RV Living with Pets can be very difficult for both you and your furry friends. Or it can be the best thing ever! It all depends on how you prepare. Plus having some products with you to help make RV living with pets easier.
Bring Them Or Leave Them?
We’ve been traveling in our RV for 4 years now and for the first few years of travel, we did NOT travel with our pets. We chose to have a pet sitter during our travels that would stay with our animals at our home base. This was expensive and our pets didn’t always handle us going for long periods of time very well.
Then, we had about an 8-month period of time during 2020 when we became Full-time RVers. So we had no choice but to bring our furry friends with us in our RV.
It’s Easier To Bring Pets In The RV
We now again have a home base. But, since we’ve learned how to make travel with pets easier, we now always bring them with us. Plus, we use our home base as a vacation rental when we travel on an extended basis so the pets HAVE to come with us.
We had to figure out how to make it work to travel with our pets. And we kind of learned a few things that did and did not work in pretty quick order!
The Top 10 Tips & Products
We have a large Great Pyrenees dog – AKA, Alaska. We also have 2 cats. Now, Alaska is not exactly your typical “RV size” dog. So we frequently step over him to get to the bathroom at night or when moving around in the RV. Convenient? No. But, we love having him with us.
He’s also a great companion for our son, who really needs something consistent as we travel. RV life means things change a lot. The places change, campgrounds change, etc. Having Alaska along helps him to always have the same friend day in and day out in the midst of the constant change that RV Living brings.
So, here are our top 10 tips & products that we’ve found to make RV Living and Travel with pets possible.
Making Stops On Travel Days
Pet-friendly Stops. Find rest areas with a pet walking area, a grassy area, etc. Most of the truck stops we stop at don’t have the most friendly pet areas and we have to improvise. Or sometimes walk around a concrete parking lot. You’ll have to let us know if you’ve found some great pet-friendly stops for travel days (other than rest areas) in the comments below.
Pet Policies At RV Campgrounds
Check the campground’s pet policies before making a reservation. We’ve not run across a campground yet that doesn’t allow pets BUT there are some out there. Make sure there are no pet restrictions such as size and breed before you book. It’s also a good idea to keep a vaccination record on hand. Not that campgrounds would require this, but should you need emergency vet care, the vet will want a copy of these records.
Pet Monitors For RV
Use a Pet monitor. We have a few ways to monitor the temp of our RV, but we have found the pet monitor from Waggle does a fantastic job.
The Waggle RV Pet Temperature Monitor works via built-in Verizon 4G cellular data to monitor Temperature and alert you via App, Text & Email about any potentially unsafe conditions for your pet in an RV, Car, or Home. The best part is no Wi-Fi is needed since it’s using cellular data.
I can check the temp of the RV at any time with our GoVee temperature monitor but with Waggle I don’t need to worry about checking in. Waggle will send an alert if the temp is out of the ranges we set. It also sends an alert if the RV loses power. Since we can’t take Alaska with us everywhere we go and for sure are not going to take the two cats along when we go exploring, Waggle provides peace of mind. We know the environment in the RV is comfortable for all our furry friends.
Crates & Kennels In The RV
Foldable Kennel – Alaska is an opportunist (show Alaska with a sign around his neck – “I ate the trash” – So when we leave the RV for more than a few hours, we use a crate for him. He is a very low-energy dog and tends to sleep most of the day even when we are around. Having a crate that can fold up and be out of the way when not in use is perfect for RV Living.
- 【Dog crate Made of durable materials】: the dog crate Made of high Tensile-Strength wire gauge.The dog cage ideal for training and transporting well-behaved pets. Pet crate epoxy coating finish extends the life of the crate and provides resistance against rust, corrosion, and fading, even in the most extreme climates. Dog crate dog cage pet crate.
- 【Designed to safe and comfortable】: The pet cage have two large doors, one on the front and one on the side, are easy to open, close.Heavy duty securely lock with dual latches, providing a safe and secure environment for your pet.The dog cage designed to keep animals safe and comfortable. Pet kennel wire dog crate animal cage.
- 【Easy assembly】: This dog cage does not require any tool assembly, dog cage can be deployed directly. It only takes a few minutes. The pet cage divider can separate two pets in two spaces.Dog crate pet cage dog cage with divider.
Pet Fencing For RVs
Pet Fence – Speaking of Alaska, funny story. When we were camping in northern Wisconsin this summer, one day early in the morning, Alaska needed to go out after being inside with us all night. I was still in my PJ’s no glasses or contacts (I have distance vision issues).
