Embarking on a camping adventure with your furry friend can amplify the joy of the great outdoors. If you've got a rooftop tent setup, you might be wondering how to make it dog-friendly. Let's explore some pawsome tips on how to get your dog into a rooftop tent, ensuring a comfy and secure camping experience for both of you.

Preparing Your Dog for the Rooftop Tent Experience

Before you set out, it's crucial to familiarize your dog with the rooftop tent. Dogs thrive on routine and familiarity, so introduce your pup to the tent gradually. Set up the tent at home and let your dog explore it at their own pace. Reward them with treats and positive affirmations to create a positive association with the space.

Choosing a Pet-friendly Ladder

Invest in a pet-friendly ladder or a portable dog ramp. These are specially designed to provide a gentle incline and a non-slip surface, making it easier for your dog to access the rooftop tent. Ensure that the equipment is sturdy and can safely bear your dog's weight.

Teaching Your Dog to Climb

Start by training your dog to climb a ladder or use a ramp if they aren’t used to heights. Begin with small steps on the ground and gradually increase the height, always supervising and using a harness for safety. Patience is key here, so take your time with this. And don't forget to encourage them or give them the prizes! I know! They are just babies so a little bit encouragement, like their favorite food after your climbing training time.  

Use A Dog Vest Harness

For dogs that are hard to get into rooftop tent at the very beginning, you can always use a vest harness. You don't need to take them climb a ladder with the help of vest harness, and except for getting your dogs on your RTT, you can also walk your dog with your vest harness. The best part? your dogs won't feel any discomfort with the support of it. And it's always suggested to have one if you are a big fan of outdoor adventure with your dog. As you can lift your dog onto your car, or go upstairs. 

Making the Tent Welcoming

Sometimes they don't get on your rooftop tent not because they can't, it's because they don't want to. So, to ensure your dog feels at ease in the rooftop tent, bring along their favorite blanket or toy. This not only adds a touch of home but also provides them with a sense of security. Make sure the tent is spacious enough for your dog to move around comfortably. 

Simulating the Camping Environment

Conduct a few practice runs by camping out in your backyard. This will help your dog get used to the idea of sleeping in the rooftop tent. It’s also a perfect opportunity to troubleshoot any issues that might arise during the actual trip. When you really do need them to get into your tent while overlanding, they don't be afraid of doing so as they've been familiar with it.

Setup and Takedown

Make setting up and taking down the rooftop tent a team effort. Train your dog to wait patiently while you prepare the space. This prevents any accidents and ensures a smooth process. Although this won't directly help your dog get on your rooftop tent, it aims to let your dog realize this is a daily routine and habit.

But always have a plan for emergencies. Keep a first-aid kit on hand, and know the location of the nearest vet. Ensure your dog’s tags and microchip information are up-to-date in case they wander off.

Creating a Routine for Overnight Stays

Once you're at the campsite, stick to a routine. Feed your dog at the same time you do at home and settle down for the night together. A consistent routine helps your dog adjust to the new environment so that they don't feel uncomfortable while getting on your rooftop tent.

At the same time, teach your dog to respect nature. Keep them on a leash when outside the tent to prevent them from chasing wildlife or disturbing other campers. Always clean up after your dog to maintain the cleanliness of the great outdoors. 

In Conclusion

Getting your dog into a rooftop tent is all about preparation, training, and safety. By taking the time to familiarize your dog with the equipment and the environment, you'll ensure a comfortable and enjoyable camping experience for both of you.

Remember, every dog is different, so adapt these tips to suit your furry friend's needs. With a little bit of planning, your camping trip can be an unforgettable adventure that includes your beloved pet. So pack your bags, grab the leash, and get ready for a tail-wagging good time in the great outdoors!


Michael Chong