Have to do a road trip any tips?

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I know I'm cute- rub my belly!
Barked: Fri Jul 27, '12 10:49am PST 
I am moving and have to drive from Texas to California and need to bring my dog along with me. She is pretty relaxed in the car but any suggestions on how often to stop for her how to make her feel more comfortable. Any national hotel chains to avoid or to look for. I am just looking for any tips that can be provided that could be useful from anyone who has done a long distance trip like this before.
Ava & Nix

Suburban Farm- Dogs
Barked: Fri Jul 27, '12 7:07pm PST 
We took a cross country 9-day-one-way-Washington-to-Virginia road trip a little over 2 years ago, and then only a Virginia-to-Tennessee-and-back trip, maybe 2 months ago.

During the trip to Tennessee I needed to stop often--every couple of hours or sometimes even ever hour, because recently I've developed some problem with my right leg where it starts painfully cramping up when I've been sitting for too long. That worked out nicely for the dogs, but honestly they probably did not need to stop as often as I did. laugh out loud

Back when we took our cross-country trip we stopped only maybe 3 or 4 times a day as I remember--Not including stopping to sleep or the times we stopped to camp for a couple days at Yellowstone, then again at the Badlands. That was before my leg issue started, and back then we only had Ava. Plus, we were driving in my big old van where Ava had enough room to get up and walk around a bit if she wanted to. My van doesn't have middle seats, so there's this wonderful big empty space between the back fold-out bed and the driver's and passenger seats. Mostly she stayed under the bed. smile We'd also take her on mini-walks at every rest stop, but we didn't stop any more often than we humans needed to (I should note that if we were driving a car instead of a big hulking van we would have stopped more often than that, since she wouldn't have had the option of stretching her legs in a little car).

She ate breakfast and dinner when we did, there was a cup that we kept in a cupholder full of water at all times.. not enough to spill but enough for her to get a good drink, and I'd refill it as often as I needed to.

I couldn't offer any advice about hotels, as we slept in my van every night, either at empty hotel parking lots or rest stops. Just make sure to pack lots of water--we bought 2 big 24-packs of bottled water from Costco, which was honestly a lot more than we needed even for a 9 day trip, but that's ok because we didn't know how much we'd be using and it's good to be prepared. smile

Edited by author Fri Jul 27, '12 7:14pm PST


I know I'm cute- rub my belly!
Barked: Fri Jul 27, '12 11:04pm PST 
Ya if I had an SUV or Van I would totally just camp it but I have a small 2 door car and am 6 foot myself thats not feasible. I will definitely keep a bowl of water in the car and feed her a light meal in the mornings. I know along the highway to California there are plenty of dog areas at rest stops. The more concerning part to me may be the second part of my trip from California to South Dakota as I don't know that path or highway and what is along it for stops and such.


Mischief is my- middle name
Barked: Sat Jul 28, '12 5:02pm PST 
You need to read the fine print on "pet-friendly" hotels. Many have additional per stay or per night fees, and/or weight limits.

I've stayed mostly at LaQuinta when road tripping with Ace. They're not posh, but have never charged an extra fee. One had a sign on the front desk specifying a weight limit, and I had Ace there with me (clearly over the limit) and the clerk waved it off.

I've driven as much as 700 miles in a single day with her, but my preference would be no more than 500-600 maximum.

Ace tends toward a little stomach trouble, so I gave her Dramamine at first. Stopped every 2-3 hours for water and to stretch the legs a little. Would normally feed her twice a day, but went to night-time only feedings while we were on the road - No desire to smell kibble vomit for 500 miles. Generally ate fast food, and she'd be treated with a nibble of cheeseburger or a french fry or two to get her through the day.

Depending on the weather, I drove with the window cracked and/or sunroof open as much as I could. Seemed better for her with fresh air.

I also put my back seat down, so she had a nice flat surface to lay on, rather than trying to get comfortable on a seat that doesn't really "fit" her.

