Five Steps to Turn Your Homebody Dog into a Road Trip Expert

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85% of pet owners travel with their pets and why wouldn't you? When done right, car travel with pets can save on boarding costs and keep your best furry friend by your side no matter where you go. Whether you’re heading on a cross-country quest or over the river and through the woods to Grandmother’s house, use these tips to keep your furry friend content when driving. 
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Safety Always Comes First

Car accidents with improper safety restraints injure and kill thousands of pets per year. Make sure your pup is safe by firmly securing his crate. While there are dog car seats, they are often not as comfortable for long journeys and can be distracting to you. Don’t feel bad about crating your dog. It’s safer for both of you if they are firmly secured! Another great option for smaller dogs is a multi-functional pet carrier so you can buckle them in, roll them around or carry them on your back.

Give your dog plenty of time to get used to their carrier and make it comfortable with a blanket or their other favorite toys.

You should also have specialty first aid items on hand in case of cut paws or other injuries.

Show Them How the Car Can Be Fun

Oftentimes, the only car rides dogs take are to the vet, so it’s important to also show your dog that longer car rides lead to enjoyable outings! If you’re planning a longer road trip, start with trips to the local dog park or friends and family's houses, so they'll associate the car with a good time. 

Make Sure You Have the Proper Doguments

If you are crossing state or border lines, take your pet to the vet to obtain a proper health check and documents for travel. Have the name of a vet or animal hospital in hand in case any emergencies arise.

Don’t Forget their Favorite Food and Treats

Your preferred dog food may not be available at regional stores around your destination, so make sure to pack enough food for puppy breakfast and dinner!

dog begging for food portland pet food companyIf your pup prefers our all-natural, US made meals and treats, join the PPFC pack and you can have treats and meals delivered as frequently as you want, so you can grab the meals needed and go on your adventure, without the hassle of shopping for pet food!

Keep them Healthy and Well Rested Before Travel

A well-exercised dog will be more likely to settle down in the car than a dog who’s bouncing off the walls. You should also feed your dog 1-2 hours before you leave to avoid carsickness, but also keep them full on the road.

Have water accessible for your pet, but not enough to cause enough any accidents. For longer trips, make sure to take potty breaks and stretch your legs every 2-3 hours.

What are other secrets you’ve found work for calming a great pet? Tell us in the comments or on our social channels, @portlandpetfood!
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