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  • Dogs in the National Forest

    Dogs are allowed in White Mountain National Forest.

    If you bring your dog hiking, it must be under verbal or physical restraint at all times. Be considerate of other hikers. You must carry a leash and have your dog on it when in trailhead parking lots, developed campgrounds, and other developed sites. When on the trail, use the leash when around other people, or as necessary, and don’t forget to clean up after your dog.

    To hike with you, your dog should be healthy, fit and obedient.

    • Make sure your dog is fit enough. Just as a couch potato human shouldn't set out on a challenging hike without training for it, neither should a semi-active or overweight dog. Remember, hiking is a lot more strenuous than walking. Short training hikes can be fun, too.
    • Make sure the terrain you plan to hike is suitable for your dog. Every dog isn't suitable for every trail!
    • Your dog should also reliably respond to voice commands.
    • Your dog should have a collar with an ID tag that has your contact info - and you'll need a leash, too, as some places require them. Many hikers use a waist belt system for day hikes, or a leash that can clip to their pack. You may want to add a small bell to the collar; the sound can help you know where your dog is when off lead.

    Since dogs can't sweat, avoid hiking during the hottest part of the day.

    Please note that many state parks do not allow pets, so be sure you know where you are--local, state, federal, conservation land--when hiking in the Whites!