Home Dogs Are You Planning Road Trip With Dog: 18 Practical Tips

Are You Planning Road Trip With Dog: 18 Practical Tips

by Pawsome Tips
Planning road trip with dog

Ready to hit the road with your furry friend? Traveling with a dog can be loads of fun – and while there’s often more prep involved than simply grabbing your keys and heading out, it doesn’t have to be intimidating. While we all hope for smooth driving, having a few tips up your sleeve will help you enjoy worry-free travel with your pup.

So, Are you planning road trip with dog? Read on for our top 18 practical tips. Get ready – adventure awaits!

Things to Consider when Planning Road Trip with Dog

A road trip with your furry best friend can be an exciting and unforgettable experience – if you plan it right. Make sure to consider the essentials:

1. Choosing the Right Vehicle

Different breeds have different requirements and comfort levels when it comes to traveling. Large dogs may need more legroom, or maybe they just need something like a dog hammock that straps around the seat and provides additional support while keeping them in one place.

Make sure to have the right vehicle for their size and needs. If you’re road-tripping with multiple pets, look into buying a bigger car or an SUV so all your furry family members can get in on the action!

2. Obtaining Necessary Veterinary Documents

Before the fun begins, make sure you have all of your furry friend’s necessary veterinary documents and that they’ve had their regular health check-ups.

Without these steps taken care of ahead of time, you could find yourself stranded away from home instead of at the beach or campground as planned. So take the time now to make sure all your canine companion’s needs are met; it may take some effort in advance but will likely save you plenty of anxiety.

3. Training and Conditioning Your Dog

If you’re planning a road trip with your beloved pooch, you might be wondering how to get them prepared. Proper training and conditioning are essential for getting your pup road-ready!

Traveling with your dog and the dog enjoying the ride in a car
Image credit: Jaromir Chalabala / Shutterstock
  • Start by familiarizing them with the car.
  • Take short trips to the park or around town; let them explore and become comfortable being in the car.
  • As these road trips slowly become longer, bring some of their favorite treats or toys as rewards.
  • Modern convenience items like a booster seat or travel crate can keep both of you safe and secure in the car during the entire road trip.
  • While road trips are a great way to bond with your pup, remember that safety always comes first.

4. Packing Essentials for Your Dog

Pack plenty of their favorite foods and water in order to keep hungry bellies full during your travels. Don’t forget bowls and a leash too as these are essential for feeding and taking walks along the way.

Also, don’t forget any medications or extra toys that may provide comfort if your pup becomes anxious or stressed out at any point.

Having everything you need for your road trip with your dog will ensure a stress-free “pawesome” event!

5. Regular Breaks for Potty and Exercise

Long road trips with your dog can be a blast, but the truth is that they can be quite tiring. To make sure you and your pup are both feeling good, remember to take regular breaks for potty, stretching, and exercise – not just for Fido, but for yourself too!

Stretching every hour or so can help prevent muscle stiffness, and a little outdoor playtime will ensure that everyone stays energized and happy.

Taking breaks for them to do their business, move around, and get some exercise will significantly reduce potential risks to their health. Plus it will give you all a chance to get reacquainted with nature!

6. Keeping the Car Comfortable for Your Dog

dog feeling comfortable in the car
Image credit: New Africa / Shutterstock

To ensure that both you and your pup have a pleasant road trip, it’s important to keep the temperature well-regulated inside the car. Keeping cool air circulating will not only make the ride more comfortable but can also prevent putting either of you at risk of overheating.

Having the windows open slightly while driving is one easy way to keep the car ventilated and maintain an optimal temperature inside the car – ensuring that you and your beloved pet have an enjoyable road trip experience.

7. Securing Your Dog in the Car

The best way to secure your dog in the car is to either use a sturdy and comfortable harness or crate whenever they are in the vehicle with you.

Not only will this provide them with a safe place while they are along for the ride, but it could also help prevent an accident if your pup decides to move around during the journey. Investing in something like this can really help when it comes to keeping all passengers safe!

8. Sticking to a Routine

Sticking to a routine for feeding and potty breaks can help to ensure that Fido is fed, exercised, and gets regular opportunities to take care of necessary business along the way.

A road trip is a fun experience for everyone with the added bonus of being good for your pet’s physical health and emotional well-being. It pays to make sure you’ve got everything prepared ahead of time so that you’ll have an enjoyable adventure with your four-legged companion!

9. Being Aware of Laws and Regulations

Before you start your road trip, make sure to double-check the laws and regulations regarding pet ownership in each state you’ll be visiting.

Local regulations governing the type of pets, where they are allowed, or if any vaccinations or permits are required vary from state to state. These laws and regulations are in place for a reason, so be aware of them when traveling with your pet – especially if you want to avoid any fines or pointed questions from animal control officers!

10. Knowing What to Do in Case of Emergency

It’s important to make sure that you’re prepared in case of an emergency. The most effective way to prepare is by learning basic first aid ahead of time and having the items you need readily available, like a cell phone and any medical supplies that might be necessary.

It’s also important to have a list of nearby animal hospitals – if something does happen, you’ll want somewhere close that can take care of your pup right away. Being ready for any potential issue that may arise will help make trips with Fido safe and enjoyable!

11. Keeping Your Dog Safe in Case of Accidents or Breakdowns

Accidents and breakdowns can happen at any time, so you should always be prepared. Have a road safety kit stored in your car that includes things like first aid items, medical records, water, food, and an emergency phone number for veterinary care.

Make sure that you have an extra leash and collar, as well as blankets and toys in case you need to stay somewhere overnight.

