According to RSPCA, about 62% of Australian households own pets. There are an estimated more than 24 million pets in Australia. Dogs are the most common pet, with 38% of households owning a dog. There are estimated to be 4.8 million pet dogs in Australia; 20 dogs for every 100 people.
Dog owners often have a difficult decision to make when they travel, “what to do with their dogs?”. Options are expensive pet hotels which is often a germ bath; part time dog carers, and of course, bringing them along.
It is very sad to exclude your family member from your travels. There is extra work and attention required to bring your dogs with you but my experience says that it is well worth it. All you need is some careful planning. Here are some quick tips from my own experience:
- Make frequent stops on the road, not more than 2 hours in between breaks. This is also the maximum time suggested by Vic Roads for the reason of driving safe.
- Bring a few pieces of their favourite toys and their own bedding.
- Offer water at every stop or opportunity.
- You don’t sit next to your luggages, so do your dogs.
- Keep a running fan next to them.
- Plan ahead for pet friendly stops, including parks, restaurants with outdoor areas, beaches, and accommodations.
- Listen to them. When they look stressed, tired, not motivated, or have dry noses, it’s time to take a break and let them rest.
In my last trip, both we and our furry family members had so much joy using a cordless misting fan. It is battery operated and pumps water from a bucket or connects to a garden hose. We use it in the car (without misting), at the restaurant, campsite, basically at our every stop, Once the dogs have satisfied their thirst, we refill their large drinking bowl with water, then place the misting fan over it. This combo works like a dream.
Have you traveled with your pets? Please share your pictures and experience on our Facebook page.