Many people that go on family vacations have a hard time leaving their pets behind. While pet boarding is easy to find, many pet owners feel that their beloved animals should be a part of the trip. For road trips, it’s as simple as making sure your pets get potty breaks, walks and plenty of food and water. However, if your next family trip is to the Grand Canyon or another national park, it may require some extra planning. Here is what you need to know about taking the family (pets included) to the Grand Canyon.
National parks are typically not pet friendly
The first thing to look into when bringing a cat or dog on your next trip is to make sure the destination is pet friendly. Most national parks don’t allow pets on their trails, as they are usually only allowed on paved parking lots and campgrounds. Fortunately, the Grand Canyon is one park that allows pets. Feel free to bring your family and your dog to the South Rim area of the canyon.
What to bring
Bring proper identification for your pet in case they get lost in the park. Your pet should be wearing a collar with tags and be on a leash the whole time. Make sure to have your pet micro-chipped before the trip, which allows a vet or shelter that comes across your pet to scan the microchip to find your contact information.
Don’t forget to bring your pet’s favorite toys and blankets on your trip to ensure their happiness during the long drive. You will want them to feel as comfortable as possible while on the road to avoid unnecessary barking or clawing. Pack up their normal medication and regular food so that there isn’t an upset stomach while in the car. Feed your pet a light meal before leaving and light meals throughout the day until you’ve reached your destination.
You should plan ahead by choosing a route to the Grand Canyon that offers plenty of rest areas. You’ll need to let your pet out to stretch, take bathroom breaks and to burn off energy. Try to make stops every three hours to keep your pet comfortable and look into dog-friendly hotels that might be on the way in case you want to stay overnight in a hotel.
Don’t ever leave your pet in the car unattended. No matter the temperature, you are risking your pet’s safety by doing this. In hot or even mild weather, your pet could die in a hot car. Consider going through fast food drive-throughs for meals, rather than stopping to eat indoors. If you plan on taking Grand Canyon tours from Las Vegas, look into pet daycare options that will find your pet a safe place to stay while you and your family explore the canyon.
Photo by fPat Murray