Camping with Pets in a Travel Trailer
Modify Your Trip Itinerary to Include Your Pets
One of your first steps should be to revise your travel itinerary to leave plenty of room to include your pets. First-time travelers make the mistake of assuming their plans will not be affected by their pets. You can save yourself the headache by making your pet a major focal point of your overall plans.
For instance, you should locate the pet-friendly restaurants, campgrounds, RV parks and other activities that will cater to your entire family (barks and meows included). With a little research and patience, you can make all the necessary updates and finalize your pet-friendly trip itinerary.
Leave Time for Unplanned, Frequent Stops for Breaks and Walks
There are quite a few things that you can plan when taking a trip to enjoy RV travel with pets. However, always remember to leave time in your travel plans for the unexpected needs that will arise. For example, your pet may need to take more bathroom breaks than you originally expected.
In addition, he or she may be uncomfortable in the vehicle and need to have frequent walks in the park or breaks to stretch their legs. Unless you want to become irritated and aggravated by your companion on the road, make sure that you cater to their unexpected needs along the way. These breaks will also give you a chance to relax and relieve yourself of the stress that typically comes with a lengthy road trip.
Prepare Your Pet-Friendly Gear in Advance
In addition to your luggage and personal items, you need to prepare pet-friendly gear and equipment to bring along with you. For instance, you should keep a pet temperature monitor for RVs to make sure you can keep your pet healthy throughout the trip. It is also helpful to remember any medications, vitamins or supplements. Pack the food, treats, water bowls and drinking water that will help if your pet suffers an upset stomach on the road.
Keep in mind that dog owners need to pack a few more items than cat owners for RV travel with pets. For example, a dog owner will need to bring a leash, waste bags, and even proof of vaccinations to meet the criteria enforced by certain hotels, campgrounds and dog parks. Regardless of the type of pet, you should also make sure they have a current identification tag with your current contact information just in case you two are separated.
Buckle Up for Pet Safety
You should always have your pets traveling with you in the vehicle. A common misconception – especially among first-time RV trip travelers- is that pets can stay inside the camper. In addition to the temperature issues that your pet can experience in a camper, there is also the lack of support and restraint to consider. What would happen if you get in an accident on the road?
It is highly recommended for your pet to be secured in a crash-tested carrier or pet-friendly seat belt harness. Keeping the pet secured with this type of gear will also prevent them from distracting the person behind the wheel. As the driver of a several ton vehicle, you cannot afford to take your eyes off the road for anything – especially a dog that wants to play or a cat that wants to cuddle.
Make sure that you conduct a few “test drives” with the safety equipment before hitting the road.
These checks will help you to ensure your pet is comfortable yet safe while on the road. It will also give your pet a chance to get used to the harness before they are restrained by it for several hours at a time.
Be Prepared for All Weather Conditions
Another RV pet safety tip for road trips and overall travel is to consider all applicable weather conditions. You must keep your eye on the weather forecasts before and even during your trip. While researching the campgrounds and RV parks that you will visit, check to see where the storm shelters are located.
Make evacuation plans and investigate safety routes that you can take in the event of an emergency to keep yourself and your pets safe. Remember that a pet temperature monitor for RVs is a solid investment, because this wireless device allows you to keep an eye on the vehicle’s temperature remotely.
When traveling during the spring and summer months, keep an eye on the temperature spikes as well. It is easy to feel comfortable with cloudy and sunny forecasts without examining the temperatures (highs and lows) that each day will experience. Even if the air conditioning system in your RV is first-class, you should never put too much trust in it – especially when you consider the abundance of scenarios in which the AC system can fail.
In addition to a pet temperature monitor for RVs, you should consider setting the generator in your RV to start automatically during an emergency. This modification allows the AC system to run even when your RV does not have any electricity flowing into it.
Keep Good Notes to Update Plans for Future Trips
There are not very many experiences in life that can match the joy of a successful RV road trip. RV travel with pets may seem like a daunting task that you will only want to endure once and never again. However, with advance preparation and detailed planning, your entire family will enjoy the experience and eagerly anticipate the next trip.
With that in mind, take great notes during each stage of your trip regarding what you can do differently the next time around. This is a great tip to follow for first-time trip owners that may find creative and clever ways to do things more efficiently for their next trips.
Taking good notes will also lighten the burdensome load of planning for RV travel with pets for the future.