Camping with dogs - planning and preparation
The best holiday doesn't start at your destination, but at home. The better prepared you are, the less can go wrong. First and foremost is the question of whether your dog already knows and tolerates driving. If this is the case? Great! Then it's a question of how to store it safely while driving. Because apart from your four-legged friend, you will also have a lot of luggage and equipment with you. Both driving with a special safety belt and in a transport box should be practiced with your furry friend in good time before the holiday.
If you are traveling in a mobile home, find a suitable place for your dog here as well. According to the law, it is considered cargo and must be secured accordingly. Whether you choose a harness or a box for this depends on your dog and the spatial conditions.
Is your dog stressed or scared while driving?
Then it's time to practice here too. Throwing him in at the deep end is not a good idea and can cause big problems. If your dog becomes nauseous while driving, seek advice from your veterinarian. There are motion sickness remedies that can help him.
Choosing the campsite
Not every campsite is happy to have animal guests. Although some describe themselves as dog-friendly, in reality you are confronted with umpteen restrictions and prohibitions. You should therefore inquire in advance whether your dog is welcome. It is helpful to look at the reviews of other guests on the Internet. Also take a look at the site's website. Some offer great additional offers such as agility, dog showers or fenced off opportunities to run free.
Also find out if there are enough options to walk your dog. And make sure there are no fees charged for your dog at the campsite. The prices and services can vary greatly.
Camping at home or abroad
A good preparation also applies to the required papers and vaccinations. Check with the campsite if specific proof is required. When staying in another European country, your dog must be vaccinated against rabies and microchipped. Be sure to register the chip number with Tasso e.V. This is the only way your dog can be assigned to you if you lose it and it is found.
In southern Europe you also have to think about prophylaxis to protect your dog from sandflies and other insect bites. Again, I recommend checking with your vet to choose the right remedy.
One country where I have felt very welcome with my dogs is Spain. However, I advise you to avoid August. This is the peak travel month for locals and it can also be unbearably hot. It is significantly emptier and the temperatures more pleasant in spring or autumn. Which brings me to the next point: heat and cold.
Accommodation for your dog while camping
Both cold and heat can be uncomfortable and even dangerous for your four-legged friend. He too can get sunstroke or catch a cold when the temperature is cool. So let him have a say in where he wants to be. A robust outdoor blanket protects your dog from the cold ground. If it is particularly warm, a special cooling blanket can provide relief. But give your animal the opportunity to lie down somewhere else if it gets too cold.
In addition to an appropriate blanket, a portable box or a privacy screen can also be useful. In this way, you can shield anxious dogs or those that tend to bark a bit from the many unfamiliar stimuli.
To leash your dog outside, mooring pegs or ground hooks that are stuck into the ground are suitable
Checklist for camping with dogs
So that you think of everything, I have put together a checklist for you with the most important things.
Up to four weeks before:
- Inform yourself about the entry requirements of your destination country
- Check your animal liability insurance
- Check vaccinations and pet passport
- Talk to your vet about preventive measures and deworming.
- These may be required shortly before departure, depending on the country.
- If necessary, practice driving and get your dog used to the transport box/
- Securing Belt
Accessories for your dog
- Collar or harness and leash
- Toys and treats
- enough dog food and can opener for canned food
- First aid kit and medication your dog needs
- Proof of animal liability insurance
- Pet passport and a health certificate (if required)
- Muzzle (mandatory in some countries)
- Poop Bag
- Dog blanket/basket
- old towels to dry off
- Grooming accessories such as a brush or claw clippers
- Protection from the sun/cold (special blanket, awning, dog coat, etc.)
- An attachment for the line (e.g. ground hook, mooring stake)
Camping with dogs - top or flop?
Camping with dogs is something wonderful for me. We are much closer than in an apartment and spend a lot of time together. It's important to take it easy. Give your dog a chance to get used to the new sounds and impressions. Give it a rest from time to time and provide an undisturbed retreat where it can recover. This will definitely make your camping holiday together unforgettable.