From a Professional Organizer Who’s Also a Devoted Dog Mom! 

As pet parents, these days many of us take our dogs with us to far more places than we used to. Dog friendly cafés are a big trend, in Houston and nationwide, dog parks have become the norm and more and more stores are becoming dog friendly too.

This does mean that this summer, more and more pet owners are considering going on a road trip with their dog for the first time. An organized dog road trip plan is key to keeping things organized, safe and comfortable for everyone involved when preparing to hit the road.

While you’re no doubt super excited about heading off on a trip with your pooch as a travelling companion, at the same time, you want to ensure that your dog is healthy and happy the entire car ride and has a positive experience exploring the open road. After all, he’s never done this before, and you aren’t exactly sure how he will react.

Before you set out for the adventure of a lifetime, read these dog road trip organization tips so that both of you can have a wonderful time. As a devoted dog mom myself, I make use of them all and have found them to be very helpful. I’ve even included some of the products that you might want to grab from Amazon to help with dog road trip organization. And if you need some extra tips for keeping your pets, and pet supplies, organized when you are at home, you’ll find some I’ve shared before here.

Dog Road Trip Organization Tip #1: Buy The Right Safety Gear

dog road trip organization

Your dog should not be let loose in the car while you are driving. In addition to being distracting, it puts him at risk for catastrophic injury in the event of an accident. It’s better to confine your dog in a backseat carrier that is secured to a seat belt. Your dog should be able to stand up, turn around, and lay down comfortably in the carrier.

Other useful safety equipment to stop your dog from sliding to the floor of the car are a car seat, a car harness, or a car hammock seat cover.

One great example of an excellent dog car seat is the Bochao Dog Car Seat . It measures at 22.44 by 21.25 by 12.99 inches (length by width by height), and it can handle most small- to medium-sized dogs as well as some large ones. This ‘pet bed for cars’ is composed of premium Oxford fabric, which is wear- and bite-resistant, according to the manufacturer. A safety tether with an adjustable buckle is included with the Bochao to keep your dog happy and secure.

This dog car seat’s internal padding is constructed of polypropylene (PP) cotton, which is both lightweight and strong. It should be mentioned that this dog car seat is machine washable, even if the hooks and buckles cannot be removed, which is helpful if your pooch has an accident, or gets a little muddy or sandy on his out of car adventures.

Bigger dogs who are too large for a car seat should still be secured. The Bark Belt is a great choice. They work just like a human seatbelt, can be used in any vehicle and are strength tested on some BIG dogs (up to 100 pounds)

Dog Road Trip Organization Tip #2: Always Bring a Pet Specific First Aid Kit

dog road trip organization tips
Golden Retriever with First-Aid-Kit

You never know when you’re going to run into trouble. If you have a pet first aid kit on hand, you can be more prepared if disaster strikes. In your pet first aid kit, you might include:

  • scissors
  • adhesive tape
  • saline eye solution
  • absorbent gauze pads
  • antibiotic ointment
  • alcohol wipes
  • an extra supply of his medicine, supplements, and dog food
  • 3% hydrogen peroxide (in case you need to make your dog vomit)

Additionally, bring antihistamines and nausea medications if your dog experiences motion or car sickness. Just be sure to ask your vet which ones are best for your dog and how much to give them every time he exhibits symptoms of illness. Motion sickness should be lessened by keeping your windows rolled down a few inches.

Dog Road Trip Organization Tip #3: Bring Along All Your Dog’s ID Information

Ideally, your pup will do just what you ask him to for the whole trip. But there is still a chance that he’ll get lost somewhere along the way. While he might be able to find his way home alone when you ARE at home, when on a road trip it’s essential that you organize things so that finding him will be as quick and easy as possible if you are separated.

In addition to making sure the information attached to his microchip is up-to-date (and getting him one if he does not yet) endure that he has a collar tag with the pertinent information that will make it easier for him to be reunited with you – name, your phone number and email address, and a note about any allergies – and if you are an Apple tech user adding an Air Tag to his collar will make him as easy to track as your phone is.

You should also bring along your pet’s medical records, including any proofs of vaccine, as not only would that help a vet in an emergency, but some dog parks and other facilities might insist on seeing them before they allow your pooch in. A pet passport like this one is a great way to organize all these documents and more

Dog Road Trip Organization Tip #4: Take Portable Food and Water Bowls

dog road trip organization

When you’re creating your dog road trip organization plan, you might not immediately think about how much space you’re going to have in your car. If you’re going on a long trip, it’s likely packed to the gills. Save some room and bring collapsible food and water bowls that you can easily store as well as hook onto your leash for a walk. These are an excellent choice, and they are just as useful for use at the dog park when you get back home!

Dog Road Trip Organization Tip #5: Plan the Trip Ahead With Your Dog’s Needs in Mind

dog road trip organization

Don’t forget to research dog-friendly locations and entertaining rest spots while creating the ideal dog road trip itinerary. For instance, you could use BringFido to look into nearby eateries, dog parks, and dog beaches that welcome pets. You could also look at GoPetFriendly, which offers ideas for activities you can do with your dog while driving.

Make sure they are dog-friendly before making a reservation if you want to visit national parks and national forests while traveling cross-country. You should keep your dog on a short leash at all times and stay on the people- and dog-friendly hiking trails because there are wild creatures roaming about state parks.

You should outfit your dog with a reflective vest if you plan to go hiking in the evening. To make sure your dog gets enough exercise and is properly worn out before getting back into the car, you could also put a hiking backpack on him.

Get a dog life jacket if you plan to visit any watering holes for safety. The best canine life vests will include padded straps that can adjusted for a snug fit.

Finally, try to schedule your stops at gas stations along your route so that your dog may get some exercise and fresh air as well. Waze is a great app for doing this, and it is an excellent GPS app in general (and free!)

Speaking of organization, the summer is also a great time to get organized at home once yo are back from your road trip. Whether you need help with decluttering, home organization, office organization or have just decided it’s time to #getorganized in general, Just Organized by Taya can help. Book a free Zoom call so we can chat about your Houston professional organization needs or get started right away by booking an appointment here.

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