It’s also a good idea to install a microchip in your pet ahead of time. Taking these steps will help ensure that if anything happens while you’re out with Fido, you will be fully prepared to keep them safe!

12. Finding Dog-Friendly Destinations

Find a dog-friendly destination when planning a road trip with your dog(s).
Image credit: dezy / Shutterstock

While the journey itself can be fun and exciting, the key is making sure you find dog-friendly destinations along the way. From parks to restaurants, pet stores, and doggy daycare centers, you’ll certainly have no shortage of fun activities to plan.

To make sure that you don’t miss a single one, it’s best to check online resources or apps that are tailored to provide canine-approved vacation spots so that you and your pup can explore in comfort and safety.

13. Making the Most of Your Time on the Road

Taking a road trip with your dog can be an amazing opportunity to explore and bond. Making the most of that adventure doesn’t have to be difficult – just make sure you take some time to frolic along the roadside and find areas where your four-legged friend can stretch his or her legs out.

If they get too much sun, cool them off with a refreshing dip in a lake or nearby beach! As long as you plan ahead and bring enough food, snacks, and water, you’ll have plenty of quality moments together.

Don’t forget the sunscreen if you’re headed for a sunny destination!

14. Preparing for Any Weather condition

Whether you’re road-tripping with your dog or just taking a hike near home, having the right gear is half the battle when it comes to preparing for any weather condition.

Put together an emergency kit with supplies like first-aid items in case of any unfortunate events while spending time outdoors.

Stay informed if there is a surprise storm rolling through, and be prepared to find shelter quickly and safely during windy weather or get off the road if necessary.

15. Planning for Overnight Stays

Of course, our precious pooches need special consideration when it comes to overnight stays on the road.

First things first, properly secure pet-friendly accommodations before booking that road trip and make sure to bring all the necessary items like food, treats, and a crate or travel bed to ensure your pup enjoys their stay as much as you do. When packing items like medicine or paperwork related to the dog (like vaccination records), don’t forget those either!

Camping can be a great idea rather than booking a hotel room. Planning ahead helps to keep the road trip stress-free so everyone in the car, including your furry family member, can safely enjoy each leg of the journey.

16. Managing your Dog’s diet on the Road

On the road, it’s important that your pup is getting all the nutrients they need. Start by packing a variety of healthy snacks and treats, think veggies like carrots, fruit like apples, and protein-rich snacks such as jerky.

Make sure there are plenty of pet-safe drinking water options along your route for quick and easy hydration on the go.

Also, consider bringing special dietary food if your pup has any special needs. Sticking to their regular eating routine as much as possible can help ease their transition from one place to another and keep them happy and healthy no matter where the road may take you!

17. Keeping your dog entertained

Provide interactive toys like puzzles and treat balls that will give them hours of entertainment without leaving the house. No matter what you do, motivating your pup with treats and verbal praise will always help make it a good experience.

18. Importance of Proper Identification

Going on road trips with a dog can be stressful but having proper identification is the surest way to avoid unnecessary hassle.

dog identification tag
Image credit: Annette Shaff / Shutterstock

Having a collar and tag with your pup’s name, address, and contact info is one of the best ways to ensure their safe return if they get lost along the journey. It also prevents any unlawful charges from being made at hotels or campsites since most require dogs to be identified before allowing them onto the premises.

Proper identification not only helps protect your pet but gives you peace of mind in knowing that you have taken all necessary steps for your road trip to go smoothly.


If you’re planning a road trip with your dog, congratulations! You and your furry friend are in for a lot of fun. But before you hit the open road, there are a few things you’ll need to take care of to make sure everything goes smoothly. In this blog post, we’ve shared 18 tips to help you plan the perfect road trip with your dog. So whether this is your first time hitting the highway with a man’s best friend or you’re a seasoned pro, be sure to check out our tips before setting off on your adventure. And if you have any additional advice to share, please let us know in the comments below!


Are dogs OK with road trips?

Road trips with your canine companion can be an enjoyable experience! Dogs can feel secure and relaxed when they are traveling in a familiar vehicle, as long as they have sufficient space to move around. Make sure they have access to food and water at all times and provide regular breaks where your pup can stretch their legs. With the right planning ahead of time, you and your pup can enjoy a fun road trip together!

Are long car rides stressful for dogs?

Long car rides can cause anxiety in dogs, but with the right preparation and accommodations, it doesn’t have to be a stressful experience. Take frequent breaks during the journey to give your pup some time to stretch their legs and relieve any built-up stress. Consider bringing along a blanket or favorite toy to provide comfort. Additionally, plan ahead for adequate ventilation and access to food and water throughout the ride. That way you can both have an enjoyable road trip!

How do I keep my dog calm in the car?

Keeping your pup calm in the car can take some preparation and planning. If possible, get them accustomed to the car before long trips by taking short rides around town. If your pup gets anxious during rides, try playing calming music or providing treats or toys as a distraction. Additionally, make sure you provide regular breaks for them to stretch their legs and use the restroom. With this extra preparation, your dog can stay calm on even the longest of car rides!

How to travel with a dog who gets car sick (motion sickness)?

Traveling with a dog who gets car sick can be challenging, but it doesn’t have to be impossible! Consider giving your pup medication such as Dramamine before trips, and feed them light meals before leaving. Make sure to take frequent breaks during the trip, and keep windows open to provide adequate ventilation. Additionally, try playing calming music or providing treats or toys as a distraction. With these accommodations, your pup can still enjoy the journey!

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