How to Road Trip with a Dog

Pets are an important part of our families. They bring us so much joy and laughter. We often cannot imagine our lives without them. According to APPA research, 68% of households have a pet, with over 90 million dogs and 94 million cats. We want to spend as much time with them as possible. When we go to work or school, dogs often suffer from separation anxiety. While that is only for a few hours, an extended absence may cause enormous stress for our furry friends.

When going on a vacation, most pet owners will leave the care of their dog in the hands of others. Kennels, family members, and friends are among the most popular choices. Some owners, however, choose a different approach. Vacations create some special memories for families. You can take your dog along with you to take part in these special memories. If you are thinking about how to road trip with a dog, there are a number of important steps to take.

Preparing your dog

When deciding how to road trip with a dog, you need to first prepare your pooch for the adjustment. Dogs have strict routines and territories. When they find themselves in a new territory, they may grow distressed. Road trips are full of unfamiliar locations for the dog. You can help prepare your dog for this by taking them out on short trips. When you are heading out in your vehicle, consider bringing your four-legged friend along with you. This could help familiarize your dog with the car and they will grow more comfortable. You can also help them by planning a short day trip with the dog as well.

Before heading out on a road trip, families want to make sure that every i is dotted and T is crossed. They will want to make sure that their vehicle is in tip-top condition so that it can safely handle the road trip. They’ll make sure that all necessary car repairs are completed before the departure. We want to make sure that our families are protected out on the road. That includes protecting our furry friends too.

Wheel alignment is an essential part of car repairs. As you want your car to be completely safe, you want your car to be in top condition. If a car’s wheels are not properly aligned, the consequences can be devastating. Consider having your vehicle inspected before heading out on the road. It will keep your family and, in turn, your dog safe from harm.

Choosing the right vehicle

To keep your dogs and your humans safe, you will want to have a safe vehicle. There are a number of different options. You will want a car that could withstand the wear and tear of a road trip. For a more affordable option, you can go the used vehicle route. Some drivers are apprehensive about used cars, but you can still find a quality one. You can check online and in newspapers for any used cars for sale ads. Make sure to have some questions in your pocket for the owner. This way you can decipher if it’s worth buying.

Keeping your dog safe

Dogs can be rather rambunctious and always on the go. We use collars, leashes, and gates at home to make sure they don’t run away from us. On a road trip, safety is the number one priority. If your dog gets out while you’re home, you can convene a search party. You know your neighborhood and can probably decipher where your dog might run to. You can also probably recruit some neighbors to aid in your search. While out on a road trip, searching for your pet is much more difficult. That is why you should consider several safety measures when considering how to road trip with a dog.

A way to keep your dog safe while on the road is by investing in a crate. For smaller dogs, they can be effective. Crates could become too cramped for a larger dog. In this case, safety belts and travel harnesses are more suitable. These pieces of safety equipment will help tremendously in protecting your dog in the event of a crash. Should you suffer a crash, it is important that you try to keep your dog calm. They might be rattled and distressed. As you wait for the car towing service, you can comfort the dog. You can even purchase some dog calming treats for your pet. This should help to relax them in their vulnerable state. When wondering how to road trip with a dog, keeping your dog safe is just about the most important key.

Dealing with the heat

Summer remains the most popular time for road trips. While the weather is nice during this season, temperatures are known to rise. When deciding how to road trip with a dog, you will need to consider the summer heat’s effect on your dog. Before you leave, make sure to pack plenty of water to put in your dog’s dish. Keeping them hydrated is essential.

If a dog is locked in a hot car for an extended period of time, the consequences are devastating. When out on the road, keep note of the weather. It is imperative that pet parents do not leave their pets in a hot car for a long time. If you have to run into a store or somewhere, have someone stay with the dog. You can use the vehicle’s air conditioning system to help cool your pooch down. You can also purchase some portable fans for your dog as well. The cooler is a popular item on any road trip. In addition to soda and juice, you can also include some treats for your dog as well. Dogs can suck on ice cubes to help them cool down. If you check the frozen foods section of your grocery store, they do sell ice cream made specifically for dogs.

Traveling in a recreational vehicle

Your dog may not appreciate traveling in a cramped car. Dogs love to stretch out and move around. If you’re in a car that’s filled with other people and luggage, moving around is not exactly feasible. Recreational vehicles, or RVs, are popular among road trippers. They can be extremely convenient for travelers who don’t want to spend their time in hotels and motels. These vehicles are also very convenient for pets. Little Sparky is free to move about the cabin and stretch out. Since it is not as confined to a space, you do not have to make many adjustments from everyday life. You have space to give them food and water, as well as bathe them. Maintaining normalcy is important for your dog. If you plan to use an RV, purchasing RV insurance is imperative. This can help protect you and your family.

