My Car Quest

April 18, 2024

Dog Friendly Road Tripping

Puppy getaways were one of the biggest trends in travel. Dog-friendly travel company, PetsPyjamas, reports that there has been an 80% increase in bookings with pups for travel in 2022, while Hilton Hotels cites that “pet-friendly” is the third most commonly used filter on their booking site. If you are traveling with your two-footed and four-pawed family members, then road trips are a great way to keep it sustainable, practical and easy. Keep an eye out for the following trends when you’re in the planning stage.

Keeping it On the Road

Many families are choosing road trips because of the ease and comfort of having their pet in the car with them. Today, airlines across the globe are being more permissive with the number of dogs allowed on cabins. Moreover, countries like Australia, known for their tough pet travel policies, are finally allowing pets in cabins. However, if you have more than one dog, then a road trip may be a better choice. You can up the comfort factor by choosing a spacious car. Road trips also enable you to significantly reduce your carbon footprint, especially if you take a hybrid or electric car.

Keeping Your Pup Comfortable

If in the past, it was advised to keep dogs in crates during travel, today, there are many more comfortable, space-saving ways of traveling with Fido in the car. Instead of a crate, a vehicle harness is a better option, as it ensures any tug occurs on the back of the harness, keeping your dog’s head and limbs secure. Trending harnesses have features like breathable mesh chests (to keep your pooch cool), soft sponge padding, and crash-tested safety features. Thus far, the Center for Pet Safety has approved three safety harnesses for dogs: Sleepypod Clickit Sport, Sleepypod Clickit Terrain, and the Rocketeer Pack by ZuGoPet.

Pet-Friendly Living

Hotels and resorts are increasingly catering for pets, offering their humans ground-floor accommodations with gardens. If you’re on a road trip and you will be staying at hotels in specific destinations, look for those offering special treatment for dogs. Trends include the provision of dog bowls, beds, blankets, dog sitting and dog walking services, and even pampering treatments for your pooch at the spa. If you will be camping, check out places like 4 Paws Kingdom Campground & Dog Retreat in Rutherfordton, North Carolina. This resort is the first campground that is dedicated to humans and their dogs and it has a wide array of pet-focused amenities. There is a wide array of off-leash dog parks, a pond where you and your dogs can swim, and a puppy spa. Another excellent choice is Riverside Campground & Cabins in Big Sur, California. Here, you can access dog-friendly beaches in minutes. There is also a spacious campground nestled under giant redwoods that your dog will love playing in.

Active Road Trips

Pet lovers are seeking greater communication with nature and with their pets, with a plethora of recent studies indicating that time spent in nature and with pets significantly lowers stress hormone levels. Activity-based trips that involve trekking, swimming in natural bodies of water, and making one’s way through forests and other magical settings, are booming in popularity. Some of the best dog-friendly natural parks you might like to visit with your four-pawed friend are the Acadia National Park in Maine, Shenandoah National Park in Virginia, and White Sands National Park in New Mexico. Some parks allow dogs on kayaks in guided trips on the water, while others have more stringent rules regarding dogs in the water.

Pet travel is bigger than ever and for many families, a road trip is undoubtedly the most comfortable way to travel with canine companions. Top trends in this type of travel include the use of tested safety harnesses for dogs. Pet pampering resorts, dog-friendly campsites, and active, nature-based road trips are also high up on pet owners’ lists.


Photo by Marieke Koenders on Unsplash.

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