Is a Dog Road Trip in Your Future?

Dogs are social, pack animals that love to be in your company, particularly on a good road trip. Knowing a few good road trip ideas will give you and your pooch the opportunity to bond in a new way.

One way to provide mental simulation for dogs is to take them with you while cruising around town. You don’t need an official road trip planner; just take your pooch with you while running errands and let them keep you company while you belt out your favorite road trip songs. A quick walk at each stop will provide your dog with both physical and mental stimulation. Giving your dog the three S’s – Sniffing, Socialization, and Stimulation – will help him maintain a balanced, well-rounded lifestyle.

Heck, you don’t even need to have a destination; just get in the car and drive around the block. Your dog lives in the moment and enjoys the journey more than the destination. Your dog going on a road trip is like them winning the lottery!

If you must accompany your husband to some dreaded destination like Home Depot, take your dog! You’ll have the great excuse of walking your dog around the parking lot while your husband strolls every aisle of tools and paint. Then, head to Starbucks and roll down your pooch’s window at the drive-through. They’ll get lots of ooh’s and ah’s from the cashier.

Don’t have plans one evening? Have a date night with your dog; plan activities that revolve around your dog’s wellness. Go to a pet store (i.e., Pet Smart) where your dog is exposed to a variety of sights, sounds, and other animals in a safe location. Other stores like Tractor Supply and some Lowes also allow you to shop accompanied by your dog. There are many restaurants where you can eat outside with your dog. All of these give your dog the three S’s which means they’ll sleep much more soundly when date night comes to an end.

If your dog has difficulty moving around the house due to age or arthritis, a dog road trip just might be the ticket for getting them outside to see new sights without putting unnecessary pressure on their joints. If you’re thinking that your vehicle is too tall for your dog to jump into comfortably, there are plenty of options for dog ramps for SUV and car access that make it very convenient for your dog to enter and exit your vehicle. The alternative is that they are just sitting at the house alone when they’d much rather be in your company.

Remember that safety always comes first on doggy car trips. Due to flying dust particles and oncoming vehicles, it’s dangerous to let your dog hang her head fully out the window. But, if it’s safe, roll down the window a bit and let your dog breathe in a little fresh air. There are plenty of options for dog travel crates or dog car seats if necessary. Also, factor in the weather. Dogs should never be left in a hot car while you are shopping. But, cooler days, a favorite road trip snack, and a small water bowl will keep your dog totally satisfied while you’re running quick errands.

So when you’re planning short road trips around town, break out the dog ramp, pack an extra bag for your dog, and invite them to tag along. You won’t have a better co-pilot!