Pet Travel. Made Easy.

3 Top Pet Travel Peeves

Here’s a shocker: we love having a business that allows us to travel with our dogs so we can research pet friendly places to go and things to do and blog about our experiences … all so we can make it fun and easy for other people to travel with their pets.  It’s a ruff job, but somebody’s got to do it!

And when you travel as much as we do, it helps to have a thick(er) skin. We like to think we’re pretty easy to get along with. Not much fazes us and when something does, we’re more likely to keep quiet than to make a fuss. Life is too short and all that. BUT, there are three pet travel peeves that do faze us, and I am choosing to write about them.

#1 – Not picking up after your pet

People pointing accusing fingers at man

You! You! You!

Nothing spoils a walk like stepping in the poop left behind by careless pet owners. Really, how hard is this one to fix? Apparently, very hard because we see poop on city sidewalks, hiking trails, parks – pretty much anywhere people walk their dogs. This pet peeve, more than any other, causes people to resent dog owners. And we’ve heard many times on our travels that it’s the primary reason for keeping parks and other attractions from going pet friendly. Amy has a great tweet reminder for this: There is no poop fairy. Pick after your pets. Your behavior reflects on all dog owners.

#2 – Not obeying the local leash laws

Man with folder arms, scolding look

Tsk ... Tsk ... Tsk

People don’t care how well behaved you think your dog is; if the sign says dogs must be leashed – do it. It shows respect for the resident pet owners that are left behind to deal with problems created by people traveling with pets. Here’s another reason: injuries caused by Rover are grounds for a civil suit. You could lose a small pile of cash and, possibly, your dog all because of one moment you couldn’t be bothered with a leash. And sort of a corollary peeve – be present. When you walk your dog, walk your dog – stay off your cell phone. Your best friend deserves your full attention.

#3 – Not restraining your pet while driving

Woman screaming

Why?! Why?! Why?!

If you’re traveling down the highway at 65 mph, so is your pet. Literally. Crates, carriers, or harnesses prevent Fido from making an unannounced visit to check the view from your lap while you’re driving and keep Kitty from crawling under the brake pedal just when you need to slow down. Restraints also protect pets from injury in case of an accident, which may be caused by your pet being loose in the car in the first place! And don’t get me started about the people who let their dogs ride in the open bed of a pickup truck. If anyone can offer a good reason for this practice, let me know what it is in a comment.

What about you? Do these three top pet travel peeves pretty much sum it up, or do you have something else you’d like to add? Let ‘er rip!

  • MRSBROOKS says:

    I have two huge dogs and one tiny car, my dogs don’t fit in my back seat so i have to fold the seats down which means i cant use harnesses. there isn’t a crate that my dogs will fit in that will fit in my car. do you think the barrier sold for cars are good enough in a situation like mine?

    My number one pet peeve is people who leave thier dogs in the car on even slightly warm days. I've called the cops more them a few times. and rescued one little dog that i didnt think could wait for the cops.

    • Hi! Thank you for the great question. I think in a situation where other options won't work the solid barriers are better than not having any restraint at all. One thing I'll point out for you to keep in mind is that if a door came open in an accident your dogs might still be able to escape. Being sure to lock the doors of the vehicle while you're driving would help prevent that.

  • Bag of poo says:

    How I HATE seeing “puntables” riding in a driver's lap. Do you have any idea how severely your dog will be injured when the airbag goes off? My son and I were driving down a state road and saw a medium sized dog wandering back and forth across the FRONT seats! YES! That included across the DRIVER'S LAP! We are talking about the size of an English Springer Spaniel! *facepalm*

    And don't tell me you can't pick up after your dogs. You say those little bags are too expensive? Why not use those bags you get by the hundreds from the grocery store? Somehow, I don't think the poop is going to mind. If you don't want someone leaving poop in your yard, then what makes you think they want your dog leaving it in theirs? “Its too gross!” and “I'm gunna barf!” are not good enough excuses. Carry a second bag (for yourself), a water bottle to rinse your mouth, wet wipes and hand sanitizer.

  • Love your list!

    Would add that a crate should be secured to the vehicle as it, too can go flying in an accident. ;)

  • EdieJ says:

    They are all bad but to me #3 is horrific – not only cruel to animals but also bearing the potential for causing major collisions as people swerve to avoid dogs falling out of pickups. That said, #2 causes me more annoyance on a daily basis. Nearly every time I walk Frankie some loose dog comes over to us and I have to protect Frankie (and myself)! When the owner comes along he/she invariably says, “Oh but my dog is friendly.” Which is besides the point because Frankie isn't. Then there was the time a group of us on the trail scrambled to find the owner of a loose dog, only to discover, when we got hold of the owner on her cell phone, that “Oh, it's okay, my dog knows how to find her way home.” Aaargh!!

    • What you describe is certainly a pain. If it only affected one owner, without causing angst to anyone else – fine. But these peeves affect everyone. Like I said to Maggie, all we're asking is for people to exercise some personal responsibility.

  • Maggie says:

    Amen! I think not picking up after your dog and not obeying leash laws are particularly damaging to other dog owners. People who shirk those basic pet-care responsibilities ruin the fun for other responsible pet owners!

    • Maggie, you are absolutely right. The thing that frosts me is that all of these peeves lay within the realm of personal responsibility. We're not asking people to show up any where, or take a test, or jump through any other hoops. We're just asking people to exercise some common sense.

  • michelechollow says:

    Agreed! The worst is not restraining a dog or cat while driving. I think these people (like those who text and talk on hand held cell phones) should be heavily fined because they put all of us on the road at risk of serious injury or worse.

    • From a fellow citizen safety perspective, not restraining your pet (and using a cell phone while driving) is probably the worst pet peeve. From the standpoint of get more places to “GoPetFriendly,” not cleaning up after your pet tops the list of pet peeves.

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