We’ve been taking a lot of mini-excursions with the dogs lately, and I wanted to post a few thoughts about traveling with dogs today. It seems each time we do this process, we get just a bit more streamlined than the past.
Packing for our dogs to take our next road trips seems like second nature now. Of course it helps that we’ve always got a ‘dog bag‘ ready to grab and go, and that the dogs are so enthusiastic about the whole thing too.I’ve explained that we’re riding in the car a lot safer now, with Bear wearing a Sleepypod Clickit Utility harness, and Scooter in his Sleepypod Mini, and it’s been a source of great peace of mind.
We’re fortunate in the fact that our dogs will happily ride in the car for hours on end, and mainly sleep while the car is in motion. One thing that I’ve noticed though, is that it’s important to still try to stop regularly (at least every 4 hours) to allow the dogs a chance to stretch and go to the bathroom. Our routine at home is very regular, and the dogs are always able to let me know when they want to go out. These behaviors don’t translate to the car well, especially with Scooter safely stowed away in a carrier the whole time. So we build pit-stops into our travel routine to keep the dogs happy.
To briefly prep for a day or weekend trip in the car, I first start with the car itself. We keep a lot of things we need to travel with the dogs in our car at all times, so a general assessment usually helps me know where start, and I fill in the rest of our needs from there.
- We use a car seat cover to protect our leather seats from sharp nails, dirt, & fur. We’ve updated from this one to a better model from Kurgo that we’re really loving.
- The Sleepypod Travel Accessories set is constantly in our car for various clean up needs- great for overnights in hotels too!
- We use a silicone travel water bowl from an old Bark Box subscription for drinking on the go. If we plan to do any walking or hiking with the dogs- this water bottle comes too. They’ve both always in the car.
- There’s always a bag or two of the boys’ favorite treats around. Bear’s a firm believer that snacking keeps up his energy
- I’m one of those folks who has at least 3 dog leashes, and collars of several sizes in my car at all times. These are great back up for my own dogs, but come in very useful when a loose or stray dog is encountered/found as well.
- Scooter often likes to walk for a short duration before tiring and being ready to be carried. We’ve been using this outward hound front a roo carrier with great success. Scooter really enjoys riding in it, and it is easy to wear around for me too. He seems to get even more attention than usual when riding in his front carrier, something he absolutely adores
- We also recently got a Quik Shade pet kennel. It’s been great so far! It folds down to the size of those fold up camping chairs and pops out instantly into a shaded kennel. We keep two camping chairs in the trunk of our car all the time, so it’s easy to add this pop up kennel right alongside. I had thought this would be a a product that we’d mostly keep in the car for on the go use, however Bear and Scooter both love it so much that it’s a permanent fixture in our house now.
One of our favorite little Oregon coastal towns has become a tiny town by the name of Yachats. It’s extremely hard to pronounce We’ve visited twice now, and haven’t been disappointed either time. The seafood is fresh, the ocean is close by, and it’s a sleepy little town without a lot of hustle and bustle. Ideal for a little weekend getaway for our family of four.
We could drive 5 minutes from our hotel and get down and explore the beaches really up close and personal. In doing so, we found this cool little cave, and dubbed it the ‘Bear cave’ for obvious reasons!
Right outside the hotel, past the dog potty area was a nice walking path. We took a tour of that as well, and found plenty of pretty coastal scenes in front of which to pose the dogs. This one (above) ended up being my favorite.
Here’s where the river meets the ocean…
And a view from the river delta out toward the ocean.
I love this sleepy little fogged over cove!
Scooter had fun splashing around in the tide pools, and we had to be careful to watch out for any large waves that could sneak up and sweep him away.
It’s always super windy along the coast and down at the beaches, and Scooters fur just goes wild in the wind! So fun to see!
Running on the sand without a leash is one of our dogs favorite things in life. We’re so glad that the state of Oregon has many dog-friendly off leash beaches.
Are you lucky enough to have access to water with your dogs where you live?
Scooter loves to investigate this ‘Dalmation Hydrant’ at one of our favorite dog parks.
After over a year of living in the Pacific North West, I can finally say I’ve made it to one of the areas biggest tourist draws- Multnomah Falls in the Columbia Gorge. Breathtaking doesn’t even begin to describe the power and beauty of these incredible waterfalls.
These majestic falls are nestled among red rocks, and emerald green plantings. Falling over 600 feet, Multnomah Falls is the second tallest in the USA. You can go hiking with your dogs at Multnomah Falls, but they must remain on a leash at all times. This isn’t really our preferred method of hiking, as both our dogs relish the off leash time, but it’s a required rule when visiting Multnomah Falls, and once you visit, you’ll know why. The crowds!
There are several options when it comes to accessing great views of Multnomah Falls, and park of the excursion is even handicap accessible. I’d suggest starting in the guest services building at the base of the trail, and picking up one of their black and white hiking maps, like this:
There you’ll see that you can easily hike .2 of a mile up to the first bridge (seen in many of these photos) this is where the falls split and one is behind you, and the other underneath. The path is paved, and it’s an extremely easy climb with switch backs built in along the way. About a five minute investment and you’re at the first stop-spot. Once you reach the bridge, you’ll be happy to discover that you can feel the spray from the waterfall, and can get several great photos of the larger waterfall cascading down.
From there, you can take another trail which is paved most of the way to the top, and hike up 11 long and steep switchbacks to a viewing pavilion directly over the top water fall. On warm days, packing your own drinking water is highly recommended- you really work up a thirst on those steep climbs.
All in all, we’d say that Multnomah Falls is absolutely worth stopping at with your dogs. You’ll be amazed that such an incredible natural treasure lies so close to such a major interstate. Gates open at 9am, and getting there early is preferred to avoid issues finding a parking spot. If crowds aren’t your thing, consider visiting in the off season instead.
Scooter is riding in an Outward Hound Front-A-Roo dog carrier.