Road trips are a quintessential rite of passage when the Spring and Summer months are within reach. As much fun as road-tripping it to an unknown destination can be, if your pet is riding along, her safety can easily be overlooked when the rubber hits the road. I can never stress enough how important a car seat is for your pet while riding in the car (since I've drilled it into your brains about a million times)! Even a travel crate or the super soft (yet totally travel friendly) Sleepypod strapped in with the seat belt is way safer than having your pet roaming around the cab which can not only be hazardous to your driving, but your fave pooch or cat can potentially go flying if you happen to slam on the brakes. And that's never a good thing!
I've rounded up some more food for thought about what to bring with you, safety checks, and what to think about before you hit the highway on your next road trip when your furry co-pilot is tagging along for the ride.
Before you go:
- If you know your destination, research vet hospitals before hand, so you'll know where to head in an emergency.
- Pack up your pet first aid kit, along with plenty of food, collapsible water bowls, medicines, and toys they might need in an easily accessible tote or travel bag.
- Make sure your pet's i.d. tags are up to date with current phone numbers.
- Maximize your time by scouting out your destination's pet-friendly hotels, parks, and beaches, so you're not roaming around looking for them.
- Consider prepping a travel litter box, since kitties are fussy travelers. Stress can do numbers on their digestive systems.
Check out the rest of my tips when you
- Make sure your car seat or travel crate fits in your car, and check the straps to make sure they are secure before heading out.
- My grandmother always warned me to have extra warm blankets, coats, and water if you are heading up to the mountains or cold areas, so I'll pass the same advice on to you!
- Pack a flashlight for night-time walks and potty breaks.
Along the way:
- Give your pets water at the beginning of your rest breaks, not at the end. Full tummies and lots of movement could make for a very disturbing ride . . . if you know what I mean!
- This goes without saying, but never leave your pet unattended in the car – especially in extreme temps.
- Stop every two to three hours for a rest and stretch break. Rest stops usually provide a good place to fetch a toy and get out some pent up energy, or just go for a nice walk . . . on a leash of course.
Hopefully these tips can make your road trip safe and comfy for everyone involved. Share your before travel to-do lists in the comments below!