As fun as it can be to take your dog out exploring on a road trip, as hectic as it can be to actually provide for your dog whilst driving. This is why we’ve provided you with a few dog-friendly pointers, just so you and your favorite furry friend can enjoy the best of many hassle free trips together.
1. Give your dog the chance to get acquainted with your car slowly and well in advance too; it’s usually best to start with the engine off too. A great idea would be to tempt your dog into the car using small treats. By control feeding your dog in the car for a few days, you’ll help him build positive associations with your vehicle.
2. Setting a good routine helps. We all know the importance of having our own space in the car, our furry friends are no different, which is why an established seat is an absolute must for transporting your dog. Preferably, a comfortable cushion to lie on is optimum so that your dog can ease into the ride.
3. Always make sure that your dog is safe and secure. By securing your dog, you’ll avoid unnecessary risks; this may either be in the form of using a special belt, dog carrier or a barrier between the passenger area and the boot of the car.
4. Take extra care of the windows. A very small break should be left open in your windows, as some dogs tend to get overexcited and may excessively lean over the side of the car too much, causing a fall.
5. Short breaks along the way will provide your dogs with a much-deserved chance to run and play. So before you leave, find a dog-friendly rest area where your dog can get out and run, and remember to offer plenty of water at every break.
6. When leaving the car, you should get out first, and only then let your dog out. Go around to the door closest to him, and give a clear command for him to exit, just so you’re sure it’s safe enough to disembark.
7. Treating your dog to a heavy snack before a car ride is definitely a big no; you can, however, give him a few treats along the way to make the trip a bit sweeter. Some dogs may experience car sickness and should be avoided overfeeding, especially on long rides. We also recommend that you neither feed your dog two hours prior to a long ride nor on the morning of the ride.
8. If you happen to stop for a quick run in at a store, don’t keep your dog waiting in the car in the summer heat. Even a few minutes in a hot car can be dangerous. Always keep your windows appropriately open to keep your pet both comfortable and safe. When it’s hot, it’s always better to take your dog along with you.
9. Try and walk your dog prior to and during the trip, in case they need to pee.
10. Dogs should be on a leash at all times, especially if you are visiting new areas.
11. Dogs should know “leave it” and “off” in case they pick up (any) substance from the ground.