Traveling with your Fur Babies — Life with the Hawleys

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Happy Tuesday y'all! As y'all know, I'm on vacation, and I thought it would be fun to have some of my favorite bloggers guest post for me about traveling while I'm away from the blog. Today, one of my BFF (otherwise known as my soul sister) Darby is sharing about traveling with four-legged babies! I promise you'll love all her posts, so head over to her blog after reading these helpful tips!


Morning Sowell readers!!!!! I’m Darby from Life with the Hawleys!  Joy must really trust me to give me full reign of her blog, right?! No seriously, I’m super honored to be visiting with y’all today while Mrs. Sowell is enjoying her vacay with her hubby.  Sticking with the traveling theme though, today I wanted to share how I travel with my pups



Last summer my Mr. and I took a road trip back home from Houston to the east coast (see the trip here).  I said I would never make this road trip again after moving here but NEVER SAY NEVER friends!  Our good friend was getting married so we decided to take a 28 hour drive with two dogs (WE ARE NOT ALWAYS THIS CRA CRA!).  I was dreading this trip, but it turned out to be such a wonderful memory and we look forward to more long road trips with our fur babies.  There were several things we did to ensure that we didn’t pull our hair out on this trip:

Paw PrintPack for Entertainment- Just like traveling with children, purchase some new toys to give to your furbaby throughout the trip every few hours. This will keep them entertained.  And no, I refuse to answer how much I spent on my pups for car entertainment.  And yes, I know they’re spoiled lol

Dog toys

           New toys for the hotel room are great too, so they don’t explore their new "house" too much.


Paw PrintTire Before Hitting the Tires- Before hitting the road, have a nice exhausting play session with your pup; get them tired. Since we broke our trip up in a few days, before hitting the road each day we spent some time playing catch or visiting a dog park before resuming our trek. This prevented them from bouncing of the windows in the car.

Playing ball with my babies before hitting the road in Savannah, GA.


Before we hit the highway, I looked back & saw these sweet faces in the back seat.


Paw PrintBe Aware- When you’re planning your trip locate dog parks that are along the road.  You’re going to have to make pit stops of your own, so grab lunch and take it to a park where the pups can play and you can eat and stretch your legs. Everyone is happy :-) If you just find regular parks remember to pack some bags for “business time”.

This was an awesome dog park in Mobile, AL where we got to have a picnic while the pups ran off some steam.


Paw PrintPet Rent- In case you weren’t aware, pets aren’t cheap! Most hotels allow dogs, but the fee is more than the human fee. I kid you not! We did not stay in 5 star hotels because I refused to pay that much money for the dogs. We found hotels that either let dogs stay free (La Quinta has some nicer hotels where dogs stay free and they often have dog parks on their property), or a smaller fee, like $10. But don’t expect a 5-star hotel with a pet unless you want to pay for it.

Tomlin & Rooney thought this king size was for them. Silly puppies!


Paw PrintPack Extra- In addition to extra food & water for the car, you should also pack extra towels and shampoo. I’m glad that I did this because one day there was a hurricane & it was rainy but we still needed to let the dogs out. Just the thought of being trapped in a car with 2 wet muddy dogs will inspire you to pack the shampoo. So after play time, you can wash them (most dog parks have a hose outside) before hitting the road again. They will be tired and clean :-)

Tomlin loved the muddy dog park in Savannah, GA. 
I love the lavender puppy shampoo ;-)


Paw PrintBeaches- If you’re going to beaches, make sure you’re aware of dog laws…not all beaches allow dogs, even on leashes. We learned this the hard way (womp womb)

Rooney at the beach.  Did you know that sand is really tasty?! lol


Paw PrintBring Home With You- Our pups like their kennel (we call it their “room”) so we brought that with us for when we went out to dinner and they needed to stay at the hotel. Now I would not do this if our dogs were really loud and bark while we’re gone, but they don’t. Our pups just take it as another nap opportunity.  Also bring their water and food dishes and favorite toy from home; try to keep things familiar for them.

Rooney loves Mr. Potato Head

Rooney & Mr Potato Head

Paw PrintPlay Mat- I purchased a pet seat cover for the back seat & loved it so much I purchased another one for my hubby’s car.  A road trip has the potential to really get your car dirty and this thing has saved us so many times.  It protects the seats and makes cleaning later so much easier: just dump off the dirt or sand and throw it in the laundry.  This one easily clips on, is water resistant, and is only $10.

Pet Rider_thumb[4]

Paw PrintThe Obvious- If you know you’re pet hates the car, 28 hour road trips are not in your future.  But if not, this really could be a fun trip, so make sure your pet has up-to-date vaccines and tags before you leave.


Bringing your pet with you on a road trip doesn’t have to be a nightmare, but planning is essential. Take the time to get organized and prepared and you’ll have a great trip with awesome memories with your pet.

Be sure to follow Darby here, too!


  1. Your dogs are so cute road trippin' it up! I don't think mine would last 28 hours in a car! Mac gets bored in the 20 minutes it takes to get home from the boarding place we take them too!

  2. Great tips! We often take shorter car trips with our dogs, and I make sure to bring their blankets with them.

  3. Sweet pups! I could NOT imagine that long of a car ride! We typically board our dogs. We have taken them as far at Denton, TX before! haha I love it Darby!


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