The world famous coach Cesar Millan has taught us plenty about how we can improve our relationships with our furry friends. We learned not just about their behavior, what they need, what they don’t, but how to create a truly dog-friendly environment. Throughout the years he also shared a bunch of tips and recommendations on how to prepare for a long trip with a dog. Here are the top 10.
1. Get a dog crate
It’s completely natural to feel resistant to putting your dog into a crate. However, it is by far the safest way to travel with your dog. Just make sure that the doggy crate is the right size and that is certified crash-tested.
Plastic reinforced with fiberglass and aluminum crates are considered as the best and widely recommended by Cesar, as well as almost every other dog expert in the world.
2. Make regular breaks
Driving for 12 hours straight in your car is unhealthy for both people and dog alike. Probably more for dogs than for humans, but nevertheless it is not recommendable. In a way, traveling with a dog is like traveling with a child. You can’t spend a half a day without a stop. The dog might look like it is okay with it, but it’s not. One break every three hours should do just fine.
3. Bowl and water
As previously said, traveling with a dog is like traveling with a kid. As we all know a kid needs his snacks and drinks. This means that your dog will need water and something to eat on a regular basis. Keeping a small bag of dog food, a bowl, and some water near you is always a good idea.
4. Book your stay at a pet-friendly place
Whether you book a hotel, AirBnB, or anything else make sure that the place is pet-friendly and that they charge only one time per pet. There are those that will try to charge you multiple times for all sorts of things. Try to avoid those places by carefully looking at their pet policies before making the actual booking.
5. Locate pet clinics close to your travel route
This is more of a precaution in case your dog gets sick during your trip. If that happens you will know where to get help. Also, make sure you pack:
- Medications for an ongoing condition your dog might have (if any).
- Pet insurance
- Papers proving your dog is vaccinated.
- Dog Sedatives
- Motion sickness meds.
Dogs like to wander and explore. A microchipped dog doesn’t mean it won’t try to explore new places without you, but there is no chance it will be lost. There are collars that tend to slip off. In both cases, a microchip makes sure that you can always find it, no matter what.
7. Bring a tick remover and flea comb
Don’t leave your home without it. If you forget it, make sure you buy them while on the road. You may travel from city to city, and don’t stop at any farms or rural areas. However, you never know when you might need them.
8. Bring a dog toy
A stuffed Pikachu or a tennis ball, or some other toy your dog likes will do a great job. That way they will be occupied playing and not get excited. The dog will be occupied playing with its toy and you will be able to focus on the road ahead.
9. Chicken broth if your pup gets ill while on the road
In case you are in the middle of nowhere and your dog feels sickly, add some chicken broth to its water. The chicken broth is full of nutrients and it will make it feel better. Of course, that is just a temporary fix, calling the vet afterward is always a smart thing to do.
10. Make a short one day trip before going on a longer one.
This will teach you tons about how your dog behaves on the road, what it needs, what it minds, and so on. Often there are small things that will help you make small adjustments that will make the trip even more memorable and pleasant for you as well as your dog. All the tips and recommendations are very important and applicable to every dog.
On the other hand, a test trip, is about learning how your own dog behaves on the road as no dog is the same. Once you do it, you will feel more confident in yourself and in the adventure that lies ahead.
You’ve made all the preparations needed, so now it’s time to hit the road and enjoy your trip.