if he's bleeding. Many of us use Mushers Secret which is basically for sled dogs to run on ice, but it works well on the rocks, too. You should be able to find it in a well supplied pet store. Definitely on-line, but if you're leaving tomorrow it's too late for that. A good coating of vaseline above treeline may work, too. Rub it in well, and when you stop to rest, check his pads. Make sure he doesn't pick up any gravel in the vaseline.

My dog doesn't seem to have a problem above treeline, but her pads are tough from spending a lot of time climbing the rocks in the Whites.

Good luck and we always expect a trip report and pictures when we give advice! Welcome to the forum!


08-24-2007, 11:47 PM
Though we don't have a dog to hike with anymore, you may also find those who do favor certain trails that are more canine-friendly than others. Anyone with any advice?

08-25-2007, 06:20 PM
I ended up not leaving today...my dog came down with an upset stomach/intestines. I hope to leave early tommorrow morning if everything is settled. I did pick up some paw "shoes", just in case, and I'll carry some vaseline. His paws are used to asphalt and are pretty tough, but we usually hike a mixture of dirt and rocks, nothing like the White Mountains above the treeline.

08-25-2007, 06:44 PM
In looking over old posts about hiking Wahington w/dog, the general consensus is using the Ammonoosuc Ravine Trail-Jewell Trail Loop. Hope this helps and best of times.

09-11-2007, 08:40 PM
hey you probably already did your hike, but just in case.....I've seen people with dogs up on Mt. Wash often, but certain trails are much better for them. For example, don't go up Lion's Head unless your dog likes to jump up steep rocks. Another thing.....dogs aren't allowed in the Observatory on the top, so while you're wamring up with some hot cocoa and chile your dog is outside shivering tied to some pole, unless of course it's nice outside, but my heart always wrenches a bit when I see poor dogs out there standing in the fog/rain shivering. Just something to think about....

09-11-2007, 08:52 PM
i don't like to see that to .if my dog cant come in with me then i don't go in or keep them home