Travel Trailering With Your Dog, part 1
Back in September, Kersey, Terry and I had the awesome experience of going on a 3,000 plus trip through Nebraska, South Dakota, North Dakota, Montana, Wyoming and then back to Colorado. This article talks about the preparation for, challenges of and enjoyment of travel trailering with a dog.
Packing for Kersey was actually easier than packing for me. For myself, I had to consider what we were going to be doing and whether the weather would be hot or cold weather. For Kersey, she wore the same coat throughout the whole trip.
For food, we just scooped out enough for the trip into a plastic box and put that box in the rear of the truck. That way she couldn’t access it when we left her in the truck or travel trailer by herself. Two bowls for the travel trailer and one bowl (with a jug of water) for the truck.
Kersey is micro-chipped and has an ID tag, but we also had a picture of her on our phone in case she ever got lost. We included a leash, some toys, a brush, poop bags and a roll out bed to define where we wanted her to park herself either in the travel trailer or outside. In retrospect, a zip line would have been useful but instead we had an extra leash and attached her to picnic tables, which worked out fine. Since first aid supplies are pretty generic, we just checked to make sure we were well stocked.
Prior to the trip, we started feeding Kersey her meals in the travel trailer. Gradually we started leaving her alone in the travel trailer (after her meal) for longer and longer periods of time.
Of particular concern to us about traveling with Kersey is that she gets carsick. Kersey’s veterinarian gave us some Acepromazine that we brought with us, but were reluctant to use because it would also make her drowsy. When she slept on the backseat, she seemed fine. However, when she sat up she’d start the panting and drooling. Eventually she discovered the very best place to ride was on the FLOOR of the backseat.
Which happens more frequently: the need to fill up the gas tank of a truck or the need to water, toilet or walk your dog? Fortunately, with Kersey the timing worked out perfectly.
When we’d stop to eat or take in a tourist attraction, we parked in a shady spot or put Kersey in the travel trailer with the blinds down and with water, of course. If the weather had been hotter, we could have used a fan to keep her cool. If she’d been at all stressed by the experience, we could have played some soothing music. She showed no stress (beyond the occasional carsickness) and wagged her tail happily as she got in and out of both the truck and travel trailer.