Whether you are driving across the country, or flying across the globe, traveling alone is never fun. Every trip is better with your pup by your side.
And luckily, traveling with dogs is getting easier and easier. However, it still takes a lot of preparation to make dog travel possible. You want your puppy to be as happy and comfortable as it can be.
Aside from stocking up on the best dog food for your furry friend, there are a few things you can do before departure, and while you are traveling, to make your vacation enjoyable for the both of you.
Keep reading below to discover our top dog travel trips for painless, comfortable, and relaxing travels, wherever you end up.
Looking to travel with your dog for the first time? Don't start with a big, long-distance trip. Even if you have your sights set on that cross-country, multi-week road trip, you'll want to practice traveling with your dog first. Instead, start with a small trip close to home.
Take a two or three-hour drive, and stay for just one night. See how your pup does in the car, and while staying in a new environment.
You also want to test out your gear and ensure you have everything you need before traveling for longer periods of time.
Choose a Dog-Friendly Destination
Some destinations are better suited to traveling dogs than others. Big cities, such as New York City or Chicago might be popular travel destinations. But the sights, sounds, and throngs of people in a big city might be overwhelming for your dog, especially if they are used to the space of a rural or suburban neighborhood.
Instead, choose a place where dogs are free to explore. Choose a city that offers outdoor recreation, to ensure your dog has just as much fun as you do on your trip.
Instead of Denver, for example, choose the nearby city of Colorado Springs. The city is smaller and surrounded by the great outdoors.
There are plenty of outdoor areas, hiking trails, and lakes where your dog is free to roam (though some places require dogs to be leashed). And you'll also find everything you love about big cities, such as craft breweries, exceptional dining, and even a dog-friendly pub and restaurant that gives back to its community.
Base Accommodations Around Your Puppy or Dog
Travel with pets can be difficult, in large part due to accommodation restrictions. Many hotels and short-term rentals don't allow dogs. And it's best not to sneak your dog in when they aren't welcome, as that's a sure-fire way to cut your trip short.
Rather, research the most dog-friendly accommodations. There are plenty of RV parks and campgrounds that welcome dogs. And if you're lucky, you'll be able to find pet-friendly hotels and BNB's as well. Though some rentals will charge an additional pet fee.
Not all pet-friendly facilities are very pet-friendly, however. Try choosing a location with green space, or one located near a park or trail.
Everyone has a preferred travel style. Some like to move around a lot, while others like to travel slower, staying in one location for days, if not weeks at a time.
Most dogs need time to settle into a location before they feel safe and comfortable. Plan your itinerary around them, and try staying in each destination for at least a few days to give them time to adjust.
If your pup is on a schedule at home, try to maintain the schedule as much as possible on the road regarding walking, feeding, and sleeping times.
Pack Some Comfort Items
Your dog is going to experience plenty of new sights, sounds, and smells while they travel. But it's important to pack some of their familiar items, too.
This might include their
- Favourite toys
- Favourite food bowl
Bring Along the Best Dog Food
If you want your dog to be the happiest and healthiest dog they can be, you need to be feeding them the best dog food you can find. This is especially true when traveling, as your dog will be under additional stress.
Pack Go! Solutions wet food recipes packaged in reclosable Tetra Pak® cartons, perfect for an on-the -go trip.
Pocket-sized paks of solutions-based nutrition
Formulated to provide solutions for dogs’ unique dietary needs including picky eating, dandruff or dull coat, and food allergies or sensitivities.
View wet food recipes
When traveling, it's best to continue feeding your dog the same food that they've been eating at home for the past few weeks. Bring along extra food, just in case.
Find a Dog Sitter in Advance
If planning a night out on the town, or an adventure where dogs can't or shouldn't come along, find a sitter ahead of time.
The city you are traveling to may have a reputable dog vacation facility, where you can drop your pup off for a few hours, or even overnight. Or, if heading out in the middle of the day, you can have a dog walker or dog sitter look after them for you.
The key is researching people and places ahead of time, to ensure you choose the right caretaker.
Don't forget to look up veterinarians at your destination, in case of an emergency.
Pick Up Some Extra Dog Travel Accessories
There are plenty of things you are going to need to make your trip easier for both of you.
A dog brush will help control shedding hair in your car or hotel room. An LED light collar, or light attachment, can boost visibility when walking at night.
Plan on getting some exercise while you travel? Or do you want your hands to be free, so you can take lots of photos? Bring a hands-free leash. A pet first aid kit is a good safety measure. And a collapsible water bowl is extremely convenient.
Never Remove Their Collar and Tags
When traveling, you never know what could happen. Play it safe and keep your dog collar and identification tags on them at all times.
If you plan to travel with your dog frequently, you could also invest in extra travel safety by purchasing a GPS dog collar or tracker. If your dog ever got lost, you could see its location in real-time using an app on your phone.
Preparation Is Key
Dog travel requires a lot of preparation. However, a trip with a dog can be extremely rewarding if done correctly. It's all about where you go, how you get there, and what you bring along with you that will determine if your puppy loves to travel, or hates it.
To ensure a happy and healthy pup at home or abroad, you need to be feeding them the best dog food available. Here at Go! Solutions, our pet nutritionists have crafted the highest quality dog food recipes.
Check out our store locator to see if your dog's favourite Go! Solutions food is available in the city you are visiting.