On the whole, she was a real trooper, and great to travel with. Never complained about my radio/music choices or complained if I got a little lost laugh out loud

Barked: Sat Jul 28, '12 6:22pm PST 
We just recently drove from Ks to Wa and back a little over a week ago. All the Holiday in Express we stayed in were dog friendly and clean. We also stayed at the La Quinta inn and the Red Lion hotel. All the hotels we stayed in charged a $10 pet deposit. We did break often but when you have 2 young kids, 3 dogs, and two adults crammed into a mini van you really need it. Lol. I suggest taking your dog on trips around your area before hand to find out if he has motion sickness first and you can pick up stuff for dogs at some pet stores or your vet to help with that. We had to do that for our mini Aussie but the other two dogs were fine. I also made sure to only feed them in the evening when we stopped for the night and not right before we got on the road so they wouldn't get sick. We also carried a collapsible water bowl and a gallon of water with us to give them whenever we stopped for breaks.

I know I'm cute- rub my belly!
Barked: Sun Jul 29, '12 10:28am PST 
The weight limit thing shouldn't be an issue for Annie she is only 30 pounds. I was kind of expecting an extra charge so thats not a big deal.

Does any one have any suggestions on a seatbelt harness that would be suitable for such a couple 10 hour days?

It's all about- me.
Barked: Sun Jul 29, '12 9:02pm PST 
I haven't used a harness but use a heavy wire crate in the back of my Honda Element...decked out with deluxe bedding and large enough for a Standard Poodle to stretch out comfortably.

The back of my Element is such that the crate is up against the back of the driver's seat and front passengers seat...so I can see it easily...and for the air conditioner to blow to.

I've even had a medium crate in the passenger seat...door facing the driver's seat. As long as my dogs can see me see them...it's all good.

One thing that always bothered me is many hotel's put people with pets in smoking rooms. I don't smoke and my face swells up when exposed. I insist on a non- smoking room...period. I tell the hotel management that I have allergies...that's why I have a dog that doesn't shed...I refuse to be put in a smoking room where I could swell up and stop breathing.

I don't know if that's an issue for you...but Soft Coated Wheaten's don't really shed either. way to go

Do you even- lift?
Barked: Mon Jul 30, '12 12:29am PST 
Onyx and I have driven to and from the Los Angeles and Seattle areas several times together, the first time when he was eight weeks old. We generally just stop for gas and meals, and I let him out then. If he starts getting fussy we'll stop sooner, but for the most part stops don't have to revolve around him. Depends on the dog so just watch for signs of restlessness.

I do short walks whenever we stop, and I like to use a long line when possible so he can run around a bit more. Rest stops especially usually have enough space for running and exploring.

We usually stay at the same La Quinta Inn at our halfway point, and it's nice for the price. There's no pet fee and all the rooms allow up to two dogs of any size. I've seen places that charge $100 for a dog, so do make sure you check prices beforehand.

I recently purchased a Champion Seat Belt which he wore for our most recent drive down from WA (in addition to his pretty much daily car rides at home), and I really like it. The tether can be lengthened to allow some movement so the dog can stand up and move a couple feet, but keeps them restrained.

Edited by author Mon Jul 30, '12 12:37am PST

Ch.- Rushwind's- She Who- Speaks

Thats Ms. Bitch- to you.
Barked: Mon Jul 30, '12 4:05pm PST 
I drive a lot in one night to get to dog shows.

Drive until the dog starts to fuss, only then stop and let them out to pee.

NEVER wake a sleeping dog. If you have to pee, hold it. If you're hungry, it can wait until the dog wakes up.

Dogs have no sense of time so every time you stop they think they are "there" and the false alarms get old FAST.
Turner - Gone Too- Soon

Hi I'm Turner- Wanna Smell My- Butt?
Barked: Tue Jul 31, '12 8:42pm PST 
I would drive from Texas to Central PA 2x's a month. Turner was the best road dog ever! He had a bed in the back just for him. We would stop every couple of hours, weather needed or not. Most times just to stretch or take in the scenery. As far as hotels, we stayed at Red Roof. I had special fun toys for him when we would get to the hotel. I would stop around 6 or 7 pm, so we had time to walk, un-wind, play, walk again and then settle in. He would have a full dinner and one last walk before bed. In the morning I never rushed. Took him for a walk, got something to eat, walk again and then we hit the road. I always brought my own water, just because that is how I am. I miss traveling with him as I did it so often. We had great concerts while driving the miles and he was always a good listener! Have a safe trip. way to go
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