Traveling with a {small} dog

I was a little nervous about taking Daisy to North Carolina with us. The longest car ride she had been on up to that point had been around 1 hour, and it was going to be at least 8 hours to NC (it ended up being around 9). 

 She did better than we could have ever imagined! I’m looking forward to her tagging along on more family vacations, since, after all, we do consider our little fur baby part of the family.

Here’s what I learned about traveling with a small dog.

First, we made sure that she would be comfortable and feel safe. Daisy sleeps in a kennel every night at home, so we made sure to bring it. When she feels scared or overwhelmed, many times she goes and relaxes in her kennel. We figured that having it accessible to her on the drive would help if she felt anxious or stressed. It also helped to have it to put her in when we needed to leave her behind at the cabin. We covered it with a blanket and she just took the opportunity to nap until we came back.

We also brought her bed. She loves sleeping in this bed while I work, so it is comforting to her. She spent a majority of the time cuddled up in it. 

I usually take a blanket when I travel, just because it makes me feel warm and cozy if the air conditioning gets too cold. This trip I brought along the blanket that Daisy and I cuddle up and watch TV in. I think it was very comforting to her when we got stuck in a wicked hail storm and had to pull over on the side of the road, along with most other cars on the expressway.  She jumped onto my lap and dug her way under the blanket.

We also made sure Daisy had water and food. I kind of overlooked this before we left. We stopped at the first rest stop and we had no way of giving her water. I put some water in a cup, but it just wasn’t easy for her to get to and we had to dump it out before we got back on the road. At the next rest stop, J came up with an idea. He bought ice cream that came in a plastic cup with a lid. We enjoyed the ice cream and then rinsed out the cup and used it to hold water.

 I could easily give Daisy a drink when she needed. I kept the container for future travels. You could just as easily buy a travel bowl for your dog. I also used the top part as a little bowl so she could have a snack when we stopped.

Speaking of water… make sure you don’t give your dog too much to drink if you aren’t planning on stopping. Daisy has a tendency to drink until the bowl is empty. The only problem is her bladder is smaller than the bowl. Sometimes she even throws up the extra water. We also made a few extra stops than we would have if it were just J and I.

I think this helped give a little break and “reset” her for the next couple of hours. She didn’t complain or whimper one bit on the drive. I truly think that these breaks helped put her at ease.

I absolutely loved having her with us on our vacation! It was fun to see her enjoy things like the mountain hike and the beach! I also think that the whole trip was sort of like a bonding experience for Daisy, J and I. I feel like she really learned that she can trust us and that we will take care of her. 

I wanted to take a picture of her every hour of the initial drive (I know, I’m weird), but I forgot to start until hour 3.

Wonder what adventures we will get into next??

Have you ever taken your pet on a vacation? Where did you go??

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