Are you thinking about RVing with Dogs?
You have come to the right place. A lot of pet owners find it had to travel with their pets which should not be the case.
There is a lot of things we do not consider before going on an RV road trip with our favorite canine buddy. It is important to have a checklist that helps you keep track of what is happening before, during, and after the trip. This ensures our dogs are safe and comfortable on this RV wanderlust venture. Here is a simple guide on how to RV with your dog in style.
What you need to know before RVing with your dog
For how long do you plan on going away? If it is only for a couple of months before coming back home, then you are a temporary RV traveler. You only need to carry enough supplies to last your travel days.
We managed to make an RV checklist for you and your furry friend. Here is everything you need to know about RVing with Dogs as a part-time or full-time traveler.
1) Adhere to Road Rules
Road rules apply to everyone in the RV including Bingo at the back. There should be minimal movements of pets while the RV is moving. Accidents can happen in seconds and the last thing you want is your Chihuahua to be a casualty. It is better to keep them confined at a particular spot while driving the RV.
If your dog is an energetic breed, a dog crate is a great way to keep them in one place. Ensure you place the crate where they will have a great view of you. Some dogs can grow very anxious when they feel alone in a new environment.
2) Carry a Bag for Your Dog
Dogs need a luggage bag like their favorite humans. In this bag will be all the necessary items that will make your pooch’s RV trip comfortable and fun.
Have a bag that will contain all your dog’s favorite toys. You do not want to leave his favorite squeaky toy behind especially on days you will leave him in the RV alone. A bag of assorted canine toys helps keep interesting while RVing with your dog.
You also need a bag for medication and emergency supplies. Is your dog taking medication for an underlying ailment? Ensure you continue the dosage even while out enjoying an adventure with your dog. Do not forget his pet supplements if he has any.
Then there is the cleanup bag. You will need an ample supply of poop bags while on an RV trip with your dog. In the same bag goes his beddings, favorite towel, dog shampoo, and his toothbrush. A small grooming kit is important as well.
If you can pack all these items in one bag, the better! RVing with your dog is all about traveling light while enjoying your new mobile home.
3) Always have your pet’s information
Never forget your dog can wander off anytime while out on an RV trip. It is important that you have all the necessary documents to help find or identify him.
Get your dog’s vaccine information up to date. Ensure you keep a record of all the shots he has received since he was a puppy. There are RV grounds that do not allow pets in without a medical record.
Take lots of photos of your dog. Keep some on your phone for memories and ensure you print out a couple. Always keep the printed photos in a safe envelope. In case your dog gets a tad too adventurous, the photos can help find him faster.
Once you find where Charlie was hiding, you will need a document to prove that he is yours. Since your pup is the cutest in the world, there is nothing stopping a total stranger from claiming he is theirs. Proof of ownership document helps clear all doubts about who owns Charlie.
Do not forget to get your pooch a name tag. On this tag, you will write his name and your contact details. In case he wanders off to the wrong RV, a good Samaritan can call and bring him back to you.
4) Access to the RV
Your dog will need easy access to the RV while out camping. Some dogs do not mind bolting up a few flights of stairs into the RV. Other dogs may need a wider entrance so they can walk in side by side with their favorite human.
Make it possible for your dog to access the RV even when you are away. You may also want to restrict access to some parts of the RV. This includes the indoor store where you keep a bag of his favorite doggy treats.
5) Make the RV comfortable for your dog
Before you even rev the RV engine, you have to be sure that Charlie is a team player. He may love to accompany you wherever you go as long as you go back to his beloved stationary home. Since you are packing your entire life into a 32 or 45 feet long RV, you will need a sit down with your dog.
RVing with dogs is successful if our furry friends buy into the idea early enough. Once you bring your first RV back home, let your army of furry friends explore it. Within a few days, they will start marking their spots in the RV.
Bring out the van keys and take the RV for a spin together. Do this until your dogs are comfortable with a moving house. If your dog always co-drives with you, then an RV is just another vehicle he can share with his beloved human.
