One of the biggest priorities in owning a dog is giving them a happy life. On the journey of giving them a joyful life, we, too, can find happiness and fulfillment in sharing experiences, journeys, and new adventures with your dog.
Now, perhaps you’re that person who loves exploring, camping, hiking, or any other outdoor activity. Maybe you’re willing to trek far and wide to reach something new and exciting. Perhaps you’re wondering how your dog can participate.
Well, the beauty is that most canines are ideally suited to intense travel and exercise, but it’s helpful to know a few things first, such as where to go and how to prepare your pet for the trip.
Let’s highlight a few items to check off the list before you brave the great outdoors for adventures with your dog.
Visit the vet
Taking your dog to the vet for a checkup probably isn’t the most exciting start of the journey, but it’s essential to ensure there are no underlying conditions or concerns that could impede your dog from making the most of the trip.
Moreover, it’s wise to ensure your pet’s shots are up to date before taking them wherever you choose.
When you visit the vet, for this reason, they can help you identify any areas of concern to watch out for on the road so that you can anticipate what might become a problem. Likewise, you might be able to learn what activities or places you should avoid with your dog to prevent them from being exposed to something harmful or risky.
And finally, you should collect your dog’s existing medical documentation. You should either bring it with you or store a digital copy of it all on your mobile device so that in the event of a medical emergency with your dog, you’ll have all of the most recent information at the ready.
Extended road trips with your dog
Traveling with any animal includes anticipating its needs and implementing steps to meet them.
Your canine friend can’t vocalize when they need a bathroom break, so plotting out frequent potty breaks is essential when traveling to your destination.
It’s also important to understand your dog’s temperament when traveling with them anywhere. Will they interact nicely with other dogs, or do they become anxious and aggressive?
Your dog’s demeanor with other animals, both tame and otherwise, is crucial to know before taking them on any long, extended trip. The last thing you want is to travel five hundred miles to learn that your dog won’t play nice with anyone or gets exhausted way too quickly.
You can prepare for adventures with your dog by taking them to local parks and gauging their attitude with other dogs and wildlife.
Test them by seeing how long they can walk in a single session. From there, you’ll understand what they can handle and what location best suits them.
Where to take them?
So, where do you go? Great question. As we mentioned above, dogs do, in fact, love parks. Any nature-dense locale that gives them a unique and fresh stimulus is like heaven for a dog.
Several national parks worth traveling to are well-suited for dogs to accompany their owners.
Contrary to its name, Death Valley National Park is very inviting for pet owners, offering various trails that suit a range of differently-sized dogs.
You’ll want to pick a season of the year that isn’t too hot or too cold so that your dog isn’t faced with overheating or getting too chilled. A lot of this depends on the climate of the area you choose to visit, so make sure to research the weather patterns before you commit to traveling there.
If your dog loves water, you can take them to the east or west coast to explore the ocean. In the case of Grand Haven on Michigan’s west coast, there is a sizable amount of pet attractions set up to entertain visiting dogs and their owners.
Final thoughts on adventures with your dog
Going on adventures with your dog can be an enriching experience. Still, it does take planning and consideration so you aren’t thrusting yourself and your canine companion into dilemmas you could have avoided with a bit of foresight.
Dogs can be very intuitive, but they require an extra degree of care and observation by their owners to stay safe. It’s not like traveling with another human who can be largely independent.
If you anticipate potential pitfalls and establish the proper expectations with your dog, you’ll be well on your way to having a pleasurable and memorable journey.
Miles Oliver is a proud dog lover and an outdoor enthusiast. He often writes on his patio with a hot cup of tea and his 4-year-old border collie mix by his feet. When Miles is not working as an independent freelance writer, he is most likely mountain biking and roaming the great outdoors with his four-legged companion.