Motorhome Travel with Pets – Tips and Advice
One of the great joys of a motorhome holiday is the ability to take the whole family – including any furry friends you might have!
Camping holidays naturally lend themselves to dog owners, getting into the great outdoors and exploring with your pooch by your side.
There’s a lot to think about before you hit the road, however, especially with regard to the journey ahead to your chosen campsite.
Here, we’ll run through some key considerations to ensure that your four-legged family member remains safe and happy throughout your time away.
Can dogs travel in a motorhome?
Yes, they can. Rule 57 of the Highway Code sets out the rules for having dogs – or any other pet – in a vehicle with you while on the road.
When in a vehicle make sure dogs or other animals are suitably restrained so they cannot distract you while you are driving, or injure you, or themselves, if you stop quickly.
There are many methods of keeping your pet restrained while in your motorhome that will keep them – and you – safe.
How to keep a dog safe in a motorhome when travelling
Crates and pet carriers are the most secure way of travelling with a dog in your motorhome.
However, a key factor in keeping your pet happy during the journey is ensuring that they are completely comfortable. And if you already know that they’re unsettled when spending long periods in a crate, then it’s not wise to subject them to it here.
It’s also advisable to take your pooch for a walk before setting off in your motorhome. This gives your dog a chance to relieve itself ahead of the trip as well as burn up some energy, which might result in a handy nap while you’re driving.
If you travel often with your dog in your car, you’ll no doubt have processes in place to make sure journeys are stress-free for both of you, so don’t stray too far from these in the motorhome. If your dog is a good car passenger, that should translate easily to the roomier surrounds of a campervan or motorhome.
Of course, if you are venturing quite far afield, leave some water in reach (spill-free travel bowls are available) and leave some toys out to pass the time, as well as factoring in some extra stops to allow your dog a stretch of the legs.
Travelling in a motorhome with dogs checklist
If it’s your first time travelling with dogs in a motorhome, here’s a handy rundown of the essentials to remember.
- Water/food bowls: Options that can be fixed in place can help to avoid messy scenes when you come to a stop. Putting a plastic mat underneath also helps.
- Towels: If you’re heading out for regular hikes, your furry friend will often return to your dwelling a bit mucky. Be sure to bring things to help with cleaning – collapsible buckets are good for cleaning paws without traipsing through the camper to your shower.
- Disinfectant spray/wipes: Dogs love to get their noses everywhere and those regular trips out of the camper could bring back bugs and other things that could make them poorly. Regularly cleaning surfaces and the floor should keep illness at bay.
- Medication and insurance documents: If something untoward does happen, it’s good to have everything with you in case you need to visit a vet in an emergency.
- Brushes: If you live near green spaces, you’ll know how easy it is for dogs to pick up things like ticks when walking through plant life. Regular brushing can keep them in the clear, while tick hooks are also worth having just in case.
- Leads/harnesses/poo bags: All the things you’d need for walkies when at home.
- A separate bed: It may be an idea to bring another bed to sleep in, so your pet does not associate its travel bed/crate with the wrong stage of the holiday.
When you get to the campsite
As soon as you arrive, it’s worth taking your dog for a short walk around the campsite, so it gets familiar with its surroundings and any other animals that might be present.
This can also help in the long term as your pooch may be less likely to want to go exploring – and potentially get lost – if it is already confident that it knows the immediate area.
Of course, this is also a chance to get some exercise in and have a tinkle, too! But do ensure that you clean up after your dog appropriately.
Being mindful of your fellow campers is crucial to maintaining harmony on-site. This initial recce can also help you determine any neighbours that aren’t canine fans and avoid potentially awkward moments further down the line.
Keeping a close watch on your pets while on-site is also essential. Make sure they’re never left unattended – even if they are secured, they could injure themselves or damage something close by while your attention is elsewhere. Dogs enjoy the great outdoors too. It’s worth investing in a dog stake and leash that will ensure your pooch can be safely secured outside your motorhome with you.
Motorhome travel with dogs abroad
If you’re planning a motorhome trip on the continent, that doesn’t mean your pet has to stay behind. You might be looking at motorhome travelling with dogs to Spain, France or any other popular destination.
The government has clear and detailed advice on everything you will need to take your pooch abroad – and several of the regulations apply to travelling to Northern Ireland too, an increasingly popular destination for staycationers.
Your pet will need:
- A microchip
- A rabies vaccination
- An animal health certificate or pet passport
You may also need to give your pet further treatments if travelling to certain areas – be sure to check government guidance before you go to know exactly what is required.
Get peace of mind when travelling with a dog in a motorhome
If you’re away travelling with dogs in a motorhome, you’ll want to concentrate on having fun with your four-legged friend – not your vehicle.
On the off-chance that something goes wrong, it’s good to know that you’re fully covered and it pays to come to the experts.
Share this article
We’re a family run business with over 30 years' experience in the provision of specialist motorhome and campervan insurance. With a wealth of awards under our belt, we pride ourselves on providing a friendly and professional service, offering you the most comprehensive cover money can buy - starting from just £220!
We’re a family run business with over 30 years' experience in the provision of specialist motorhome and campervan insurance. With a wealth of awards under our belt, we pride ourselves on providing a friendly and professional service, offering you the most comprehensive cover money can buy - starting from just £200!