A DogGeek.com exclusive by Teresa Barker
The sun is finally out, birds are singing, flowers are blooming, and the open road is calling. Although it may sound fun to hop in the car with your dog, open up all the windows and just drive, you won’t get far before you wish you’d packed him a bag, first.
Packing for a road trip with a dog can be fast and easy, and will help keep your pooch safe and comfortable on the drive. Here’s a few things to grab on your way out the door for a day of fun on the road, or to keep in a bag near the door for those spontaneous road-tripping urges!
Before you leave:
- Make sure that your dog is wearing ID tags and his collar (make sure that it has your cell phone number and not just your home address)
- Take the time to potty in your own yard before leaving (there might not be a good location right away, which is always when my dogs like to go)
- Check the weather forecast to be prepared for unexpected weather changes
What to Pack:
- Water dish and water (you don’t know the water quality in some areas, and a picky dog might refuse some)
- Tupperware container with food (that can be used as a feeding bowl, once the lid is removed) and snacks
- Harness or Seatbelt, for the safety of both of you
- Towels or a blanket for the seat (which can get hot in the sun)
- Extra towels/rags (for spills, wet/muddy paws, or accidents)
- Poop bags (always bring more than you think you’ll need!)
- Toys or a chew stick
- Canine first-aid kit
- Make sure that your dog is in good health and up for the excursion, including being current on vaccinations
- Spring means bugs! Remember to have flea/tick and heartworm protection for him
- Stop every 2 hours for a potty break and to stretch
- Don’t leave your dog in a parked car while you go inside for lunch. Pack your own snacks and enjoy a picnic together outdoors in the shade together.
A few minutes of packing, before you leave, can save you hours of frustration on the road. Most importantly, it will ensure that your pooch is safe and comfortable and will enjoy the ride, along with with you!
April 2, 2018 | DogGeek
No one wants to leave their dog at home when traveling, it’s like going without your best friend! Sometimes you have to though and when you do we like to our’s to be able to stay at home so we get a dog sitter. Dog sitters are great! Not only do your pets get to stay at home, you also get a house sitter and sometimes, with multiple dogs, it ends up being cheaper than boarding. When leaving though, always check the list below to make sure you left everything the dog sitter will need.
- Food – Always leave more food than the amount needed for the days you are away, you never know if you may be extended due to other circumstances.
- Food bowls – Make sure the food bowls, scoops and anything else needed is out for them to find.
- Medications – Leave out all the meds your dogs need along with exact instructions on how to give them and how often.
- Emergency Contact – You may not be available if an emergency happens. Always have a backup plan in place and let them know they are the backup plan.
- Toys – Make sure all your pup’s favorite toys are out. The dog sitter may not know where to get them.
- Crates – If your dogs are crate trained and that is their safe place, ensure that it is open and accessible.
- Treats – Ensure these are out but also ensure that you leave instructions about how and when you give them. Last thing you want is to come home to a dog that has been getting 10 treats an hour.
- Old towels – In case of accident, you don’t want your good towels used ;-)
- Poop bags – You know you want them to clean up!
- Your contact information and itenerary – This way your dog sitter knows where you at and when they can get in touch with you.
- Collar – Make sure your dog’s collar is on and that the contact information is readable just in case they get out.
Find a dog sitter for your next trip >>
July 21, 2014 | DogGeek
As a frequent traveler I have to leave my pups at home a lot more than I would like to. Fortunately, my wife and I have been lucky enough to find some great dog sitters and house sitters to take care of our “kids” when we’re out. Unfortunately though, each sitter always forgets to do a couple of things that we think would take them from being a good dog sitter to a great dog sitter that we would promote more to all of our friends and family. Add these things to your list and you’ll win us over as clients for life!
- Check in each day with a text to let us know how things are going, nothing fancy, just let us know you’re really there.
Important though to remember that we’re traveling and may not be on the same time zone so don’t make it too early or late.
- Send a photo of the pups having fun or lounging around. It just takes a second and reinforces the fact that our pups are safe.
- Leave a note for uswhen we get home. It leaves your client with a warm and fuzzy to ensure they call you next time.
- Invest in Square, PayPal or other ways to take credit cards. Sure, cash is king, but after I see that note you just left I can’t leave a cash tip when you are gone.
- Create an email list and use a service like MailChimp to send out emails around the holidays to remind people to book your services before all of your time is taken. It doesn’t cost much and is easy to use.
- Create a small website. Use a service like Blogger, WordPress, WIX, etc. that is free. That way people can have your contact info and find you.
- Create a Facebook page and Twitter feed. It may seem useless to you, but it will help people find your site and give a place for your clients to say good things about you. When was the last time you bought something without a review? This will help you get them.
The bottoms line is that people’s dogs are their family. Just as when you are traveling without your wife or kids, you always like to hear from them or check in. With your pups, you can’t always do that so be there to help put our minds at ease. These tips will help you get more clients and help ensure that your current ones stay with you.
June 19, 2014 | DogGeek