Meet RVT Sunny Lo and his dog, Aya


  • RVT shares tips for taking his dog on hikes and other excursions
  • Planning, training, and knowing your limitations are key
  • This article is part of our Father’s Day spotlight

For Sunny Lo, RVT at South Burnaby Veterinary Hospital (Burnaby, BC) being a good dog dad means spending lots of time with his dog, Aya, and making her life happy and comfortable. They are frequent adventure seekers and often go on multi-day hikes together. Sunny and Aya recently went on an Alaskan hike to see glaciers and the Northern Lights.

“For me, being a dog dad means making the most out of every moment with Aya,” Sunny explained. “During Aya’s early years I focused too much on my career and work. I wish I went on more of these adventures with her.”

Sunny hopes to explore more trails particularly those in Oregon and the Yukon. Below, he shares his best tips for others who want to take their pets along for the ride.

1. Plan ahead

“Do your research. Reach out to the touring companies to learn how and if they accommodate pets. I spent several months prepping for our Alaska trip. By calling the touring company I found out dogs are not allowed to walk on the glacier, but if I’m able to carry her in a backpack, then I would be allowed to carry her with me.”

2. Train and practice

“I spent three months before the trip carrying several sandbags in my backpack to make sure I was prepared to hike comfortably. I got up to the point where I was able to carry her weight plus an extra 30 pounds for about two hours, which is the tour’s estimated length of time.”

3. Know your limits

“Aya is a senior dog, she is 11-years-old. She is not quite as active as when she was a puppy. I always carry a spare bed so when she gets tired on walks, I have that ready for her to take a nap in the middle of the walk. We’re not going on super long hikes in one sitting any more. We take multiple breaks throughout the day. We take time for everybody to recover before moving on.”

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