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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all! Rango and I are getting more and more into hiking in the woods together, and take 5-10 miles on a weekend day. I see so many wonderful hiking products for dogs, and I'm particularly interested in a good, sturdy, weatherproof harness with a handle, and boots to protect his little Chihuahua feets. The problem is that even the smallest sizes I've found accommodate dogs in the 20-30lb range. My guy is tall and long, but very lean and has very small paws. I've checked with Ruffwear and other similar companies, but have had zero luck. Does anyone have a clue where I could purchase such items? Or is anyone on here super into DIY projects that has ideas of how I could fashion something myself? I'm particularly interested in the harness, as I'd like to be able to safely and quickly grab him up if need be.
 

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I have no experience on hiking gear as I don't hike. But there must be some place online where you can find boots. Maybe check some online sites like doggievogue.com, doggiecoutureshop.com, baxterboo.com and ebay.


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There's a lot of places that sell boots for small breeds online :) I went mountain hiking with Dexter last year and he climbed to the top fine with just his bare feet lol. He had on a regular buddybelt type of harness and was great.
 

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Kody, Peso and me go 'hiking' on the Rails & Trails at Big Pool, MD. Its about 20 miles of asphalt and level ground (I know rough, isn't it) :) .... we also go to the Rock Gap State Park to hike in the woods....

when we go to the woods they don't wear anything on their little feet but they do wear shoes when we walk the big pool trail in the summer.... hot asphalt and bare feet do not make a good hike.... they both have these shoes....Kodys is blue, Pesos is Red.... EPIKS shoes....I might add ... that I bought both pair on a business trip in Denver CO.... don't knw if you can get them online or not








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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Wow, great tip Jan, thanks for sharing. We don't do much walking on asphalt, but there are places in the woods that have very fine, sharp gravel, and even some spots where we sort of have to go through sticker bushes. Neither of which, I'd imagine, feel very good on bare feet. I'll search the net for this brand to see if I can order a pair.

Do you happen to have any ideas about the all-weather vest/harness with a handle?
 

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Kody, Peso and me go 'hiking' on the Rails & Trails at Big Pool, MD. Its about 20 miles of asphalt and level ground (I know rough, isn't it) :) .... we also go to the Rock Gap State Park to hike in the woods....

when we go to the woods they don't wear anything on their little feet but they do wear shoes when we walk the big pool trail in the summer.... hot asphalt and bare feet do not make a good hike.... they both have these shoes....Kodys is blue, Pesos is Red.... EPIKS shoes....I might add ... that I bought both pair on a business trip in Denver CO.... don't knw if you can get them online or not








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wow ! those shoes look great !! Do Kody and Peso mind wearing them ? was it hard to get them used to wearing them ?

one time , years ago, I had researched dog boots and ended up getting some called Mutlucks. I wanted them so that when they went out in the yard in the winter when there's snow... there little feet wouldn't get cold.
this was when I only had Minnie and Tootsie.
they would not even let me put them on there feet, so , luckily, the store I bought them from had a good return policey ( cause they were not cheap ) , and I sent them back
 

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a Google Search provides a good deal of Dog Packs.... RuffWear seems to be the most interesting..... post some pics once you decide on one.... I would love to see how the backpack fits your doggie.... I am thinking of one for my crew but am worried if it would be too hot for them...

they both have Buddy Belts(Luxury - Venom - Year of the Snake Collection)... LOVE them!
 

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A dog that is regularly exercised outdoors won't need protective boots as long as their paws are in good condition. They really only need them for extremes of temperatures. Mine all walk barefoot on all types of terrain without any issues, i just keep an eye out in case they get a bit of gravel or similar between their pads.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
The RuffWear one looks great, the only thing I'm concerned about is the size. The smallest says it fits 13"-17" girth (measuring the deepest part of the chest), and I don't think this will be small enough. I'll have to measure him with a fabric tape tonight to get it right. If he hits the 13" mark, or I guess even 12", I'll probably buy it. And of course post pics once I do. Thanks for all your help.
 

