Home Dogs 13 Dog Travel Essentials You Need for Your Next Road Trip

13 Dog Travel Essentials You Need for Your Next Road Trip

by victoriavadenking
2 comments 10 mins read
dog travel

Having your dog as a travel companion is always an enjoyable experience. It’s during these moments that you can bond with your dog. However, while traveling, your pet needs to be comfortable. And this entails packing all dog travel essential items that your dog may require during your road trip or vacation.

This post is all about 13 items to pack in your dog travel bag.

1. Dog Food

The first item in your dog travel essentials is obviously your dog’s food. Remember to carry extra servings of either wet or dry food. Furthermore, ensure this dog food is stored in a tightly closed food container.

2. Water

Ensure your pet is hydrating frequently during these cross-country road trips. You can store the water in a portable dog water bottle or large container.

3. Crate or Carrier

According to the humane society, your dog should not be roaming all over as you drive; your furry friend needs to be in a crate. If you have a cat, it needs to be in a carrier.

A pet carrier or crate will prevent your dog or cat from becoming airborne in case of an accident. This crate or carrier needs to be anchored well on the seat using a sturdy seat belt.

4. Dog Toys

Sometimes cross, country road trips with dogs can be overwhelming and boring. One essential item that will help keep your pet calm and busy is a toy.

You can get puzzle toys that will challenge your pet’s intelligence during travel or stay in a hotel. And if you have a teething pup, a teething toy can help soothe the gums as well as keep your dog busy.

5. Pet Routine Bed

Even if it’s travel time, there is no need to compromise on your dog’s comfort. Remember to carry your dog’s favorite bed in your dog travel essentials bag. Also, a familiar item like his favorite bed will help keep your dog calm if he is scared of the new environment.

dog travel
Takoda’s dog bed is a PetFusion Ultimate Orthopedic Dog Bed

6. Extra Leash and/or Collar

Sometimes, your dog’s regular leash or collar may break while on a cross-country road trip. That can be stressful for any pet parent. To be on the safe side, always pack an extra leash or collar in case of an emergency.

7. First Aid Box

The first aid box is one of the dog travel essential items to pack for pet-friendly travel. As you know, a first aid box can be of much help if your dog is injured.

Remember to include bandages, surgical spirit, and styptic powder for dogs. You can also include tweezers in this first aid box for easier removal of ticks.

Also, remember to include hydrogen peroxide, which will help if your dog decides to feast on a poisonous plant.

8. Dog Poop Bags

Don’t leave your pet’s excrement lying all over; it’s a disrespect to other pet parents. Ensure all of your dog’s poop is collected and stored in a poop bag for later disposal. This is a must that you’ll want to add (several of) on your dog travel essentials checklist.

9. Grooming Kit

Traveling with your pet doesn’t mean you neglect all the grooming aspects of your dog. Grooming is a must. Have a brush to keep the coat tidy. Also, include wet wipes that will be handy if you want to spot clean your pet.

10. Current Picture of your Dog

Your explorative pet may vanish from where you are, and retracing him can be quite a hard task. This probably wasn’t what you were expecting, and you’re probably thinking you have a million and one photos on your phone, but you’ll want to add a hard copy of your dog to your dog travel essentials checklist.

However, if you have a recent picture of your dog, you can create plenty of copies and distribute them all over. Perhaps someone might have come across your dog on the run, which will be a great breakthrough when it comes to searching for your dog.

dog travel
Avera has been on multiple cross-country road trips and two plane rides.

11. Proof of Vaccinations

Have a certified document that proves that your dog is vaccinated. If you are flying with your dog, this is HIGHLY suggested to add to your dog travel essentials.

Having flown with Avera more than once, I made sure to have extra copies, because this will be a major nightmare if you are asked at the airport, and you don’t have the documentation.

You can store all vaccination proof in the cloud for easier access. If that’s not a viable option, have hard copies that prove your dog is fully vaccinated.

dog travel
My dogs have been pet patients of Banfield Pet Hospital for the past 10 years.

12. Dog Medication

Don’t forget to carry your dog’s medication during your cross-country trips with dogs. That will be helpful, more so if you have a dog with chronic illness. 

You don’t want your dog to skip his diabetes medication when you are on a staycation in a hotel. That might be a regrettable mistake so make sure to include it with your dog travel essentials.

dog travel essentials
Avera takes UTI for Dog vitamins daily, so it’s essential to pack in her dog travel bag.

13. Flea and Tick Repellants

Traveling with your pet doesn’t mean that parasites will give your fur baby a break. They may even be plenty wherever you will be moving. Thus, it’s vital you have plenty of flea and tick repellents. The best option is to have a tick and flea collar to help ward off these pesky parasites.

dog travel tips
I use Bravecto for both of my dogs. It comes in different sizes based on your pet’s weight right to your door.

This post was all about dog travel essentials.

dog travel essentials

Cross-country trips with dogs need proper prior planning and prioritization of safety for everything to run smoothly. If your main question is how to drive cross country with dogs, then these tips will be of great help.

  • Visit a vet- the vet will be crucial in advising whether your dog can manage cross-country road trips. The vet might even help you choose the essential items to pack for pet-friendly travel.
  • Train your dog to love car rides.
  • Don’t feed your dog 2-3 hrs before traveling- eating right before traveling can bring up stomach upset. Also, if your dog is on a full stomach, it’s more likely to get motion sickness.
  • Your furry friend should not stick his head out of an open window- we know your dog likes the cool breeze blowing his face. However, that is hazardous. Flying insects and debris can easily injure your dog’s head when it’s out.
  • Another tip for driving cross country with dogs is taking frequent stops. Often driving without a rest can be boring for your pet. These stops will give your pet a chase to go potty and even enjoy sniffing new scents.
  • Don’t leave your dog inside an unattended car. The temperatures inside the car may rise, which might prove fatal for your dog.

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Jasmine Hewitt March 17, 2022 - 10:09 am

this is a great guide, I love how you have everything together!

victoriavadenking April 11, 2022 - 12:32 am

Thank you! I still refer to this myself when we travel. I hope it’s helpful for you if you decide to travel with your pup.


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victoria vaden

a diaper duties mom blog


victoria vaden king

Victoria Vaden

Original YouTuber when ‘viral’ was just a flu symptom. My English degree qualified me to tell stories (the good kind). So, I'm sharing the not-so-normal reality of motherhood and marriage.

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DYEM is for the not-so-perfect, spit-up-stained, smile-through-anything moms out there looking for sanity. Motherhood is messy and full of mistakes. You'll find plenty of that here.

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