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Travel across Canada - with a dog

Travel Forums North America Travel across Canada - with a dog

1. Posted by cpsimone (Budding Member 4 posts) 6y

Hi everyone,

I'm contemplating taking a 2-3 month road trip across Canada (I currently live in the US), but can't do it unless I can find some pet-friendly budget accommodations. My research so far has not turned up good news - seems majority of hostels don't accept pets which leaves me with hotels (too pricey to do every night), camp grounds (not my first choice) and my car.

Just curious if anyone has ever traveled with a dog across Canada and can give me some advice?

Thanks.

2. Posted by vegasmike6 (Travel Guru 3562 posts) 6y

Simone,
I drove from Las Vegas to Florida to Maine and back to Las Vegas with Buffy, my cocker spaniel. Took 3 months. But, I had a Toyota truck with a camper shell and slept in the camper almost every night. A cocker is small enough that I could smuggle him into a motel room on occasion. Only did that a couple of times. A larger dog and this is not a practical option IMO.

My suggestion is to buy a van or truck with a camper shell. Something you can sleep in comfortably for months. Many out there for under $3K. Otherwise you are going to be camping most nights. Motels are expensive and not pet friendly. As you said, hostels are out. If you add up 80 nights in motels or paying camping fees, it will be at least $2K. A van/truck will almost pay for itself with just this trip.

I am going to send you a few suggestions on how to save money in a PM.

3. Posted by jambo101 (Respected Member 414 posts) 6y

Why not board the dog at a local kennel while you are away.?

4. Posted by SamSalmon (Respected Member 626 posts) 6y

Quoting jambo101

Why not board the dog at a local kennel while you are away.?

Good advice.

The Good News is that Canadians love dogs.

The Bad News is that in addition to accommodation being scarce/expensive for dog owners some provincial parks don't allow dogs at all and most that do have on-leash requirements-this will really crimp your style.

Most dog owners have small local areas where they exercise their mutts-knowledge of these areas will be hard to come by if you're just passing through.

5. Posted by cpsimone (Budding Member 4 posts) 6y

Thanks, everyone, for the advice. I have a lot more research and planning to do, so I will certainly take all of your suggestions into account. As far as boarding my dog in a kennel...she's my companion and a bigger priority than traveling so I wouldn't board her for a weekend let alone 2 to 3 months. Sam - I did notice some of the leash regulations in the parks...that's a shame, although I live in NYC so I'm used to having to deal with those sorts of rules. If the timing isn't right for the trip and I can't make it work, I'll just wait. Though it would be a lot of fun to have her along with me.

6. Posted by Isadora (Travel Guru 13926 posts) 6y

This site may be of help when it comes to dog parks in the different provinces. It's not complete by any means- and few/far between in some areas - but it may help you choose a route.

Dog Parks in Canada

There is also these sites:

Pet-Friendly Travel and Lodging In Canada

Pet-Friendly: Canada's Ultimate Online Directory for Pet-Friendly Vacation Rentals

United States and Canada Dog Travel Guide

Doggy In My Suitcase

You may have already seen these sites but, if not, may help...

ps: I assume by your request and reply that you have a large breed dog. Am I correct in this assumption?

7. Posted by cpsimone (Budding Member 4 posts) 6y

Isadora,
Thank you so much for those links! There were a couple I wasn't aware of, so thanks!

And yes, I forgot to mention - I have a large dog (a 65+ pound Golden Retriever).

8. Posted by Isadora (Travel Guru 13926 posts) 6y

Quoting cpsimone

Isadora,
Thank you so much for those links! There were a couple I wasn't aware of, so thanks!

And yes, I forgot to mention - I have a large dog (a 65+ pound Golden Retriever).

I figured your companion was a bit larger than a chihuahua or westie. We had a New Foundland (150#) and 2 Samoyed/Black Lab mix (60-75#). When we only had the Newfie, we took him on a couple of road trips in an old RX-7. He filled the back of the car and would stare out the window. People loved pointing at him as that's all they could see. He also thought he was a lap dog. (Don't they all.)

Good luck with your planning. I hope you find some things that will work for both of you.

9. Posted by Calcruzer (Moderator 1989 posts) 6y

I've got a 2-year old Mini-Australian Shepard named Cooper (picture on my profile page), and we're heading off on a cross country drive (with him) to my son's college graduation in Indiana.

We have already checked out the dog-park sites and we'll be visiting ones in Barstow, Flagstaff, Oklahoma City, and Saint Louis.

Here's the link to one of the two pictures:

http://www.travellerspoint.com/photos/stream/size/L/photoID/876730/users/Calcruzer/

[ Edit: . ]

10. Posted by chrisvasil (Respected Member 102 posts) 6y

If you are travelling in Summer, and you don't mind camping, you can do it without problem. You can find nice camp grounds everywhere that accept pets.