Caitlin UltimoPet Parenting / Travel

What to Pack for a Weekend Getaway

Contributed by Jenna Donleavy, traveler and pet parent of three rescue dogs: Knox, Bear & Harper

When traveling with a dog, it is always better to have a dog packing list and be overly prepared rather than scrambling for things when you are trying to enjoy your vacation. Although it might look like you’re traveling with a family of 10 for a 2-week vacation every time you hit the road, you’ll never be stuck without the pet supplies you need if you follow these tips.

First Things First: Food

Before traveling with a dog, we typically order the pup’s food on Chewy a few days before our trip. With the speedy shipping, we can order Knox and Harper their Merrick Grain-Free Real Chicken + Sweet Potato Recipe Dry Dog Food and Bear his Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Ultamino Dry Dog Food and find it on our front doorstep 2 days later. We usually individually wrap each of their meals, so we don’t have to bring or buy measuring cups, or eyeball their proportions. You can also use the Gamma2 Vittles Vault SoftStore Pet Food Storage to keep your dogs food freshly sealed. If we are going on a longer trip, we easily change our shipping address on Chewy and have the dog food shipped directly to our accommodations.

Always Bring the Crate

Equally as important on our dog packing list is our XL Petmate Navigator Plastic Kennel. This dog crate can be disassembled and stacked so suitcases and other items can lay directly in it when packing the car tight. Once we’re at our destination, the top piece slides directly into the bottom, and the swinging crate door clicks right back in. When we have to leave the pups behind, the crate houses Harper, who sometimes enjoys a “furniture snack” while away from home and we are out of sight.

Don’t Forget the Chews to Keep Them Occupied:

If we need to keep the pups busy, whether in the crate or out, we always have WHIMZEES Alligator Dental Dog Treats on hand. These dog treats are easily digested and take a chunk of time to get through, not to mention the added dental cleanup! I love a good multi-purpose chew!

Night Lights for Nighttime Fun:

A discovery of ours that we’ve recently added to their bags is the Nite Ize SpotLit LED Collar Light that we will now never leave home without, especially when we are with our pets on vacation! This night-light clicks right onto the collar, and when we are traveling with a dog out of the city lights, it’s important that we can see our pup in rural darkness. A big tail wag for this one!

Always Bring Bags For Cleanup

Because we don’t have the luxury of a backyard while living in the city, we are always picking up after the pups. As a result, we have a preference for one type of bag and one bag only. The Bags on Board Scented Bags are seriously the best! For me, it never gets easier picking up after them, which is why the larger bag (9 inches x 14 inches, to be exact) makes the experience so much less cringe-worthy!

Treats and a Treat Holder:

While with our pets on vacation, I always have my fashionable PetSafe Treat Pouch Sport. If you told me a few years ago I would be sporting this fanny pack-like-pouch in public, I would have laughed—but dog mom duties call! In all seriousness, the pouch is lightweight, flat and jet black, so it doesn’t stand out. And I always fill the bag with Wellness Petite Treats Soft Mini-Bites Grain-Free Dog Treats, because they are high in reward value and small in proportion for training purposes.

We also always make sure to bring the dogs’ favorite toys and blankets to make sure they feel right at home when we are on vacation. They are expert jet-setters now thanks to our dog packing list and all of these 5-star products on Chewy!

Jenna Donleavy bio

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