What Type of Dog Travels Best?
My husband is thinking about getting a dog to go with him over the road in his truck. We were wondering the best breed to get, (he is thinking of a larger shorthair dog). And what is the best age to get one to take over the road. He is out for usually 2-3 weeks at a time. We have a female pit bull at home now and 3 cats.
Going on road trips with my pal Buster is a great joy. He is always excited to get into the car, and he doesn't care where we go. He reminds me to pull over, get fresh air, and walk around now and then.
There is no doubt about it: dogs make great traveling companions. Plenty of truckers have figured this out. Many truckers are regular clients of mine.
Dogs generally are very adaptable. I am not aware of any one breed that travels better than the others. Over the years I have seen truckers happily accompanied by everything from Teacup Poodles to Great Danes. My travel companion, Buster, is a mutt.
Exercise common sense. If your husband spends a lot of time trucking in the sweltering desert avoid Bulldogs, Pugs, and other snub-nosed breeds that aren't heat tolerant. If he'll be driving in the arctic and he wants to ride with a Chihuahua he will need to pack some doggie sweaters.
Generally it is best to start driving with dogs when they are young. This helps to habituate them to the truck or car. However, even dogs that are adopted when mature generally learn to love life on the road.
Make sure you keep your new dog's vaccines and license current--this will help to prevent legal issues. And remember dogs that travel can be exposed to diseases and pests that may be uncommon at home. For instance, fleas and heartworm aren't common in Denver, but a dog that travels should receive high quality flea and heartworm prevention.
Finally, don't forget that roads, highways, and parking lots are full of potential hazards. Keep the dog on leash to help protect him from being hit by vehicles. And exercise diligence to make sure that the dog doesn't consume anything poisonous--last weekend I treated a trucker's dog after she drank antifreeze at a truck stop.