No Family Member Left Behind: How To Road Trip With Your Dog

A lady driving with her dog in passenger seat of car

1.85min read

Published 14 July 2020


Tips for taking your pet on a road trip:

  • Know the route and where you can stop along it

  • Double check your dog's credentials like tag, microchip etc

  • Get your car pooch ready

  • Make sure you have access to water

  • Know you won't be able to leave your pet in the car






Owning a pet can limit your options when vacation time rolls around.  A road trip, however, is one type of excursion where you can definitely invite your furry friends along.  Road tripping is easy with pets because you can make minimal adjustments to your plans while keeping them happy and safe.  Whether you're in the car or exploring your destinations, having a solid plan before you leave the house can be infinitely helpful.  Your dog-friendly holiday will come together quickly with a little extra readiness, and both you and your pooch can let the good holiday times roll on!


dog in boot of car owner reading road map

1. Know your route and what's on it

Plan where you'll be heading and research all pet-friendly businesses you may need along the way.  From hotels to campsites to restaurants to veterinary clinics, you'll need to know where your four-legged friend is welcome before you get there.


dog in car

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2. Double-check your dog's credentials

Is your dog properly tagged?  Is he microchipped and is his microchip information up to date?  In the event of an escape, being prepared will help you find your pet as quickly as possible in an unfamiliar place.


woman driving POV in car

3. Get your car pooch-ready

If you're like most people, you probably have a food wrapper or two, some spare change, or an old shirt floating around the back seat of your car.  Before you head out on the road, tidy your car and spend a good amount of time cleaning it thoroughly. Abandoned trinkets or food items that have fallen between the seats may be long forgotten, but your pup could dig them out and swallow an impending disaster.


dogs drinking water in boot of car

4. Think about water accessibility

Make sure that your dog has access to water while you're on the road.  Two options for travel watering are a non-spill bowl or a water feeder to sit in the window.  Both of these provide your pet with a way to stay hydrated while you're busy driving.  Make sure to change the water out at every stop and offer fresh water while you're resting, as some dogs don't like to drink while in a moving vehicle.


dog with owner

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5. Know that you won't be able to leave your pet in the car

On hot summer days, car temperatures can rise exponentially.  It's never safe to leave your dog unattended in a vehicle for more than a couple minutes, so realize that gas and potty breaks for you are going to have to be speedier than you're used to.  When possible, opt for rest stops along the highway instead of truck stops--most of them are outdoors and pet friendly. If you want to explore a few non-dog friendly places during the day, or a fancy restaurant at night, consider booking a local Pet Sitter for evening care or Doggy Day Care near your accommodation.

This guest blog was written by PetCloud CEO and Founder, Deb Morrison. PetCloud matches Pet Owners with insured, police checked, Pet Sitters who will mind your pet while you're on holiday.    


pets road trip

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