How To Road Trip With Your Dog: 7 Practical Tips

Original Road tip with dog tips post 6/2013 updated 5/2023

Embarking on a road trip with your furry friend can be an exciting and rewarding experience. Whether you’re heading to a scenic destination or visiting loved ones, taking your dog along adds an extra layer of joy and companionship to your journey.

However, road tripping with a dog requires some extra planning and considerations to ensure a safe and comfortable adventure for both you and your four-legged companion. In this guide, we’ll explore essential tips and suggestions to help you make the most of your road trip with your beloved pup.

From preparation and safety measures to entertainment and bonding opportunities, get ready to hit the road and create unforgettable memories with your canine co-pilot. So buckle up, grab a leash, and let’s get started on your dog-friendly road trip adventure!

 So grab your dog and your car and learn how you make car travel easier.
golden retriever hanging out of car for tips on roadtrips with dogs

Before we dive into each tip, here’s an overview of 7 dog road trip tips:

  1. Plan Ahead Bring the necessities and essentials
  2. Safety First 
  3. Take frequent breaks
  4. Exercise and Play
  5. Bring the necessities and essentials
  6. Comfort and Rest 
  7. Safety measures Identification and Microchipping

Taking a road trip with your family this summer? If so does that include your four-legged dogs? We have taken our pup,

Chloe on a few trips in the past and have given her treats like bully sticks to keep occupied. Wow, they often create smells from some of these dogs treats that will make us open our windows in 100 degree weather. I think I have the solution for your next road trip with your dog.


  1. Plan Ahead: Before hitting the road, make sure to plan your trip in advance. Research pet-friendly accommodations, identify dog-friendly attractions and parks along your route, and pack all the necessary supplies for your furry friend, including food, water, bedding, toys, and any medications they may need.
  2. Safety First: Ensure the safety of your dog by using a secure and comfortable crate or a safety harness designed for car travel. This will prevent them from roaming freely and causing distractions while you drive. It’s also important to never leave your dog alone in a parked car, as temperatures can rise quickly and lead to heatstroke.



dogs on leashes on a trail

3. Frequent Pit Stops: Dogs need regular breaks to stretch their legs, relieve themselves, and get some fresh air. Plan for frequent pit stops at dog-friendly rest areas or parks where your pup can have a quick walk or playtime. Remember to always clean up after your dog and keep them on a leash.

4. Exercise and Play: Dogs have energy to burn, so incorporate exercise and playtime into your road trip. Look for parks or hiking trails along your route where you can take your dog for a longer walk or hike. This will not only keep them physically active but also provide mental stimulation and prevent restlessness during the journey.

dogs on a rock in richmond river

5. Pack Essentials: Pack a separate bag for your dog’s essentials, including food, water, bowls, medication, leash, poop bags, towels, and a first aid kit. It’s also a good idea to bring their favorite toys, blankets, and bedding to provide them with a sense of familiarity and comfort during the trip.  Check out our 5 Packing Tips For Traveling With Your Dog

6. Comfort and Rest: Create a comfortable space for your dog in the car. Line their crate or designated area with soft bedding to ensure a cozy and secure environment. If your dog gets anxious during car rides, you can try using calming aids like pheromone sprays or natural supplements recommended by your vet.

golden retriever laying in car

7. Identification and Microchipping: Before embarking on your road trip, ensure that your dog has proper identification, including a collar with an up-to-date ID tag. Consider getting your dog microchipped or confirming that their existing microchip information is current. This will help ensure their safe return in case they get lost during the trip.

Remember, every dog is unique, so adjust these tips to suit your furry friend’s specific needs. Happy travels with your canine companion!


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