Alaska saw some people sitting outside their camper and decided he wanted to say hi, Then he bolted for these folks enjoying their morning coffee. He would NOT come back when I called him (of course) and I was running around barefoot, blind in my PJs, no brushed teeth chasing a 105-pound white fur-ball. So, because I do NOT want a repeat of that, we have a pet fence we can set up around the RV. He is not one of the dogs who try to break down a fence and any sort of barrier serves as a great deterrent.
- 🐶【A win-win solution】The FXW Dog Playpen is designed to bring a win-win solution to you and your lovely dog. Different from a narrow enclosure cage or kennel, the FXW dog pen provides a spacious semi-open activity area specifically for your dog. Your dog will have fun in its safe and sturdy kingdom. Meanwhile, you can take a real break and be truly relaxed without worrying about your beloved pet. Fun, Relaxation and Well-being is the orientation of the FXW team.
- 🐶【Unlock your freedom, savor the moment】The stakes are designed with rounded ball tops to protect the dog's claws from injury. The rods are easily inserted into the ground for greater stability and rigidity, which won't collapse when the dog leans against them. Also, the automatic gravity-actioned locking mechanism will ensure you can open and close the door smoothly and reduces the chance of dogs unlocking by themselves. All of this is designed for absolute safety, so you can really relax.
- 🐶【Super easy to assemble】It won’t take you more than 5 minutes to assemble these portable dog fences as well as pack them away due to the rod-connected design. Meanwhile, panels can be added or removed freely to give you a fully flexible area and arrange the dog pen in any shape you need.
Easier Walks Around The RV Campground
Hands-Free Leash – I enjoy a cup of coffee in the morning (once I am fully dressed with my contacts in) and walking around the campground. Trying to carry my coffee AND have a leash in my hand means I need a 3rd hand when picking up the poo. Having a hands-free leash helps with being able to enjoy my coffee while walking the dog and still have a free hand for whatever I might need it for.
Spill Proof Water Bowl – we use this for both the cats and the dog. Even on travel days, this design keeps the water in the bowl and not all over the floor.
- NO MORE MESS: The Road Refresher keeps your pet's water clean and fresh with the unique shallow floating plate protecting the water base from dust, dirt, and debris. The floating disk rests on the surface of the base controlling the amount of water available for your pet to consume. This function keeps long ears and snouts dry and the area around the bowl clean and clear of drips, splashes, and slippery wet surfaces. Also great for the cat that likes to play with their watering bowl.
- SLOW AND STEADY: Fresh clean water from the pet bowl reservoir continuously flows up through the floating lick plate. This slow feeder dog bowl dispenses the ideal amount of water for your pet throughout the day. Greatly reduces the risk of choking by regulating intake - stopping speedy /gulping drinkers and the ability to splash, submerge face, keeping your pet hydrated without excess gulped air and messy facial drips.
- ON-THE-GO: Includes optional velcro fasteners for your own attachment - Secures base of the bowl to just about any surface! The unique no-skid base, no-slopper, dripless combination make it the smart item for use in cars, RV's, boats, and any other outside, recreational / travel activity such as camping, patios & poolside.
Flea & Tick Collar – traveling from place to place means different types of fleas and ticks. You want to make sure your furry friend is protected. And that you don’t have any hitchhikers that get brought back in your RV on your pet.
Know where the closest emergency vet is located. So you know where to get help if you need it. VCA has a network of vet hospitals in 46 states and 5 Canadian provinces. They can be a good option for emergency vet care.
Research Before You Travel
Know before you go. Many national parks only allow dogs in the visitor center or parking lot areas but NOT on the trails. You can use the NPS app or website to check the rules at national parks for dogs. State parks or other areas can have similar rules. There is a great website called Bring Fido that will help you find dog-friendly locations.
RV Life is Better With Pets!
There are SO many great Benefits of Traveling with pets. They can be conversation starters for one. Every time we take Alaska for a walk in the campground we are always asked about him. He’s a big boy and people are naturally curious about traveling with such a big dog.
Having a pet along gets you out and moving. You will find yourself taking walks around the campground more often, getting movement in during travel day stops. And let’s not forget the companionship aspect. Even though RV Life with pets can take some extra effort, we totally think it’s worth it.
Be sure to check out our partner’s page for great deals for RVers. And then let us know your thoughts or tips on RV travel with pets in the comments!
We’re close to buying a 24’ class C. We’ve been watching you on YouTube. We have a single cat. What do you do for your litter box? Thanks!
Hey there, we use this litter box. You can find it on Amazon: https://amzn.to/3gLyNik
Don’t I know Alaska from the Our Gentle Giants facebook group??? I’m camping with my GP as well. People always laugh when they see this 120lb big fluffy white dog come out of my tiny camper. Don’t forget to have identification ALL over your pets.
Good tip! Yes, we joke around with other campers that Alaska isn’t your typical “RV Size” dog.