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Tips for Safe and Enjoyable Road Trips with Your Pets

Tips for Safe and Enjoyable Road Trips with Your Pets

Lynn Mendez

Did you know 82% of U.S. pet owners take their pets on road trips? Imagine exploring new places with your furry friend! However, travelling with pets requires careful planning to ensure their safety and comfort.

Proper planning is essential for a pet-friendly road trip. It’s not just about packing food and toys; you need to consider their health, safety, and how they’ll handle long hours in the car.

In this article, we’ll cover packing essentials, choosing pet-friendly accommodations, and maintaining routines on the road. Plus, we'll discuss the importance of using a GPS tracker for your pet to ensure you never lose track of them. 

Whether you're a seasoned traveller with pets or planning your first trip, these tips will help make your journey smooth and enjoyable.

Key Takeaways

  • Planning and Preparation: Schedule a veterinary check-up and pack essential items.
  • Safety Measures: Take regular breaks, control the car’s temperature, and create a comfortable environment.
  • Entertainment: Use interactive toys and pet-safe treats.
  • Pet-Friendly Destinations: Choose pet-friendly accommodations and activities.
  • Emergency Preparedness: Keep veterinary contacts, pack a first aid kit, and use a GPS tracker.
  • GPS Tracker Benefits: Easy tracking, quick recovery, safety alerts, peace of mind, long battery life, durability, and user-friendly app.

1. Preparation Before the Trip

Be prepared before your road trip with your lovely pet using these tips:

Veterinary Check-up

  • Before going on the road, schedule a veterinary check-up for your pet. A health check-up ensures your pet is fit to travel and can help catch any potential health issues.
  • Make sure your pet is up to date on vaccinations and get travel-specific health advice from your vet. Some destinations may require specific vaccinations or health certificates, so it's essential to be prepared.


Preparation Before the Road Trip with Pets

Packing Essentials
Packing for your pet is as important as packing for yourself. Here’s a list of essential items to bring:

  • Water and Food: Keep your pet hydrated and well-fed with their regular food.
  • Leash and Collar: For walks and safety during stops.
  • Toys: Familiar toys help keep your pet entertained and calm.
  • First Aid Kit: Include bandages, antiseptic wipes, and any necessary medications.
  • Carrier or Crate: Ensure it's comfortable and secure for safe travels.
Training and Acclimatization
  • If your pet isn’t used to car rides, start with short practice trips to help them adjust. Gradually increase the duration of these trips to get your pet accustomed to longer journeys. 
  • Make the car a positive space by bringing their favourite blanket or toy. 
  • Reward them with treats for calm behaviour during the trip. This training will help reduce anxiety and make the road trip more enjoyable for both you and your pet.
Avoid Feeding Right Before the Drive
Feed your pet three to four hours before the trip to prevent motion sickness. Avoid feeding your pet in a moving vehicle, even on long drives.

    2. Safety During the Trip

    Here are some safety tips during the trip you should know about that:

    Secure Restraint Systems
    Using restraints keeps your pet safe during sudden stops or accidents and prevents them from distracting the driver, ensuring a safer trip for everyone. 

    There are different types of pet restraints to consider:

    • Pet Seat Belts: These attach to your pet’s harness and keep them secure in one place.
    • Carriers or Crates: These provide a safe and comfortable space for your pet  reducing the risk of injury and can be strapped in with a seat belt.
    • Pet Barriers: These keep your pet in a specific area of the car, usually the back seat or trunk if you have an SUV.

    Regular Breaks

    • Regular breaks are essential for your pet’s comfort and well-being during a road trip. Plan to stop every 2-3 hours for exercise and bathroom breaks. Many highways have designated pet-friendly rest areas.
    • Apps like BringFido can help you find these spots. Always keep your pet on a leash during breaks for their safety.


    Temperature Control
    Keeping your car's temperature comfortable is vital for your pet's safety. Never leave your pet alone in a hot car. Cars heat up quickly, causing heatstroke, which can be fatal.

    Here are some tips to keep the car cool and comfortable:
    • Air Conditioning: Use the AC to keep the temperature down.
    • Sunshades: Place sunshades on windows to block direct sunlight.
    • Ventilation: Keep windows slightly open for fresh air circulation.
    • Frequent Water Breaks: Ensure your pet has access to water throughout the trip.

