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Road Trip!

Five Things to Remember When Traveling with your Boxer this Summer


Summer Solstice just passed, the temperature gauge is holding in the low 80s and school is out for the year – it’s official, it’s summer! Time to hit the beach for a couple days, take a couple of days to explore Mount Hood or set off for California, Arizona, Colorado and beyond. Where ever your destination, summer time usually means… Road Trip!

As a NWBR family that means our 3-year old Pepper is in tow. Luckily for her, her bag is packed and she is an experienced traveler, having taken many weekend trips to the Coast with us and having taken many 3-4 week trips to Southern California.

To make the Road Trips more fun, and safer for your four-legged family member, there are couple things to keep in mind…

* The To Go Bag. Just a couple of months after adopting our boxer, we headed to Southern California with her, and as traveling is fairly common thing for us, we bought Pepper her own suitcase! We purchased a Store-N-Feed To Go from that provides the raised food/water station she is used to, as well as storage space for one week of food, water for a couple of days and her assorted treats and toys. We like to have things she is familiar with when going to strange places to help keep her at ease. We always restock it, so she is always ready for the next adventure!

* Your Papers Please? Yes, not only do the two-legged require documentation, but so do the four-legged. When traveling between states or other countries, make sure you check out what paperwork the state requires. Many states require proof of current vaccinations and ownership (though we’ve never been asked to provide the documentation) and as it is the state’s it is their right to ask for the paperwork, they can legally take and hold the dog if you do not have the right paperwork. (We keep Pepper’s in her To Go bag so we don’t have to think about it.)

* Water, water, water! With summer temperatures rising, our pooches need extra hydration just like we do. The temperature in cars can get really hot, we’ve all seen the warnings, but aside from the drastic, dogs can get dehydrated from the subtle heat or constant air conditioning in cars as well. We carry a collapsible water bowl in the car for Pepper with extra water bottles just for her. And while non-dog lovers (what?) may not always appreciate it, our boxer knows what drinking fountains are for and will patiently wait by one at rest stops when she needs an extra sip. Rest stops are a good place to rehydrate, as well as provide a good pit stop – which are very much appreciated as well!

* These days traveling with your dog on the West Coast seems fairly easy with lots and lots of choices for lodging. If you are looking for a place hotel or motel for the night, try sites like or or use filters on sites like to find places that will welcome your pooch; AAAalso has a good guide on where dogs are welcome. There are also some hot spots, like in Mendocino County that cater to dog owners. Before bedding down however, remember that after a long ride in the car, your four-legged friend needs to stretch his/her legs as much as you do, so a nice walk or stop at a local dog park before bedding down would be much appreciated!* And lastly, while we hope to never be separated from our canines, having your dog micro-chipped, or having proper ID tags, with a cell phone number on them for while you’re traveling helps make sure if you do get separated, you can find your way back to each other. Safe travels!

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