Bring on board your dog’s favorite sleeping rug or basket. Place it where he marked his territory and you remain best friends. Do not forget to carry a non-spill drinking bowl to keep your dog quenched while on the road. You also need to decide on a diet for him. Since you have no guarantee of malls or tuck shops while out RVing with dogs, it is best to stock up on canned pet food.
We all crave the moments we pack our bags and get on the road. Sometimes we even let our furry friends tag along to make the trip merrier. A few days into the drive and we realize RVing with Dogs can be a hassle.
There is also the option of a permanent RV traveler. This is the type of traveler who sells their home and packs the rest of their years into a 30-foot-long travel van. If this is you, you will need the right tips on how to transition from a modern house to a travel RV van.
You also need to know how to shop for an RV van that suits you. if you are a temporary traveler, then you can make do with a used RV van. Permanent travelers will need a new motorhome or a used one with minimal mileage.
6) Bond over pit stops
The whole point of RVing with dogs is to frequently stop and smell the fresh air. Driving on end and only stopping to sleep kills the fun of living in a caravan. Make it a habit to stop and rest while on your RV trip.
Small stops allow your dog to dash out and handle his business. This is also the best time to clean the RV and freshen up yourself. You also get time to do your routine walks while exploring the new environment.
Stop at RV camping grounds to bond with other wanderlust humans over a cup of coffee. This is also a great time to socialize your dog to new people while on the road. Also, make it a habit to stop regularly when out in the wild. You could make it a thing to stop and enjoy sunsets with your pooch. This helps both of you reboot and look forward to the remaining part of the journey.
7) Leaving Bingo Behind
We do not mean driving off while he takes a leak in a nearby bush. There are days you want to explore the wild alone or spend quality time with your spouse. Charlie will not mind taking the day off as long as you come back to him sooner.
Never leave your dog behind for too long. It is possible for him to develop pet anxiety which can result in destructive behavior. If you are in a pet-friendly RV camping ground, leave your dog with someone you know and trust. Otherwise, it is best to let him tag to your solo trips as long as he remains quiet.
You also have to ensure that your dog will be comfortable when left alone. Check the weather for the day and see how the temperatures are going to be. You might want to turn on the AC on hot days or keep the RV warm in cold days.
Ensure you leave food and drinking water behind for your dog. An extra bowl with his favorite doggy treats can help him kill time before you come back. If your dog loves it when the radio is on, do not deny him the luxury. But come back sooner before your RV battery runs flat.
8) If possible, do not install a carpet
Cleaning your RV can be a pain if you have a carpet installed. It means spending countless hours vacuuming dog hair off the carpet. God forbid if you come home and find urine spots all over your lush carpet. It means spending another hour scrubbing and trying to get rid of the odor. If you can avoid an RV carpet all together.
What if a carpet is what you need to make your RV life cozier? No problem, you just need to find a pet-friendly carpet for your RV. Consider buying a stain resistant carpet which will make it easy to keep your RV clean. Polypropylene carpets are stain-resistant and great for RVs.
You may also go with a Nylon carpet for your RV. Nylon carpets are abrasion and spill resistant. They are easy to clean or maintain while RVing with your dog. One last choice of RV carpet is acrylic or man-made wool carpet. It is dirt and static resistant. Acrylic carpet comes in various colors and is great for high traffic area.
9) Exercising is Important
Making time to exercise while RVing with a dog is important. Driving for hours becomes boring and everyone on-board starts to get cranky. Find time to exercise your dogs during the pit stops you make. It could be as simple as a routine evening walk or a game of Frisbee.
Stop by lakes or rivers to fish, swim, or bask. Go on a hike with your dog and explore new trails. Whatever you do, ensure both you and your dog are getting enough exercise each day. It helps stretch the muscles, keep the blood flowing, and maintain your wanderlust spirits.
10) Hunt for a New Vet
It is possible that your pup may get sick while on the RV. You should always keep track of vet clinics within the area you are traveling through. You can be lucky and find a friendly vet in one of the RV caravans. If not, then ask for contacts to the nearest vet clinics in the area.
RVing with dogs is a fun and challenging quest to embark on. The above tips should help you prepare for your first RVing trip with your favorite furry friend. Do you have more tips on RVing with your dog? Comment below and let us know.