Traveling With Dogs, Guilty. Now We’re Doing It Right….

Yup, I admit it, we were guilty. We were the couple who were always traveling with our dogs, we were lucky, nothing happened to one of the "kids".

We always had BIG dogs, ALL rescued, and always 3. "A PACK", my vet said.
These were not our only dogs, but these dogs were young and ready to "romp"! They were in shape and ready to travel!

Sweet Denargo

Sweet Denargo


Denargo ~ named after a street in downtown Denver, where we found him~ 
Black Lab / Rot / Angel Mix.

Zepplin ~ found on a side street in Denver, named after my favorite band, at the time--
Rusty Lab / Chow / RockStar.

Kassi ~ found along the road in New Mexico, the local animal shelter knew her name~
Tan Chow/+Coyote?/ FormerDogKiller. 

Zepplin (left)    Kassi (right)

Okay, The Scoop.......Here's What We Did......

We owned a large Ram truck with a cap and the back was their travel area. The cap had long screen windows, so they had great air flow without having to poke their head out,
but they were not crated or restrained in anyway.
We did make sure the pups had some exercise before we started our road tips. These three were always full of energy! This helped to calm them down.
After the dogs were loaded up, Jon would slowly pull away from our house, the dogs would stand for a few minutes, then take to their blankets and rest.

We Do Things Different Now............

It's a hard decision to know what's best for your dog's comfort, safety and personality.
We did start crating our dogs for travel.

So, how will your pets ride? Crate? Harness? Divider? What else do should you bring?

I'm going to give you 5 GREAT links (below) that may help!  Whatever you decide on, please make sure your pet is comfortable, can stretch completely out and move around a bit. More tips to follow, so please head on back.

Alas, Our Rockstar Was A Puker...........

Does your dog experience Motion Sickness?
Zepplin was all muscle, loved to go, but had a hard time with motion. About 1/2 mile down the road, he would "up-chuck", even if we didn't feed him, he would heave. After the second trip, we took him to the vet and he gave us some meds to calm his nerves but that only made him drowsy. No fun for a Rockstar. So we tried our own method and it worked!

It took about three weeks.

We put all the dogs in their crates, in the truck, for the training. We took very short trips, I mean 2 block trips, then let him out to walk around a bit. The other dogs were left inside the truck, so he would want to get back with his "buds". The next day it would be 5 blocks and so on.

For this particular guy, it did the trick, so we were heading back to the mountains for camping and hiking in no time.

Tips And Links.......

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    The first one is for selecting a Crate, here is a direct link to Youtube. LINK
    I know it can still be overwhelming, when I was selling dog products and went to the pet shows, it was STILL overwhelming. What did help us was REVIEWS, I always read pet owner reviews and look for crash test videos and results.
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    The next one is for a travel harnesses LINK
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    Another is for Dividers (barriers between the front seat and back). LINK
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    A great site to check out is the Center For Pet Safety, here is a direct link on how to select a harness. LINK
    They have crash test videos and results there too along with a location guide to find dog supplies AND pet recalls.
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    This site, created by the USDA gives you information regarding air travel; Domestically; Internationally AND State to State! USDA FOR PETS

So, you decided on the crate for travel, what now?

Getting your pets used to a crate is a process, but really, no big deal. It's worth it. 
We were pleasantly surprised!

Here's what worked for us............
Start by putting the crates inside the house, in an area your pets are comfortable playing or sleeping, then put comfy pads or blankets in the crates, favorite toys or chew bones.
​We also bought a new toy for each of the dogs.
We would toss treats in the crate, toys, play a little inside and outside the crate.
We did this for about a week, leaving the door open. Then we closed the door for a bit and told them we would be right back and they gave us, you know, the pouty stare. We would leave them in for a little bit longer each time, then up to an hour.
Next, short trips to the park, in the crates with comfy pads-of course.

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    Collars with name tags and phone numbers. If you are at campsite, there might not be cell service, so bring an extra blank tag, so you can write the number of the camping site on the tag and attach to the dog's collars.
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    Collapsible water bowl with hook for day pack or belt or travel water bottles for pets.
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    Poop bags, poop bag container until a trash or recycling bin is available.
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    Food, Portioned out for trip/bowls. TIP : Some dogs get too excited to eat or uncomfortable with the new environment. We take a small container of vanilla yogurt. They love it and can be mixed or put at the side of the food. It has worked for us!
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    Photos of pets in case they would get lost.
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    Your Vet's number; medications and medical records. 
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    Pet Shampoo; old towels; pet dirty clothes bag.
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    Outdoor dog bed/crate or blanket--TOYS!
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    Booties or Paw balm. Although the paw booties are great, not all dogs love them. If you're on a summer trip and  the concrete or pavement is hot, your dog CAN GET BLISTERS! 
    Denargo did, and we felt horrible, she was only on the pavement a short time.  We now take along PURA Paw Balm whenever our pups are along, great for healing and small cuts. Here's a where you can buy it. PURA. Great in the winter too! 
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    Pet First Aid App from the American Red Cross! Great app! Here is the link from Google Play Store: HERE

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Staying at a pet hotel? NO PROBLEM! Just read this post for helpful tips about Pet Hotels!


Would love to hear about your Dog Trip Experiences or Tips, Please comment below.


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