You can take your furry friends along with you on most travel adventures — and it’s not as difficult as you might think. With research and a little extra planning to ensure your dog is comfortable, you’ll have a trip filled with fun memories together.
Here are some trip tips to make traveling with your dog enjoyable.
Keep Your Routine as Much as Possible
Try to stick to your dog’s regular home schedule to help decrease stress. This includes feeding, walking and exercise routings.
For example, if you take them out to potty every 2-3 hours at home, try to do the same when staying at a hotel or friend’s house. If you normally feed your dog at 6 am and 6 pm, try to stick to these times when you travel.
Tip: Before you leave home, teach your dog to go potty on multiple surfaces, not just grass!
Stick to the same Food
It can be difficult for dogs to suddenly switch to something new so pack a few days supply of your dog’s food, even if you’re sure you’ll be able to purchase more at your destination. If it’s unavailable, make sure to bring a supply for the duration of the trip.
Always Have Water
At home, most people leave a water dish out for their dogs. This means a dog can drink whenever they are thirsty.
Dogs can quickly become dehydrated when they’re hot or stressed, so make sure to always have a water bottle with you, or stop at water fountains along the way, and give your dog regular opportunities to drink.
A collapsible dog dish is a convenient way to keep your pup hydrated.
Bring Old and New Toys
Your dog will feel more comfortable away from home if you bring a few familiar things for them. If they have a favorite blankie, bone or toy, make sure to bring those.
To beat any boredom, provide him with a few new toys. You might want to include a puzzle-type toy to keep him occupied, or a Kong with treats inside.
Bring their Bed or Crate
A crate or carrier will make it easier once you get to your final destination and if you take overnight or longer stops during the journey as it can double as a sleeping place. This can create a “safe cave” for your dog to hide out in if necessary.
If they’re not used to a crate, make sure to bring a bed or blanket that they’re used to so they’ll know where they’re allowed to rest and have down time.
Provide Plenty of Walks and Leg-stretches
When planning your itinerary, schedule regular time slots for exercising your dog. A tired dog is a happy dog (and happy owner). Dog parks are a great place to exercise and socialize. Or head out for a walk around the neighborhood.
Research dog-friendly places ahead of the trip:
Before traveling with your dog, become familiar with dog friendly hotels, restaurants, stores, attractions and accommodation at your final destination and stops on the way.
Many hotels charge additional fees to accommodate your pet. These can range from $10-$250 for one time fees or daily charges and that can really add up. On the bright, there are some hotel chains that have free dog policies and welcome pets without asking for additional fees or deposits.
Essentials packing list:
Here’s a checklist of items you’ll definitely need to bring along.
Leash and poop bags
Collar with current ID
food and water
A bed or crate
First Aid Kit (Dog first aid kits can be purchased at local pet stores or if you have time you can prepare one yourself.)
Medical records and travel documents (if traveling out of country)
Let the Fun begin
The joy of travelling with your pup is truly invaluable. Besides creating a stronger bond together, you’ll end up meeting more people, seeing more places, and living in the present. What better reasons could there possibly be to plan for your next adventure with your best friend?