One thing that is common among dog owners is that you love your pet unconditionally. You would do anything for them, including traveling to places with them. This could include taking your dog on a road trip in the car with you, but this doesn't mean they enjoy this experience as much as you do.
Traveling with your dog is not as easy as it may seem. Chances are you and your dog both do not like car rides, so the thought of spending a long time together on a road trip may be unpleasant. However, there are many things you can do to make this experience better for everyone involved. In order to prepare your dog for a long trip, there are certain steps that should be taken before getting on the road.
Therefore, it's important to prepare your dog before you start preparing yourself for that journey through the mountains or along the coastline. Here are some tips to ensure that both of you arrive at your destination safely and happily.
1) Familiarize Your Dog With The Car
The first thing you should do is familiarize your dog with the car he will be traveling in. Make sure his ride is comfortable and safe by giving him a blanket and some toys to play with. Of course, you should also make sure your seats don't have any of his hair on them since your dog might be tempted to lay on them (and that will not be fun for either of you!)
2) Familiarize Yourself With The Car
This tip might not be as important as the one above, but if you aren't used to driving with a dog in the car then doing this will definitely help. If there are certain maneuvers that require a lot of thinking or work from you, try practicing those first before taking your furry friend along for a ride with you.
3) Start Slow And Reward Your Dog For Good Behavior
If this is the first time your dog is experiencing a car ride, start slow. Start by taking short trips around the block to let them get used to how it feels to be inside of a moving vehicle. You should also make sure you are giving your dog lots of praise whenever he does something good in the car (like staying calm). Do this for at least three weeks before attempting longer trips with him.
4) Bring Treats Your Dog Loves
If you want to keep your dog's attention throughout the duration of your trip, then bring along his favorite treats. Make sure they are big enough that he can't eat too many of them and cause himself health problems (the same thing goes with toys and chews). Keeping your pup occupied with their favorite food will make the experience much more relaxing for him.
5) Stop For Frequent Breaks
You should make sure to follow every one of these tips during your road trip, but you should also stop at fun places along the way. These are great opportunities for you and your dog to get out of the car, go for a nice walk together, and spend some time in nature. Make sure to give them enough time to do their business before getting back into the car, though... unless they decide they want to relieve themselves inside of it!
6) Have A Backup Plan If Things Don't Go As Planned
Finally, you need to have a backup plan if things don't go as planned on this trip with your pup. Have a backup leash, collar, and a bag of dog food. Keep your vet's phone number handy, and if you are traveling long distances have a plan for both of you to stay somewhere overnight. These are just some steps that will help guarantee an enjoyable trip for both of you!
7) Make sure they have been to the vet recently
Before going anywhere with them, ensure that your pet has been given proper vaccinations from their veterinarian. Keep in mind that dogs typically need more vaccinations than humans during their lifetime because of situations such as rabies and heartworm disease. If your pet does not have all the necessary vaccinations, do not allow them to travel. Visit their doctor and see what other vaccinations they should have before traveling so you know for sure they are safe to take with you on a long road trip.
Going on a trip with your pet friend is a great experience. It gives them the opportunity to see new things and experience something that they would never get to see or do in their normal day-to-day activities. Even though your dog will enjoy this, you still need to make these preparations for them before going on any trip of significant length.