Things to consider before taking your dog camping


How to plan the perfect camping or caravanning holiday with your pet.

Happy dog in a tent

Does the campsite allow dogs?

If you’re planning to take your dog with you on a camping holiday, first contact the destination to determine if pets are allowed. There’s nothing worse than driving hundreds of kilometres to discover you’re not welcome. In Australia, domestic animals such as dogs and cats are banned from National Parks, nature reserves and state recreation areas, because they are potentially dangerous to native wildlife. Dogs are allowed in some forests, but with strict guidelines. It's always best to contact the relevant governing body before your visit.

Is your dog microchipped?

The fundamentals of responsible pet ownership apply when travelling with your dog. Make sure it has a collar with clear identification and contact details and ensure the animal has been microchipped. If you are going to a remote location without coverage for mobile phones, maybe replace the dog’s usual ID tag with one that has a number of a family member back home. Then, if your dog is found, the finder can make contact via a landline.

Is it tick season?

Ticks are very common in Queensland, particularly in areas with dense bushland and long grass. A tick bite can be fatal for animals, so make sure you organise flea and tick protection at your local vet clinic before you leave. It’s important to check them for ticks when returning home from your trip and keep and eye out for any unusual behaviours.

Is your dog in a healthy condition to travel?

If the dog hasn’t been to a vet for a while, consider a check-up before you leave to avoid any nasty surprises while away. When travelling to your destination, take regular breaks for the dog to stretch and do its ‘business’. You might be able to drive for an extra couple of hours without a break, but your dog may not be able to.

Do you have the proper restraints?

When camping, make sure your dog is tied up and doesn’t roam the campsite. Never leave it alone in a vehicle or tied up for more than a few minutes. Apart from being cruel to the dog, you can annoy fellow campers if the dog starts barking while you’re away.

Five pet-friendly campsites in Queensland

Amamoor Creek camping area, Sunshine Coast

Nested in an ironbark and blue gum forest on the banks on the Amamoor Creek is where you’ll find these dog-friendly campsites. Amamoor State Forest is known for its riverine rainforests and scenic walking tracks and is home to plenty of platypuses and frogs, so be sure to keep an eye on your dog..

Cania Gorge Tourist Retreat, Capricorn

This scenic tourist park is settled into a gorge right outside of Cania Gorge National Park. Enjoy the spectacular views of the National Park, be surrounded by wildlife and enjoy some peace and quiet at these dog-friendly campsites.

Inksip Peninsula, Sunshine Coast

There are four dog-friendly camping areas on the Inskip Peninsula. Only a short drive from Rainbow Beach, all four campgrounds offer shady sites and beach access. For stunning views of Fraser Island, visit the Beagle or Sarawak sites.

Clancys Camp Area, Benarkin State Forest

Set up camp with your canine at this large, open, grassy area next to the Bicentennial National Trail. The Benarkin State Forest features rainforest, hoop pine plantations and eucalypt forests, plus Clancys Camp Area is next to the inviting Emu Creek, where you can swim and watch rock wallabies bounce about.

Hedleys camping area, Tuan State Forest

Tuan State Forest is perfect for people and pets who love boating, canoeing and fishing. Hedleys camping area is the perfect place to set up camp and is right next to the Great Sandy Strait, which is home to an abundance of wildlife including threatened species such as shorebirds, dugongs and marine turtles.

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Things to note

The information in this article has been prepared for general information purposes only and is not intended as legal advice or specific advice to any particular person. Any advice contained in the document is general advice, not intended as legal advice or professional advice and does not take into account any person’s particular circumstances. Before acting on anything based on this advice you should consider its appropriateness to you, having regard to your objectives and needs.