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This thread is like the story of my life! Having one 20 lb dog that I can just barely get hiking stuff for and then the chi that I am just totally frustrated with! We are big hiking people and I have yet to find ANYTHING that holds up to the quality of high end hiking gear that you can get for bigger dogs. I LOVE ruffwear but it is just not at all sized for a chi. The xxs webmaster harness is really only going to work at 14+ inches. I know it says 13 but it is a bulky harness and I would not push that measurement. My 20 lb dog with an 18" girth is the xxs webmaster (the 13-17 girth one). He actually made due with the xs webmaster when that was the only one available and it was really uncomfortable for him. He uses their boots too, in the smallest size and they are amazing, but also no go for chis.

A dog that is regularly exercised outdoors won't need protective boots as long as their paws are in good condition. They really only need them for extremes of temperatures. Mine all walk barefoot on all types of terrain without any issues, i just keep an eye out in case they get a bit of gravel or similar between their pads.
It is funny, I just had a conversation with my mother in law about how she used to think it was ridiculous Americans put their dogs in boots (she is from the UK and a vet) until she started doing hardcore outdoor activity in this country! She tells me that the UK is wetter and softer than it is here- LOL. I don't know, I've never been there! I do know in the US there are many, many places that even the most constantly exercised dogs (like hunting dogs) need to wear boots in the backcountry. In the northeast and the Rockies it is pine sap painfully getting into paws, out in the west it is spiny cactus all over the trails, also brambles and in those dry mountains in socal the pine needles are literally like needles, I've seen dogs get bloody just from those. So in fact in a hiking situation they are more than necessary in many parts of the US, which is why it is so frustrating when you can't find a quality product for tiny dogs. I end up carrying Kerri through many of our trails because she can't go two steps without something poking between her paws and it is so frustrating because Copley can just go because he has quality shoes.

I have tried mushers secret, it is made for sled dogs, but it is a paw proctector wax you rub on. My success has varied. It works to keep most sap away, and will help with some mildly rough terrain but does nothing of course for cactus and brambles.
 

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lil pals by coastal pet products makes some nice harnesses for our tiny ones. No handle and not necessarily made for hiking but it works fine for us here in Colorado. I have yanked my dog into my arms with her regular harness before, (snake streaked out in front of us on a trail) and she was fine.
Li'l Pals® Comfort Mesh Harness | Coastal Pet Products


OMG... that is the EXACT harness that I have for Peso.....I do love it almost more than the Buddy Belt.... I thought the velco wouldn't hold well with his jumping around and tugging... but it has never failed and if it would ever fail there is still the straps to hold the harness on him....
 

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It is funny, I just had a conversation with my mother in law about how she used to think it was ridiculous Americans put their dogs in boots (she is from the UK and a vet) until she started doing hardcore outdoor activity in this country! She tells me that the UK is wetter and softer than it is here- LOL. I don't know, I've never been there! I do know in the US there are many, many places that even the most constantly exercised dogs (like hunting dogs) need to wear boots in the backcountry. In the northeast and the Rockies it is pine sap painfully getting into paws, out in the west it is spiny cactus all over the trails, also brambles and in those dry mountains in socal the pine needles are literally like needles, I've seen dogs get bloody just from those. So in fact in a hiking situation they are more than necessary in many parts of the US, which is why it is so frustrating when you can't find a quality product for tiny dogs. I end up carrying Kerri through many of our trails because she can't go two steps without something poking between her paws and it is so frustrating because Copley can just go because he has quality shoes.
I hadn't even considered that you have more vicious terrain over there lol. Here in the UK I can't think of a place that dogs wouldn't be able to walk barefoot, except maybe the Welsh/Scottish mountains in the depths of winter. We don't have cacti, or even dangerous bugs and animals to watch out for. There is only one species of venomous snake and that is small and shy, most people never see one. My guys cope fine with bramble, gorse, etc i regularly walk in a pine forest, the needles make a lovely soft carpet that they love to run on. Even hiking in remote parts of Exmoor is soft terrain compared to certain states in America.
 
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