Packing List for Traveling with Your Dog

If you’ve made up your mind about taking your dog along on your next trip, getting a dog packing list ready is the most important task for you to consider. Being prepared will make your next adventure more enjoyable and memorable with your furry best friend. 

Traveling with Your Dog

Going on an adventure with your dog can seem tricky. But as long as you plan ahead and make sure that, aside from your own essentials, you also pack a dedicated dog bag for your pet’s essentials, a trip with your dog is 100% doable.

After all, the best travel partner has four legs and a fluffy butt. 

Many dog owners become overwhelmed when getting a dog packing list ready, especially if it is the first time they’re traveling with their dog.

You’ll feel like bringing everything you possibly can, but don’t. Overpacking can be just as bad as underpacking. It’ll only make you feel overwhelmed and scattered. 

To make your job easier, here’s a handy guide to what to put in a dog travel bag.

Tummy Essentials

Tummy Essentials 

Dogs thrive on routine. It’s important to ensure that your trip does not affect your dog’s usual routine, especially its meal times. 

If it’s a road trip, bring enough dog food to sustain your furry companion throughout the trip till you reach your destination. Keep your dog hydrated by stopping every 2-3 hours and letting your dog have its fill of water.

While you can also purchase fresh supplies of dog food once you reach your destination, it’s better to prepare for at least three meals, measured in advance, that you can provide readily.

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Health Essentials

Health Essentials

This is a non-negotiable item on your dog packing list. If your pup is on any medication or requires supplements, make sure you’ve packed all your dog’s daily dose of supplements. A trip is no reason for your dog to miss its regular dose of vitamins and medications. Check that you have the adequate amount for the duration of your trip.

You want your dog to be at its healthiest when traveling, so it can also make the most of the trip and enjoy the adventure with you.

Vaccination Cards and Proofs of Identity

Vaccination Cards and Proofs of Identity

Regardless of whether you are traveling by air, land, or sea, keep a folder with all your dog’s necessary documentation. Here are the important documents that must have with you: 

● A clearance or certification from your pet’s veterinarian that is signed and dated within ten days as proof that your dog is healthy and fit for travel. 

● Include your dog’s immunization records as some states or countries may specifically look for it.

● Keep a copy of your dog’s microchip number as well as the contact information of the company monitoring the chip. 

● Having the latest picture of your dog can come in handy, too, should there be any emergencies or untoward situations.


Toys and Chews

Toys and Chews

Dogs are essentially toddlers, so a shorter attention span is to be expected. Especially if you’re planning to take it on a long journey. 

So, what do you do with a bored and restless dog? Keep it entertained with its favorite toys. Familiar toys are highly recommended because it brings them comfort when they see and play with something they are accustomed to.

Toys are not just treats; they can be a source of comfort and a healthy tool to ensure their overall well-being. 

For example, if your travel requires your dog to be in some form of transportation, such as a plane ride, the movement of your dog is limited. In such cases, toys can help them fight off anxiety or boredom.

A few minutes of distraction is all you need to keep your dog settled until your next stopover.


Carrier and Harness

Carrier and Harness

When trying to figure out what should I bring when traveling with my dog, you must remember that different means of travel will require different forms of pet carriers. 

For example, your dog’s usual pet carrier may not be applicable if traveling by air. It’s important to check the respective airline’s guidelines and get an appropriate dog carrier that meets the requirements.

Apart from the carrier, you should also have your dog’s leash on hand, and bring an extra one. Keep your dog on a leash even during short stopovers, and plan ahead so you can have sufficient time to walk around and explore the surroundings.

With a leash, you can keep your dog from sniffing and getting exposed to the droppings of other animals, thus reducing the risk of exposing your dog to the dreaded Parvo. 


Sanitation and Comfort

Sanitation and Comfort 

When traveling, your dog’s hygiene should be a priority. You want your dog to be as clean as possible throughout the duration of the trip.

Keep a stack of poop bags, potty pads, wet wipes, and other cleaning supplies in a separate bag for quick access.

These are all essentials to keep your dog and your car clean. You also need to make sure you clean up after your dog whenever you have a stopover. 

Toss in some old towels or blankets that you can use as temporary bedding so you can settle your dog inside the car. It will not only protect your car’s upholstery but also help make your dog more comfortable.

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Miscellaneous Supplies

Miscellaneous Supplies

Depending on your destination, your packing essentials will change. Your packing list for beach vacation with dogs will be very different from one for going hiking or camping. 

For example, if you go canoeing or boating, you will need to pack a dog life vest, especially if your dog is not a strong swimmer. 

Or if you’re going camping and your best bud falls under the hiking dog breeds, you might need to carry booties or even a jacket if you’ll be camping in the mountains.

When the weather forecast advises you of some rain, pack your dog's raincoat or jacket as well as rain boots. 

Another gear you need to consider getting is a dog collar with GPS. You don’t want any nasty surprises during your trip. With a GPS collar, you will always have a way to track your dog.




Hopefully, you now have the tools to plan your next adventure with your dog like a pro! You can even print out this checklist so you can refer to it to check that you have all the supplies you need for a hassle-free trip.


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