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How well do you know your pet? Do you know what makes him/her excited? If so, are you able to contain your pet? Learn to read his/her body language and posture. If you can't anticipate your pets' reactions to various situations, you cannot effectively hike with him/her. Obedience classes help you understand your pet better. Taking small trips with them beforehand will also help gauge whether they are ready to hike with you.