Do you know how to travel with a German Shepherd? To start, if you are planning on traveling over night with your dog, via car or motor home, you must do some research first on pet-friendly lodging . Whether you prefer a hotel or a motel to stay at, do not wait until the last minute to make reservations.
Depending on the length of your trip (3 days, 7 days or more) you must get things ready for your trip with your furry little buddy well ahead of time.
First of all, get a medium size box (this depends, again, on the length of time you plan on being away from home.
In that box you must first of all place whatever medications your dog is currently taking. One of my German Shepherds, for example, suffers from occasional seizures, and I always carry the Phenobarbital tablets with me at all times.
Remember most of these meds are by prescription only and it will be difficult to obtain once you are away from your vet. Also, it is quite important to add to your medicine box, a box of bandages, antiseptic tape, tweezers, scissors, mercurochrome, peroxide, alcohol, sterile cotton balls, an elastic bandage (in case of a sprained leg) and maybe even a Dog First Aid Kit .
Why, you may ask? Simple. Suppose as you travel with a German Shepherd you are walking your dog in an unfamiliar area and he happens to step on a piece of broken glass or gets a splinter in his paw. You will need tweezers, disinfectants and bandages. After you have compiled all your medical needs for your pet the next step is to add a blanket to put on the seat where he will be lying for most of the trip while moving. It must be warm, yet not so heavy that your GSD gets over heated.
If you are traveling, let's say in the south, where the weather is usually warm during the summer months, a light thermal blanket will do. If you travel with a German Shepherd in the winter months up north, then a heavier blank would be more appropriate.
Remember to always carry a roll of paper towels in that box too when you travel with a German Shepherd. In case the dog gets car sick and, well, you know what I’m talking about. You must assess how much food your dog will eat during those days while you are traveling too.
You certainly do not want to have to stop at a store somewhere to buy dog food! If your dog eats canned food, then depending on the size of the dog, take 1 can per day. If he is a larger size dog and eats two cans, then 2 cans per day will suffice. If he eats only dry food, again, depending on your dog's size you must take sufficient food, either a 5 lb. bag or larger.
Take a couple of extra gallons of water when you travel with a German Shepherd too. Remember that pets usually get warmer than humans do and they might get thirsty while you are driving. I always place a deep dish on the floor of the back of my car so that my dog can reach it easily and drink to his heart's content.
It might be a good idea to purchase one of those containers that refill automatically as he drinks. But that is a matter of choice. Remember also, to take some doggie treats to give him between stops. It will show that you care about him enough to reward his good behavior.
Lastly, but not less important is to take his favorite toys with him. This will ease the strain of the trip. Whenever possible drive with the back window partially open. Dogs often feel more relaxed if they can feel fresh air coming through than with the air conditioner on all of the time. And do not forget to always walk your dog with a leash. His rabies shot must be up to date as many hotels will require proof of vaccination.
You should make hotel or motel reservations far in advance of your day of arrival. Make sure they are Pet Friendly Hotels . Look for places that have walking areas for your dog. These hotels are becoming quite popular as more people travel with their pets. They are usually well lit and safe to walk your canine partner even late at night. Make sure you check with the hotel manager for these facilities.
If they don't have a secluded place for your dog to exercise, then cross them off your list. It's not worth it to stop at a hotel/motel where you will have to take your dog blocks away to take care of his business. Especially early in the morning or late at night.
While driving to your destination, try to stop every two hours or so. Let your dog walk around for a while and give him a chance to do his business, safely and quietly. Praise him when he does well and he will probably sleep most of the way if he is well fed and relaxed.
I used to travel with my two German shepherds, from Georgia to Kentucky, three times or more every year and by following the above procedures I do not recall ever having a bad experience. I enjoyed vacationing with my dogs as they were always considered part of my family and were always a pleasure to travel with. You can safely travel with a German Shepherd too, if you plan ahead and follow through.
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"Dachshunds are ideal dogs for small children, as they are already stretched and pulled to such a length that a child cannot do much harm one way or another." - Robert Benchley
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