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Old 06-02-2014, 07:13 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Long road trips with a GSD?

Okay so for background info, me and my boyfriend currently live in South Carolina. He is originally from Michigan. This summer we will be going on a trip there and want to bring our dog Bärli. Except he drives a mustang. The drive is around 11 hours at least. How is the best way to take the dog? Or should we just leave her at home with my parents? Any information is welcome and appreciated. It's a tough drive, even on me so I want to be prepared for her.
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Old 06-02-2014, 07:21 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Okay so for background info, me and my boyfriend currently live in South Carolina. He is originally from Michigan. This summer we will be going on a trip there and want to bring our dog Bärli. Except he drives a mustang. The drive is around 11 hours at least. How is the best way to take the dog? Or should we just leave her at home with my parents? Any information is welcome and appreciated. It's a tough drive, even on me so I want to be prepared for her.
Gus has traveled everywhere with us.. we live north of Toronto and he has gone as far as Boston so far with no problems. We took him for walks and regular potty breaks along the way. We feed raw and since you can't bring over the border we simply bought fresh chicken in the U.S where it's cheap anyways.

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Old 06-02-2014, 08:30 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I had done really long cross country trips with my dog as well (i.e. multi-day cross-country, MI to CA and back), although we had an SUV, where we carved out large portion of the rear compartment for her crate and shoved her comfy bed in there for her. She probably had more legroom than us humans and I think she comfortably slept through a lot of the drive. As the previous poster mentioned, regular potty breaks are helpful. I took my dog out for a quick trot, potty break, and a brief drink of water every time we stopped at a rest area or gas station. I found wet foods (canned if you have to) works better than dry kibble and was much easier for my dog to digest and helped to keep her better hydrated.

Assuming your dog doesn't get car sick easily and that you're not planning on piling the backseat with luggage, I think the dog should be pretty comfortable if she has most of the bench to herself and the 11 hours should fly by pretty quick. Don't forget to bring along your dog's medical records/vaccination record along with you just in case.
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Old 06-02-2014, 09:02 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Jedda and I frequently do a 10 hour drive (one way), and I have a 2-door Scion with a pretty small back seat. I put stuff in the space between the bench and the front seats so that it's level, and put her crate pad back there. It gives her about another foot and a half width to get comfortable compared to just the back seat. I have 3 regular stops I make, and luckily she's been perfect in the car since day one and the 9 hour drive home from the breeder! Sometimes she'll chew on a bully stick, but mostly she sleeps or looks out the window. And I agree with the previous post, I feed wet food and mashed sweet potato on the trip just to keep everything normal. Good luck and have fun!
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Old 06-02-2014, 09:08 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Thanks for the tips everyone! We thought about flying her up but felt it might be more dangerous due to the heat etc. I hope she likes Michigan! And cows since they have around 5000
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Old 06-02-2014, 09:57 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Michigan is great, we live in Ohio but some parts of the Upper are a good 9-10 hour drive for us. We give Tess a Kong filled with peanut butter on some of the longer road trips, and breaks about every 200 miles.
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Old 06-03-2014, 12:07 PM   #7 (permalink)
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A couple things I thought of: Be sure she is leashed when you stop before you take her out of the car. I would offer her water every time you stop, but don't put it in her crate, as she will just spill it.
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Old 06-03-2014, 12:23 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by faileh View Post
Okay so for background info, me and my boyfriend currently live in South Carolina. He is originally from Michigan. This summer we will be going on a trip there and want to bring our dog Bärli. Except he drives a mustang. The drive is around 11 hours at least. How is the best way to take the dog? Or should we just leave her at home with my parents? Any information is welcome and appreciated. It's a tough drive, even on me so I want to be prepared for her.
Where about in SC? I just made a 13hr trip last week, and a 9 hour trip last month with both mine. I prefer to travel at night... less traffic, dogs sleep the entire time (though they'll sleep during the day too)
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Old 06-03-2014, 12:53 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I drove from Florida Keys to Michigan a couple years ago with Raina. I rented a van so she had lots of room for a pad to sleep on and I could take her crate and coolers and everything I needed. It is going to be a bit more crowded for you but I would suggest piling up stuff on the floor to make it even with the back seat and have more room for her to stretch out. I traveled three 9 hour days on the way up and she slept most of the time but we were on a short schedule and had to be there on a certain day. On the way back we traveled only 6 hours a day and took out time to explore every place we stopped. I always take water from home when traveling and when that runs out use bottled water to avoid upset stomachs. I also always take canned pumpkin when I travel, along with Pepto Bismol, and Benedryl. Be sure to take your dogs records and make sure the microchip info includes your cell phone so just in case anything happens they can reach you. If you don't have her chipped take along some really good pictures of her so if she gets lost you can post pictures in the area. Always fasten the leash before opening the door and give her a potty break at least every two hours or so. It also gets you out and gives you a chance to stretch and stay alert. I take antlers for chewing in the car as they never make a mess. Mostly, have fun and enjoy all the new places and smells with her.
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Old 06-03-2014, 01:19 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Like pyratemom said.

We regularly travel South Florida to Michigan with Traveler, our GSD. That's why we named him Traveler- he goes everywhere. He was 6 months old on the first trip. He's 7 now. We never crated him. We have an SUV but he always stays in the back seat and he slept 95% of the time. He only wakes up when he hears or feels the car slow down going into rest stops. I'm not sure why he never ventures into the back of the SUV-we have even made room for him to move around back there butI guess being by us was good enough.

We always make sure to bring water and food from home and take his favorite toy and blanket.

Please pick up after your pup. There are so many places that don't allow dogs and it's because of this.
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