Most dog owners have experienced that last-minute change in plans when a boarding facility or dog-sitter suddenly couldn’t care for their pooch just as they were ready to head out of town. About the only two options available are to cancel the trip or take your canine companion along. While not always convenient, taking your dog along is doable and can provide good company you might otherwise be without. Here are three tips that will make traveling with your furry friend safe and easy for both of you.

Car Seat Cover

This dog seat cover is made of heavy-duty quilted material that is scratch proof and waterproof. VIEWPETS

Whether a trip to the nearby convenience store to get gas or a journey halfway across the state to visit family or friends, some people prefer to let their dogs ride comfortably in the back seat of their vehicle. What those people don’t prefer, however, is the mess that dogs can leave on the seat, even if they don’t have an “accident.” A good pet car seat cover is the perfect solution to that problem, and many manufacturers offer them. Two main types are bench seat covers and hammock seat covers. Bench seat covers cover both the back and seat of the vehicle’s backseat. For more protection, hammock-style seat covers protect the rear bench seat, footwells, and back of the front seats. Whichever type you pick, make sure it is durable and waterproof.

Dog Crate

This wire crate easily folds flat for transport and storage. New World Crates

Dog crates are great for extended trips or even for just driving around town if you prefer to have your dog confined. Most are either wire crates or ones made from hard plastic-type materials. Both have advantages. Plastic crates are great for travel and comfortable for your dog, but they are somewhat bulky and hard to move in and out of homes and vehicles. Wire crates—which can be easily folded down to nearly flat—are easier to handle as far as loading and unloading but tend to be not quite as sturdy as hard plastic crates. For someone who is going to travel with their dog a lot, plastic crates are usually the best bet.


This tangle-free retractable leash is very easy to store compared to conventional dog leashes. TUG

While putting a leash on this list might seem silly, you won’t think so if you’re ever caught without one. Even if you are just going a few miles from home, things can happen that will make you need to get your dog out of the car. A leash is the perfect tool for keeping him safe and under control while doing so. Consider a breakdown that causes you to call your auto club to come get your car. A leash is going to be extremely handy for getting your dog from your vehicle into another. For extended travel, many dogs will need to get out to “do their business” after a few hours. No leash means no control and, inevitably, less safety. Be smart—take a leash.