If you are going to the Rapture today, have a great time…
Cici and I had fun driving around for two years… these are a few things that kept us safe and sane. With Memorial Day weekend coming up, these tips are helpful for holidays and can also be good for summer travel with your pooches.
l. Comfy and cozy and restrained. I had Cici all set up in the back seat with her own blankets and bedding, toys and bones to chew on. Familiar stuff. She could stretch out and snooze while I drove. Or gnaw on bones. Whatever she felt like doing was ok with me because she was out of the way. No coming up into the front of the car or sitting beside me. I did not strap her in but now have a harness for her that attaches to the seat belt which I will use when/if we go on another road trip. We have been invited back east in June, not sure yet if we will go.
2. Speaking dog language. I sing songs to her, making them up as I go along. She has learned that when I sing the beach song that means we are going to the beach and she perks up. Or when I sing the doggie park song, she’ll be ready to play with doggie pals. One of the sweetest sounds is the yum yum song, meaning we’re gonna go eat some food. Salivation.
3. Give me a potty break. I take frequent breaks/stops along the way to our destinations and often times intentionally stop at places I know that she will enjoy, if possible. Beaches, dog parks, pet friendly wineries as well as shopping malls and pet stores. When we have the time to do this, it definitely breaks up the monotony of the road and makes the traveling easier and more fun.
4. Time and traffic. We usually were not in a rush to get anywhere, so our time schedule was flexible. If we had to be somewhere at a certain time, I’d leave more than enough time to get there. When traveling on a holiday weekend, go a day or two ahead if you can or a day or two later to avoid the rush hour traffic. Same with summer travel. Be aware of times when traffic gets jammed up and take a different route, if possible.
5. Unexpected things will always happen so prepare and expect an adventure. Bring car oil, gas can, a flashlight, a spare tire, camping gear, water, extra dog food and treats, towels, pillows, clothing, extra cash or credit card and other items you might need (shampoo, scissors, bandages, ointments and creams and oils) just in case.
6. Maps and driving directions. Keep in glove compartment. I am not always good about this. I know the general direction or city/place and then get there and not know where to go and have to search online or on my computer. Keep phone numbers and addresses handy, too. If you have a cell phone/I-phone, probably makes this easier. I have yet to succumb to the 21st century on this one but if you are traveling alone, especially in desolate areas such as the desert, having a cell phone is a good idea. Hopefully, there is a connection/dial tone when you need to use it.
7. Be a good guest. Bring your best manners with you. And pet waste bags. If renting a car, cover the seats with sheets and keep your pooch in a crate or harnessed to a dog bed in the back seat. Let the fur fly somewhere else than in the rental car or you might have to pay a hefty fee. Also, be sure of the rental car company’s pet policy before you get to the rental counter. At the pet friendly inn, hotel, motel, B&B or campground, find out ahead of time their do’s and don’ts, nearby places to visit including restaurants where you can take your pooch and fun dog friendly activities in the area.
8. Be considerate. Not everyone loves dogs and some people are afraid of dogs. And they don’t have to nor do some like pit bulls and other big dogs. And they do not have to either. Of course, rude comments, aggressive behavior and insults are not acceptable and discrimination is unwarranted. But if your dog is well behaved, does not run up to strangers, knock babies over, lick kid’s ice cream cones, bark or yap incessantly, share fur and drool everywhere or jump up on tables, people and furniture, a better time will be had for all. Make sure your fur baby is a good ambassador for the breed and species.
9. Accidents may happen. Bring your vet’s phone number, medical records, ID tags, photos of your pet and other info with you, just in case. Also any medications and a pet first aid kit (like the green one we suggested).
10. One is the loneliest number. Dogs do not like to be left alone in a hotel room, strange places or even in the familiar confines of your car. Do not ever leave your four legged friend unattended in a parked vehicle. On warm days, the temperature in your vehicle is unbearable, 120 degrees, even with the windows slightly open. In addition, your pet could be taken away by unscrupulous pet thieves looking to make a quick buck.
11. Does your Dog Have a License? If you and your dog are going to share the driving, be sure that they have their Pet’s Driver’s License. Kidding but Cici does now have her Pet Driver’s License, with all her ID listed on it plus a photo of her on it. Between this, her collar ID tag, microchip registered, she is all set to get up and go. Cannot wait for someone to ask for my driver’s license, I will definitely show them hers.