How To Travel With Dogs In An RV? Here’s Guide

Dogs are undoubtedly man’s best friends and the best traveling companions. RVing is a fun and affordable way to travel for many of us. As an animal lover, it’s like a natural step to bring your dog along on your RV adventures, but dogs can sometimes be tricky. We have come up with some tips for making your RV trip with your furry friend as stress-free as possible.

Dogs have different needs than us when it comes to traveling. So read below to get some ideas on making the experience more enjoyable for yourself and your pup.

How to travel with dogs in an RV?

If you’re traveling with your dog for the first time in an RV, here are some tips to keep in mind.

Housing and Resting

Most dogs do best in a kennel or crate while traveling in an RV. It keeps them safe if they feel scared of the various noises outside. Most RVs come with a built-in kennel that is sufficient for housing your dog.

However, if you don’t have one or want to bring your pet with you when sleeping in a tent, you will probably need to buy one, especially for traveling. Most people do not like putting their dogs lost in an RV because it is dangerous and a health hazard due to the close quarters.

Interior safety

Some dogs are too uncontrollable and will inevitably knock over things or tear up the furniture with their nails. Your best bet to keep this from happening is to purchase a kennel or build one if necessary, but also be sure to place everything away that your canine might knock over.

In other words, don’t leave unnecessary knick-knacks lying around that could injure your dog if he bumps into it or knocks it over. If there are cabinets, doorknobs, etc., try putting them somewhere your dog knows not to go.

Living room

If you have a small RV, the chances are that you might have little to no space in the living room. It is not good considering your dog is along with you. Instead, choose a dog-friendly RV with sufficient space for him.

Dog-friendly park

Even though some dogs don’t Iike getting out in an unusual territory like an RV park, if your dog is highly social and likes wandering out, make sure the RV site is dog-friendly. Some parks are dog-friendly and allow you to take your pet for walks, wander all about, or even exercise it outside in an area where it can run free.

Supplies you’ll need

Collars, leashes, and harnesses are a must on an RV trip. If your dog has a collar or harness, make sure it’s fit for hiking! If your dog is big and strong, consider a step-in harness rather than a collar. It’ll help distribute the weight evenly around their body to not feel uncomfortable during long trials.

Prepare the RV for your four-legged friend

You may want to purchase a dog bed for your pet. Place a well-ventilated pad in each room of your camper or trailer. It will help the dog relax while you’re driving and sleeping.

Provide treats, toys, and bowls when going out on a trip. Some RVs have heating and air conditioning systems, but these are dangerous for dogs if they’re allergic to mold. It is because most of these systems use water as the means of cooling and heating. There are also times when an allergy proves fatal for your dog. In this case, ask the campgrounds ahead of time what they do about your pet’s allergies so that you won’t have any surprises on vacation.

How much space does your dog need?

When you’re planning on traveling with your canine, the space required by your dog is another crucial thing you should consider. You must know how much space it will use up in the RV, so take the time to measure their size and come up with an estimate. The RV should have sufficient space for a fruitful camping trip for both your dog and other humans.

Know the laws

Since you’re taking your dog with you on your RV trip, it’s essential to check the laws in your state and country regarding dogs in travel trailers or motorhomes. If your state doesn’t allow pets on travel trailers, you’ll need to find another way to take your dog with you without breaking any law. It is especially important if you plan on keeping pets in your RV while hiking or camping out at a campsite where pets aren’t allowed.

Checklist Before You Move Out With Your Dog In An RV

Here is a quick checklist before moving out with your dog in an RV.

  • Set up your pet’s food and water bowls before you head out. It will make it easier to find them in the kitchen or bathroom at mealtimes and prevent the need for a constantly barking dog during mealtime hours. It’s easier to take a dog out twice than dealing with a loose dog in the kitchen.
  • Take your dog out at least once per day, no matter what time it is. Socializing the dog before heading to an entirely new territory is necessary. Let your dog run, play, or do whatever they want whenever they want and interact with other humans and animals. All these will make your dog feel relaxed and secure while RVing.
  • Most campground sites lack medical facilities for pets. Visit any nearby vet clinic and get your dog tested for health issues. If anything needs your attention, you would come to know about that and act appropriately. Also, make sure your dog has a full vaccination for rabies. You can’t put yourself or others at risk of rabies exposure if the dog bites someone in your RV park or while hiking in the wild.
  • Make sure your pet has fresh water every day at the same time. Don’t just refill your pet’s bowl and think that is enough. You never know when someone might forget to fill the bowl with drinking water. Dogs tend to drink random things, even dirty water, if they can’t find fresh water accessible.

It would help if you did not miss these main checkpoints when heading out with your dog in an RV.

Can a dog ride in a pull-behind camper?

Many people buy small camper vans, sometimes called a “mini-camper” or “pull behind camper.” These camper vans come in handy while hunting, fishing, or exploring the wild, as their compact size lets them pass through everything. These vans often come with beds and overhead cabinets for storing items. Consider putting down an outdoor rug or two if you’re using a camper. It will help your pet transition from the outdoors to the inside of your RV with more ease.

While camper vans are usually pet-friendly when a large tent trailer is not, here are a few questions to ask your dealer to make sure you can bring your furry friend with you on your next camping trip.


Camping is great fun throughout the year, with pets tending to amplify the pleasure. However, the most important thing you should consider is if your pet feels safe and happy during the trip. The best way to ensure that your pet will feel comfortable while away from home is by finding out which transport method works for them the best. For example, dogs do not do well riding in vehicles for too long without being let outside for breaks, so it might be best to stick to something like an RV.