    3. Comfort and Entertainment

    Comfortable Environment

    • Creating a cosy space for your pet in the car is essential for their comfort during a road trip. Arrange a soft bed or blanket in their designated area. This helps them feel secure and relaxed.
    • Bringing familiar items like their favourite toy or a piece of clothing can also reduce stress and make them feel at home.


    Keeping your pet entertained during long drives can be challenging but is important for their happiness and well-being. Here are some ideas:

    • Interactive Toys: Toys that dispense treats or make noises can keep your pet engaged and stimulated.
    • Chew Toys: Durable chew toys can help relieve boredom and anxiety.
    • Pet-Safe Treats: Offer special treats that are safe for your pet to eat while travelling.

    4. Choosing Pet-Friendly Destinations

    When planning a trip with your pet, finding pet-friendly destinations is crucial. Here are some points written below:

    Researching Destinations
    • Start by researching accommodations that welcome pets. Websites like BringFido and PetFriendly can help you find hotels, motels, and vacation rentals that allow pets. Always check the pet policies to know about any fees, size limits, or specific rules.
    • Look for attractions and activities that are pet friendly. Many parks, beaches, and even some restaurants and cafes welcome pets. Read reviews from other pet owners to get an idea of what to expect.
    Planning Pet-Friendly Activities
    Planning activities that both you and your pet can enjoy makes the trip more fun. Here are some suggestions:
    • Nature Walks and Hikes: Explore pet-friendly trails and parks. It’s a great way for both of you to get exercise and enjoy the outdoors.
    • Beaches and Lakes: Many beaches and lakes have areas where pets can swim and play.
    • Pet-Friendly Attractions: Some tourist attractions, like botanical gardens and outdoor markets, allow pets.
    • Dining: Find restaurants with outdoor seating that allow pets. Many places even offer special pet menus!

    5. Emergency Preparedness

    Being prepared for emergencies is crucial when travelling with your pet. Here are some essential tips for emergencies(e.g.; Sickness, injury, missing your pets or getting lost):

    Emergency Contacts and Plans
    • Start by having a list of veterinary clinics along your route. Websites like VetLocator can help you find nearby vets in case of emergencies. Write down their addresses and phone numbers and keep this list easily accessible.
    • In addition to veterinary contacts, have a plan for unexpected situations. Pack a pet first aid kit with essentials like bandages, antiseptic wipes, and any medications your pet might need. 
    • Prepare a recent photo, medical papers, and identification for your pet. Ensure your pet wears a tag with their name, your name, and contact information. This helps in quickly finding and returning your pet if they get lost.

    Using a GPS tracker
    Using a GPS tracker on your pet's collar can be a lifesaver. If your pet wanders off or gets lost, a GPS tracker will help you locate them quickly. Make sure the tracker is charged and functioning before you leave.

    Tracki Pet GPS Tracker - Trip with Pets

    6. Benefits of GPS Tracker for Road Trips with Pets

    Taking a road trip with your pet can be an exciting adventure, but it also comes with the responsibility of keeping your furry friend safe. One way to ensure their safety is by using a Pet GPS tracker

    Here are the several benefits:

    • Easy Tracking: Always know your pet’s location in real time, which is especially useful in unfamiliar areas.
    • Quick Recovery: If your pet gets lost, the GPS trackers help you find them quickly, reducing stress and worry.
    • Safety Alerts: Receive instant alerts if your pet leaves a designated safe zone, allowing you to act immediately.
    • Peace of Mind: Knowing you can locate your pet anytime gives you peace of mind, making the trip more enjoyable.
    • Long Battery Life: Tracki GPS trackers have a long battery life, ensuring continuous monitoring throughout your journey.
    • Durable and Waterproof: Designed to withstand different weather conditions, making it reliable in any situation.
    • User-Friendly App: The accompanying app is easy to use and provides accurate location data, accessible from your smartphone.
    • Compact Size: Small and lightweight, it is comfortable for your pet to wear without causing discomfort.


    Travelling with your pet can be a rewarding experience. With proper planning, you can ensure their safety, comfort, and enjoyment. Start with a veterinary check-up, pack essential items, and use secure restraint systems. Regular breaks, temperature control, and a cosy car environment keep your pet happy.

    Research pet-friendly destinations and plan activities you both can enjoy. Emergency preparedness, including using a GPS tracker, is crucial for peace of mind. Follow these tips to make your road trip with your pet smooth and memorable.

    Author information:
    Lynn Mendez

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