As a dog owner, your pup is part of the family; you want to take them with you when you leave on an RV trip. In fact, the ability to travel with your pet, in a homey environment, is one of the best things about traveling in an RV; you can easily take your dogs with you, without having to worry about finding a ‘pet-friendly’ hotel. With few exceptions, RV and state and national parks are very pet-friendly.
While RV travel with your dogs is relatively simple, there are a few things you need to know. Follow these tips to make sure both you, and your dog, have a stress free trip.
Crate Your Dogs While Driving
Don’t let your dog walk around the motorhome while you’re driving, that’s not a good idea. Not only are you putting your pets at risk, but you could create a dangerous situation for yourself, and everyone on the road. If your dog jumps into the driver’s area while you’re on the highway, that could be dangerous. Instead, make sure your dogs have a secure place in the motorhome. This could be a crate, or a doggie seat belt, where they can be secured during the trip. They will likely be more comfortable like this anyway, and they may just fall asleep during the drive. You could also put up a baby gate, and lock them out of the cockpit area of the motorhome. If you are a couple, the passenger should be in charge of keeping the dogs calm, and out of the way of the driver. The sofa in a motorhome is often a good place to secure dogs. Look for a solution that works for your needs, based on the size and temperament of your dogs.
Take Potty Breaks
Both you and the dogs should get out of the RV every few hours, during a long day of driving. Make it a point to stop at least once every few hours during a long road trip to walk the dogs. Also, let them have a drink, and enjoy the sights and scents of a new environment. There are usually rest areas along the way, with nice designated areas for your dog to sniff around and do their business.
Don’t Take Your A/C for Granted
Even if your RV has air conditioning, don’t take it for granted that it will keep your dogs cool on a hot summer day. If the electrical system overloads at the campground, when everyone runs their air conditioners at once, you could lose power. Then your dog could be trapped in a hot RV if you’re away. Park in the shade, or keep your awning out. Be careful in the summer, and always be on the safe side to make sure your dog is safe in the heat.
Keep Your Dog on a Leash and Under Control
Even if a campground is dog-friendly, and even if you know your dogs are harmless people-lovers, you shouldn’t assume that everyone feels the same as you do about dogs. Some people are afraid of dogs, and others simply don’t like them. Whatever the case, show respect for those around you, and keep your dog under control at all times.