By Madeline Klein on June 19, 2018.
You’ve got your podcasts loaded and your snacks packed. Your car is ready for your long-awaited road trip. However, there’s one small snag you forgot to plan for, and it is staring up at you with puppy dog eyes. That’s right, it’s your dog.
If you’ve ever traveled more than a short drive with a dog, you know anything can happen, and it can sometimes be an unpleasant experience. We’ve got some ideas for making that long road trip a little more manageable, for both you and your pup.
1. Invest in a pet hammock
A pet seat hammock is a covering that hooks onto the headrests in your backseat. This brilliant invention not only keeps your car from being covered in dog hair, but it also can be a comfort for your pet. It can help a more restless dog feel calm and protected while on a longer car trip.
2. Hold off on breakfast
While we don’t want your pet to go hungry on the trip, vets suggest that you don’t feed your dog right before a long road trip. Eating before the drive can upset your dog’s stomach, and could lead to car sickness during the drive. Smaller meals while on the road can help avoid an upset stomach, and keep your pooch happy and healthy in the car.
3. Pack a pet first-aid kit
You likely already have a human-focused first aid kit in your car. However, when traveling with a pet, you will need different essentials in case of an emergency. You’ll want things like a self-cling bandage that won’t stick to fur, styptic powder to stop small cuts from bleeding, or hydrogen peroxide in case they’ve ingested something bad. You don’t need much, but a few key items can make a world of difference when you may be far from a vet.
4. Plan your route
Most plan a road trip out in advance anyway, but you’ll want to make a few extra notes for a trip with your pet. For example, you’ll want to be sure you can stop every 3-4 hours and let your dog stretch their legs and have a potty break. Humans don’t like sitting for long, and neither do dogs. You should also make a note of vet clinics in case of emergencies, pet friendly accommodations and rest-stops.
Planning a long road trip with your dog can seem overwhelming, but can be stress-free with some extra prep beforehand. The biggest thing you should have to worry about is where to go and what adventures you’ll go on during your trip.