RV’s can run on the pricier side. If you are a frequent road tripper, you will have a good return on investment. If you are interested in purchasing one, you could look into a loan. You could secure a conforming loan or jumbo loans for the more expensive properties. Consulting with a financial advisor beforehand should be your best option.

RV’s, because of their size, are much trickier to drive than your average vehicle. It is important that you know how to best handle these vehicles before heading out on the road. When wondering how to road trip with a dog, you will want to keep them as safe as possible. There are a number of things to consider while operating the RV. Due to the size of the RV, the blind spot is much wider. You should recruit someone else to help you. Your spouse, perhaps, could sit upfront with you and be a second set of eyes. They can help you cover the whole road and notice any possible obstacles. By being a sensible driver, you will keep everyone, including your dog, safe.


Exercise is essential for every dog’s health. We take them on walks, play fetch in the backyard, and let them burn off their pent-up energy. While pondering how to road trip with a dog, travelers often struggle with giving their dogs the exercise they need. Whether you’re traveling in an RV or a car, your dog will have little room to move around. This is why frequent stops are imperative. You should visit the rest stops along your route. This will give the dog an opportunity to get out of the cramped space, stretch out his/her legs, and gain that much-needed exercise.

When taking your dog out for a walk, make sure that they are properly restrained. If a dog gets loose, they will be in unfamiliar territory. Finding your pup may be extra difficult. Leashes and harnesses can undergo wear and tear over time. If you notice a leash starting to fray, it is time to get a new one. This is especially pertinent on a road trip. As a common courtesy, make sure you have plenty of bags to pick up your dog’s waste. You may not know how often your dog will “go” so make sure to pack some extra bags amongst your supplies.

Pet friendly lodging

Imagine you’ve done all the preliminary planning for your road trip. You’ve got all your ducks in a row and are all prepared to go with your canine friend in tow. As you enter the hotel, you are shocked to find that they are not pet friendly. Doing research beforehand is essential.

Unless you are traveling in an RV, you will need a place for you and your dog to spend the night. You will find that there are a number of pet friendly hotels that will accommodate your pet’s needs. If you are consulting a travel website, they can offer suggestions on these lodgings. As you’re deciding how to road trip with a dog, you can find a pet friendly hotel at your ultimate destination. Unlike flying, road trips take a much longer time to reach the destination. Road trippers usually make frequent stops along the way and spend some nights in motel rooms. Not much planning goes into finding motels. Travelers will usually just pay attention to the road signs and find a motel. You might hit a snafu if your chosen motel does not allow pets. Research is imperative to prevent this situation. While mapping out your route, keep note of the available motels along the route. Even if you plan down to the tiniest detail, you might not know exactly where you will stop for the night. You could, however, have an understanding of what motels are on the way and whether they are pet friendly.

Protecting your vehicle and your family

While out on the road, we want to protect our family at all costs. That includes protecting your dog. Drivers should always practice caution and responsibility. Accidents are devastating for all involved. By practicing safe driving, you will help to avoid or mitigate the damage caused in a motor vehicle accident. Accidents, however, do still happen. Sometimes the accidents result in someone being injured. In this case, you would be advised to contact a quality car accident injury lawyer. Accidents can happen at any time, so you should not wait until a road trip to find an attorney. While pondering how to road trip with a dog, keeping the dog safe from injury should be a high priority.

Nobody wants to be in a car accident, but it still sometimes happens. If it does happen to you, you’re not alone. After medical treatment, contacting authorities, and an attorney, getting the necessary repairs on your vehicle is vital. You will want to contact an auto collision service for help. If you’re in your hometown, this is a simple procedure. If you are out on a road trip, it is a bit trickier. You will likely be in unfamiliar territory and not know who to call. While out on the road be sure to stop in some visitor centers or rest stops. They should have information on the local services they offer. The local authorities might also offer some suggestions as well.

Insurance is another way to protect your family and the dog. Before heading out on the road, make sure you are up to date on all of your auto insurance group details. You will be protected in any unforeseen circumstance. Some insurance companies even offer plans that will help your dog if something were to happen to him/her.

When deciding how to road trip with a dog, you want your furry friend to take part in these happy memories. It is important to be prepared first. Armed with the right research, supplies, information, and even a lawyer, you can have a happy and safe trip with your dog.

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