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Just Can’t Wait To Get On The Road Again…With Your Pup? Read This First!

A road trip is an American tradition! Packing up the family, loading up the car, and hitting the open road is a great way to spend a summer day – or week! Traveling by car is great because it means you can bring your furry family member along too. Riding with Fido takes some extra preparation and planning in order to ensure a safe, happy, and fun road trip — but we’ve got you covered!

Read through these tips and get ready for a stress-free road trip with your dog!

Does your dog really like the car?

A dog that hates riding in the car is not going to enjoy a long road trip. That’s just common sense. If your pup despises being your co-pilot, a road trip might not be their idea of a good time. It may be best to leave them with a trusted pet sitter while you are traveling, or get the help of a trainer to help your pup overcome their car anxiety. Don’t force your dog to do something that they are not prepared for.

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Take Frequent Breaks

Take a break every few hours and allow your pet to relieve themselves, as well as get some exercise in. Many rest areas have dog runs, where you can let your dog run free without a leash to let some of their energy out. You may get lucky and run into another high energy pup who needs a playmate. You should always make time to stop and at least take your dog for a short walk every couple of hours on a road trip. Plus it’s healthy for you too!

Bring Water And A Dish

Sure, you can find water to buy at almost any rest stop, but a water bowl? That might prove more challenging. Prepare ahead of time by packing a travel water and food bowl that you can store in your car for long trips. You can find a great travel water and food bowl here.

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Pack Snacks

Just like you probably pack granola bars and other snacks for your family during the drive, you should pack some snacks for your pup too! Bring a bag of their dog food so that you can stick on the same feeding schedule that they have at home, and bring some of their favorite treats to keep them happy and full during the trip.

Bring A Leash

You never know when you will need a leash. It’s probably one of the most important things you can bring with you as a dog owner. Keeping your dog close to you at rest stops, in hotel lobbies, and at national landmarks is important for their safety and your peace of mind. You can find a great leash here.

Restrain Your Pup

A dog with its head out the window is a familiar sight on the road, but it’s also a dangerous one. Opt instead for a dog seat harness, car carrier, or a crate to keep your dog properly restrained while the car is moving. You don’t want them jumping into your lap while you are driving, or getting into something they are not supposed to while you are stuck in heavy traffic.  Having them secured in the car instead of moving about freely will also help protect them in the case of an accident.

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Pack Toys

Just like you need an activity to keep busy during a road trip, so does your dog. Packing a favorite chew toy or treat is a great way to keep your pup entertained during a long trip. These bully sticks are great because they are nutritious and delicious, and will keep your pup busy! Get your own here.

Plan Your Stops

If your road trip is going to last more than a day, you will need to figure out your sleeping arrangements. Keep in mind that not all hotels are pet-friendly. Planning out specific stops in advance is a responsible thing to do for both you and your pup. Make sure to pack their kennel if your dog does not sleep in bed with you so they don’t destroy any hotel property while you are away or sleeping.

There you go! Now you can plan a road trip that’s fun for the whole family — Fido included! Grab a map and plan out your next family adventure, and keep these tips in mind as you travel.

What are your road trip tips?

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Alli B. was born and raised in the Great Lakes State. She is a proud dog mom to an adorable mutt named Rue, a three-legged pup named Tripp, and a crazy cat mom to two feisty felines, Louie and Pikachu. She spends her days exploring all that Michigan has to offer with her husband and their fur-babies.