Traveling with the "Monster"

Discussion in 'Labrador Chat' started by Walker, Jan 3, 2017.

  1. Walker

    Walker Registered Users

    Jun 3, 2016
    Didn't see another forum where this would fit. If I've posted it in an incorrect location, please feel free to move it.

    Wife and I are counting down the days until we both fully retire. We have a few short, two to three day trips to take. Many hotels limit dog size to 25 lbs. Abby is over 60 lbs.

    I've seen a lot of hunters who have the fancy dog crates/boxes/houses in the back of their trucks. I have a pickup truck so something like that is an option. For a dog who has spent all her time inside at night with us... uncrated... would it be cruel to put her in a truck box at night while on the road? Would one rent/borrow a box and use it in the driveway a few times to see if she could tolerate it?

    What other options are there? The past few times we've traveled overnight, we board her at a local doggie hotel. That's $40/day and adds significant cost to our trip. Abby travels well in the backseat of my truck. She rides a lot with me and we've gone fairly long distances, only to return home at night. You never know she's in the backseat. She rides delightfully well. It's the overnight issue at hotels that present a problem.

    Open to comments suggestions as to how other owners would handle this.
  2. Emily_BabbelHund

    Emily_BabbelHund Longest on the Forum without an actual dog Forum Supporter

    Jul 31, 2016
    Labratouring in the UK (currently N. Somerset)
    I traveled with Brogan constantly (as in 100% living out of a suitcase) for six years. He was a 32kg Rottweiler mix (that's him in my avatar). He was a certified service dog which made air travel easier as well as enabling me to take him into most museums. For lodging, however, it didn't make any difference whatsoever. I learned how to find dog-friendly lodging at a reasonable price AND that accepted not only large dogs but didn't fly into a tizzy over the whole Rottweiler thing. You need to plan well in advance and also accept that your options are about 10% of the selection available to dog free travellers. Also state the size (weight, height) of your dog as well as that he is a shedding breed when you make your reservation and keep your written confirmation from the lodging so they can't turn you away when you show up. But honestly, it is quite a small price to pay for the wonderful experience of having a dog travel buddy.

    Except for the odd 1-2 night stays, my recommendation is to take hotels off your list entirely. Vacation rental sites, like AirBNB, Homeaway, etc. allow you to search on dog-friendly criteria and as most are privately owned, they are much more flexible. Plus much better in terms of quality-price. If you must do a short hotel stay, to make life easier for you, learn which hotel chains (such as Ibis/Mercure) are ALWAYS dog friendly, no matter the location. Sites like also allow you to search on dog-friendly. A tip for knowing which ones will accept larger dogs: places that say "Pets allowed without an additional fee" are usually places that truly love dogs of all sizes, vs. ones that list as "Additional charge may apply for pets" where they are just trying to check the boxes.

    I personally would not feel comfortable leaving my dog overnight alone in my car, but I am admittedly pretty paranoid about that sort of thing. And of course location would play a huge role. Maybe others have done this and will share their experiences.

    I'm a huge advocate of traveling with your dog and as I mentioned have years and years of experience. Not to mention that it's something I'll happily natter on about for ages with little or no prompting. Which is my way of saying that if I can help provide further info (best websites, locations, etc.) just let me know. You have some wonderful adventures ahead! :)

    Here's Brogan thoroughly enjoying his first trip to Rome:
    Screenshot 2017-01-03 06.48.15.png
    Walker likes this.
  3. Naya

    Naya Supporting Member Forum Supporter

    Sep 14, 2013
    Bristol, UK
    I personally wouldn't leave my dog in the car in a crate overnight. Recently I was looking at visiting my family in Jersey (Channel Islands) and we looking at going via the ferry and take our camper van (which we brought as a van and converted it to be able to take Harley with us wherever we went). Anyway, the ferry would take approx 8-10 hours and when I looked into it the ferry company stated that dogs must be kept in the vehicle at all times, for the whole journey and you are not allowed to go to your vehicle to check on them! I have now ruled out going by ferry because of this.
  4. snowbunny

    snowbunny Administrator Forum Supporter

    Aug 27, 2014
    Andorra and Spain
    I wouldn't sleep! I'd be constantly worrying that the dogs were too hot, too cold, being stolen, the car would be hit...

    When I drove to the UK the other week, I had the dogs in a crate in the back of the van I was in. I stopped to have a sleep, and got in the back with them, but I was still worried every time someone drove past. That's with them in the same vehicle as me.

    Nope, they are in the room with me or we don't stay there.
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2017
    Emily_BabbelHund likes this.
  5. xxryu139xx

    xxryu139xx Registered Users

    Aug 17, 2016
    Union, NJ
    Not to mention here in the US, someone will notice your poor dog inside the vehicle and your window will be broken in and you'll be charged with animal cruelty.

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