Hi, Friends! Don’t look so confused. You know I would never drive across the country, and I don’t have a dog. Since we are in France this week, I thought it would be the perfect time to host a guest-blogger on TwentyFivePlusFive. The following is a post written by Kelsey from AdventuringKelsey. Kelsey is an elementary school teacher (like me!) and started her blogging journey in April 2018 (like me!). So, naturally, I think she is pretty awesome. I hope you enjoy her advice, energy, and writing style as much as I do! xo Laura
In December of 2017 I finally took the leap and became a dog mom. Overall, it has been a very amusing, messy, and humbling experience. The biggest obstacle has been my need for travel. I never want to leave my pup behind, especially if I don’t need to. This summer, I took my first road trip with her. It was an experience for both of us, but if I do say so myself, we rocked it. Here are three tips I have for you when traveling with your fur baby.
- Water, water, water! – Notice how you start to get thirsty an hour or so into your drive? (If not sooner, like me.) Safe to say your pup is feeling the same way. Bowls can get messy in the car so I knew I didn’t want to try that. I simply just took a tumbler cup with a lid, filled it with water, and every so often took the lid off to allow my pup to get a quick drink. This kept her hydrated, without drowning my car in water. It’s also super convenient as you can just keep it in a cup holder right next to you!
- Keep them comfortable. – For a dog, being in the car for long periods of time can be very overwhelming. Keep in mind they don’t necessarily know that they are going somewhere fun, so this can be a mentally exhausting process for them. Even if they do well in cars like my girl does, you still want them as comfortable as possible. Choose a couple of their favorite things to keep around them. For me, I laid out her favorite blanket on the seat, and put a bone in reach, too. She didn’t grab for the bone too often, but when she did it was to snuggle up with it. The blanket and bone made her feel a bit more safe and at home.
- Bathroom Breaks – When traveling with a travel partner, bathroom breaks are easy. Someone stays with the dog while the other runs in quick. But what about when you’re traveling alone like I was? In the summer heat this can become pretty stressful for your pup and for you. There are some rest stops that will allow dogs to come in the facility, but not many. (To see if you’ll come across one on your trip simply Google “dog friendly rest stops”.) For me, there weren’t any on my route so I needed to be a bit more strategic. When I knew we were going to be coming up on a stop that we needed, I would blast the air conditioning to really cool the car down. The second we parked, I cracked the windows a tad to keep the air flow, jumped out of the car and ran in to use the restroom myself, first. I made sure I was quick and even settled for using hand sanitizer once getting back to my car instead of washing my hands in the facility. Every time I got back to my car, it was still cool (thank goodness). I then took the pup out second and allowed her to run around for a bit to use up some energy. By taking your pup out after you use the restroom, you’re allowing them to stay in the cooler air longer, and in the summer that is so important.