The Scoop: Road Tripping with the Dogs of Ruffwear
Load up and hit the road with the office dogs of Ruffwear. There's a lot to learn on-the-go, and sometimes it's those tiniest hacks and aha! moments that can make the trip that much smoother. We're here to help get you and your dog out there with tips, travel gear, and even a few destinations to add to your route.
Kelly & Juniper
Favorite Road Trip: From Bend, OR to Fraser, CO
Juniper's Road Trip In-Car Set-Up: Dirtbag™ Seat Cover, her memory foam bed over top for extra cuddliness, her Load Up™ Harness and a Knot-a-Long™ Leash.
Pro Tip: The carabiner on the Knot-a-Long™ works great to clip easily to the loop on her Load Up™ Harness for quick potty stops.
Bag Packing Tip: I pack her Haul Bag™ full of treats, a little freeze-dried food or kibble in her Kibble Kaddie™, a walking harness/leash combo (like Hi & Light™ Harness + Crag™ Leash), poop bags, full water bottles, a Quencher™ Bowl, and some calming treats (we like Natural Dog Company Calming Chews - I try to remember to give her a full dose of these treats 30 minutes before we jump in the car).
Car Packing Tip: I make sure I leave space behind the passenger seat to put her Haul Bag™ full of all the on-the-road necessities listed above - that way it is super easy to grab anything she may need en route.
Izzy, Bronco & Campbells
Favorite Road Trip: We are frequently driving to Hood River and love discovering new swimmy holes and untouched snowy camp roads. It's not the longest drive but filled with opportunities for adventure.
Pro Tip: Pick up some sort of large water container. There have been many-a car camping adventure where having extra water has come in super handy.
Car Packing Tip: Another clutch item for warm weather road trips are the mesh window coverings which allow you to have the windows fully down and keep dust and bugs mostly out.
For Best Results: I would also remember to stop often and enjoy where ever you are even it is to just take a quick walk or look at the view. If your dog(s) are feeling antsy in the car, there's no point in rushing to your destination.
Jill, Kit & Woody
Favorite Road Trip Destination: Ashville, North Carolina! Dog friendly like at home, great hikes, and great beer :)
We've done 2 cross country road trips with our 2 Bernese mountain dogs. One of them has been to 28 states.
Pro Tip: If you're renting a car, be sure to put down a Dirty Dog Seat Cover and/or a king sized sheet or two because getting out dog hair after your trip and before returning that rental car is the last thing you want to be doing when you're just exhausted.
Packing Tips: You don't need as much as you think you do for dog entertainment, whatever you have packed, cut it down by 1/2 or more. For two dogs, I take 3 toys, and they are all different textures/shapes to rotate their moods.
You can never have enough water, towels, dog food, dog friendly snacks while driving. Because they're likely not moving as much with 10 hour drive days, bring some veggies for them to snack on. Our pups love carrots in the car.
Grab some sedatives from your vet before you go. Different states have different rules on setting off fireworks and there's also thunderstorms that look/feel different than home. You don't know what's going to scare your pup.
Plan Your Pit Stops: Bring Fido is my favorite app for dog friendly stops (think: hotels, parks, restaurants, breweries), particularly for identifying ones close to the highway. A typical stop on the road would be my husband dropping me and the pups off at a park to get their energy out while he gasses up and grabs food to go and picks me back up.
Marriotts are the most dog-friendly hotel franchise IMO, but it comes at a cost. They will typically make exceptions to their #/weight policy when you call or email directly if you've got 2 big doggos like we do. When/if that fails, airbnbs have been great, too.
On the Road: Move your radio settings to be front of car only. So when you blast your tunes, you don't hurt their ears. We also do dog seat belts, attached to their harness. One doggo in the trunk, one doggo in the back seat to give them space from each other AND the opportunity to move around for comfort.
We bring food dispensing dog feeders for them to eat their food. It tires them out because it forces them to use their brain, and gets them up and moving (plus slows their intake, too). Any opportunity to tire them out when we don't have a ton of space is helpful.
Do basic tricks that you know they'll ultimately be successful doing with them in new spaces and locations. They may ace sit, down, stay, at home but when new smells and sounds are at play, going back to basics will help build a bond, trust, and reinforce behaviors that will help in public settings.