Road trippin’ with your pup – Do’s and Don’ts

The dogs get SO excited when they get to go for a car ride. All I have to do is jiggle the keys – and they get up and run to the door. Recently, we took them on a longer than usual road trip where they were in the car for over 9 hours. We could tell that Roxy got a little uneasy having to sit in the car for so long. Of course we made several stops for potty and water breaks – we didn’t want her getting dehydrated. She does love to stick her head out the window every now and then to get some fresh air – and take in the views 🙂

In Arizona, we have to be exceptionally careful when traveling with our pets in the summertime.Today it reached 117 degrees here in Phoenix! Here are some tips that Brad and I learned from our road trip across the desert we thought we’d share.

1. Have PLENTY of water stocked in your cooler. Make sure your pup has access to a bowl of water at least every 30 minutes. You’ll be amazed at how much they will want to drink. Roxy and Quincey downed a full bottle just about every time we offered it to them.

2. Be prepared to make several more stops than usual. We kept our eye on the dogs, and stopped when we could tell they were getting anxious – probably once ever 1.5 hours. When stopped, find a place that is cool and in the shade – be careful of hot asphalt as it will burn their paws.

3. Throw their collar or a bandana in the cooler with the ice water for a while, then put it around their neck to help cool them down.

4. Never leave your dogs alone in the car, even if the windows are rolled down. When traveling and are in unfamiliar areas, you never know what will spook your pup or make it jump out of the car. Also, rolling the windows down does very little to cool the car. Always have the air conditioning on, and someone in the car with them.

5. Avoid feeding them too much food or snacks along the way. Stick to chew toys and water. Some dogs do get carsick -so be careful!

6. In Golden Retriever fashion, you can also expect your car to be filled with dog hair during your trip. The stress and heat when traveling will cause them to shed more than usual. There are a lot of fancy car seat coverings you can buy – but we’ve found that a fitted bed sheet works like a charm. Tuck it into the seats really good so it stays tight. It washes very easily, too.

7. Our dogs are very good about sitting in the back seat, they never distract me when driving. However, if your dog does not stay in place, it would be wise to harness them to the seatbelt so you can drive safely.

Do you have any other tips for car rides? We’d love to hear them! Safe travels everyone!

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