My friend and I went hiking in a nature preserve with my dogs last evening. We were talking and got on some unfamiliar trails. Could not find our way back to the parking lot! It was getting dark. Her phone with GPS was in her car, mine doesn't have it. We called my husband to come and honk his horn so we could find the front entrance but we couldn't hear it. Finally met another hiker who pointed us back in the right direction and then heard traffic from the road near the parking lot.
Question: Do you think if I had unleashed the lab (who would stay with us) she could have led us back? She has only been there 3 times but wonder if her sense of direction would have taken us to the car? She was VERY eager to get home by that point. Let's just say the dogs slept very, very well last night.
We will ALWAYS go earlier in the day and stick to the front trails we know from now on!
Your dog would for sure take you back to................................................ .....a dead porcupine in the opposite direction of the road.
On the serious side, not sure. I don't think it is something I would rely on. Glad everything turned out all right though.
I know people who lost their dogs while they were off-leash in the woods and the dogs did not return to the parking lot. One dog was never seen again. I would not count on your dog turning into Lassie!
Sharon, Blaise and Diesel.
That must have been a little scary.
I'm with Beerfish and Sharon, though. Leaning towards Beerfish's observation.
Seamus and Flynn
I know when we go hiking, Caleb will back track the way we came in to my truck, but he's not off lead. I'm with the others- don't turn her loose.
A friend´s got a mutt he adopted some time ago, and when he brings him mountain biking with us, if he gets bored or tired, he leaves my friend and goes back to the car on his own (with distances of up to 10 miles). BUT this has got to be the smartest mutt I´ve met. He´s smarter than his owner for sure.
No way would I trust a dog to find a parking lot, especially if they'd only been there a couple of times previously.
You could count on a Lab to find any decaying, stinking carcass, or mud puddles, or lost tennis balls, or sticks ... but not a parking lot.
Jackie, Champ, and Buddy
You are running the risk of someone stealing your labrador. They are so friendly they will go with anyone.
Erns always goes back to the car...if he has had enough of a walk. If not he will go for more walk then go to the car.
I wouldn't rely on Tessa as she will go and find a dead bird.
I think some of them would find their way back, and some of them wouldn't. I wouldn't take the chance. Next time have your friend carry her phone, lol. It's scary getting lost in the woods.