You’ve decided to travel by car and bring along your best friend . . . your faithful dog companion. Before you embark on your road trip, below are a few tips for safe and enjoyable travels.
1. Prepare Your Dog: If your dog isn’t used to travelling by car for extended periods of time than it can make for a long and miserable experience. Bring your dog along for a car trips greater than a half hour before your big road trip.
2. Crate Your Dog: A crate will keep your dog safe as well as make your pet feel secure. Just make sure your pooch has gotten used to the crate with prior tip, its well ventilated and has a comfortable mat/rug.
3. Walk The Dog: Before you hit the road, make sure your dog has gotten plenty of exercise prior to the trip. Your furry friend will be more relaxed and likely to fall asleep for a good part of the trip making it a pleasant experience.
4. ID The Dog: If you haven’t microchipped your dog yet, you may reconsider as it’s the best way for a lost dog to reconnect with an owner. Also, make sure any dog tags are up to date.
5. Hydrate The Dog: Have plenty of water available to keep your pet well-hydrated. Best not to feed a dog a full meal before the trip to help avoid car sickness.
6. Take Dog Breaks: Plan for stops ahead of time to give your dog fresh air, potty breaks and plenty of exercise, especially on a long road trip.
7. Don’t Leave Dog Unattended: Make sure you take your dog with you for any stops where you leave the car. It is not okay to crack the window and in some states, you can be arrested for animal cruelty.
8. Health Check Your Dog: It’s a good idea to have your dog checked by your vet before taking a long road trip and any prescriptions updated and brought with you.
9. Keep Kids In Check: Your children may get restless and an easy distraction can be the family dog. Have a chat with your kids that the dog should be comforted, if needed, but not teased in any way.
10. Keep Dogs Inside the Vehicle: For those traveling in pick-up trucks, don’t leave your dog in the open back area of the vehicle. This is extremely dangerous as a dog may fall out or get injured during a sudden stop, accident or road debris.