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Dog-Friendly Road Trip Planner

If you’re planning to cover some miles on the road this year, chances are you’ve thought about bringing along your four-legged best friend. As a pet owner, you know that planning a road trip with Fido can take a bit of forethought — how they handle being in the car, where you’ll stop for potty breaks and what sites are dog-friendly are all aspects that need to be considered if you both want to have a good time.

Maybe you and your pup are new to the road trip scene and still have a bit of practice to go before you can set out on a long adventure. Either way, we’ve got you covered. We looked at the most dog-friendly cities around the country and put together 12 road trip routes based on proximity to these locations. We then looked at routes where there’s plenty for you and your pup  to do, highlighting stops like dog beaches, must-see hikes, dog-friendly state parks and much more. Whether you live in Los Angeles or Atlanta, you’re bound to find a trip that speaks to you.

Best of all, you can filter these road trips based on how your dog handles being on the road. We know that some dogs are expert co-pilots while others are still working on it, so this collection of trips is also split up by duration:

  • Short trips — one to four hours
  • Long trips — six hours or more

Of course, this is not an exhaustive list, but these routes are a great way to start planning your adventures for the year ahead. Because there are numerous resources that focus specifically on pet-friendly hotels, we decided to stick to what we know best — mapping out road trip routes and attractions that are bound to show you and your pup a good time. If you need more information on where you and your fur child can rest, we suggest checking out sites like Bring Fido.

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Once you’re ready to hit the road with Fido, it’s important to brush up on road trip best practices and safety precautions, so that you and your fur child have a safe trip. You might be surprised by how many people drive distracted with their dog in the car.If you have a nervous traveler or just a newbie on your hands, use these tips to make sure you both have a smooth road trip.

  1. Take a trial run — Start by taking short 15- to 30-minute excursions around town before you build up to one of these longer trips. In doing so, be sure to include lots of positive reinforcement with each drive.
  2. Take advantage of rest stops — These routes were all designed with dog-friendly pit stops in mind, but if you find your pup is a bit restless, don’t hesitate to pull over and stretch your legs or practice some road trip yoga.
  3. Stick to a regular feeding schedule — This can be tough to do if you’re trying to cover a lot of ground, but we recommend taking breaks to accomodate for your dog’s feeding and potty schedule.
  4. Travel with medication if necessary — Just like humans, some dogs suffer from car sickness. If this is your pup, consider talking to your vet about motion sickness medication or something to help ease their nerves and pack it with the rest of your dog’s gear.

Traveling With Your Dog During the Coronavirus Outbreak

With the novel coronavirus now a global pandemic, many dog owners are not only worried about their own health but also that of their pets. And with more pups in face masks on social media, you’re not alone in wondering, can my dog get the coronavirus?

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), there is currently “no evidence that companion animals/pets such as dogs or cats can be infected with the new coronavirus. At least for the time being.

How to Protect Your Dog From the Coronavirus

That said, there are some general hygiene rules you should follow, whether you’re setting off on a road trip with your dog or you’re staying at home.

  • Wash your hand with soap and water after contact with any animal.
  • Wipe your pet’s paws with paw cleaner or paw wipes before they jump in the car or come back in the house.
  • Follow the CDC’s recommendations for traveling with pets
  • Make an appointment with your vet before hitting the road

Once you’ve covered your bases on road trip preparation, it’s time to hit the road. If you need a little more room in your road trip vehicle or just don’t want to put the miles on your own car with one of those longer routes, CarRentals has you covered with an extensive list of rental vehicles no matter where you’re located.