If there’s one thing we’ve seen with RV’ers, it’s that they like pets. Dogs and cats are the usual, but we’ve seen people with birds and other exotic animals. I wouldn’t be surprised if half of the RV’ers out there travel with pets. Since so many people travel with pets we thought it would be a good idea to show everyone how we do it.
Laura worked as a registered veterinary technician for six and a half years, five of them in an 24 hour animal hospital emergency room. Sadly, she had seen the aftermath of pets not being secured in vehicles far too many times. That’s why we’re religious about seat belting the dogs in whenever the vehicle is moving. To do this we put harnesses on the dogs, and the seat belt attachment clips onto the harness with a D-ring. Not only does this system protect them, but it also prevents them from trying to jump into the drivers lap and cause a wreck. It’s a win-win.
To get the dogs to and from the truck we use high visibility, reflective, retractable leashes in conjunction with Gentle Leader nose harnesses. To actually get Bullet into the truck we had to make more special arrangements. The truck isn’t lifted, yet it still has pretty decent ground clearance. To add to the height problem, the running boards are rounded chrome tubes with just a plastic step beside each door. Try telling an excited Labrador to only use the step and not the slick chrome, it won’t go well. Kimber is small enough, and calm enough, that we can just lift her into her seat. However, with Bullet we thought it best to get him steps that he climb up and down with. Since Lab’s have so many knee problems (knowledge courtesy of being married to a vet tech) providing him a way out of the truck instead of jumping was important, those surgeries are expensive.
It’s also important to us to keep our dogs as comfortable as possible while driving. Being in a moving vehicle freaks Bullet out enough already, we don’t want him to be uncomfortable as well. That’s why we put his bed, security blanket, pillow, and stuffed squeaky cow in there with him. Having the things he’s used to sleeping with, and on, just helps keep him calmer.