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How to Have an Awesome Road Trip with your Dog

Travelling with your canine friend brings a totally new experience to life on the road, but it also brings a few unique challenges that you don’t normally run into chauffeuring your dog around town. After all, it’s a trip for two; you must pack and plan for the journey with that in mind.

With that said, a long road trip with your furry friend can be an extremely rewarding experience that both you and your dog will love. It gives you a chance to see new things and meet new people while allowing your dog the very same treat. And if you’re the sort to seek an adventure, we have some important suggestions to keep in mind when starting a trip with your four-legged friend.

Scout your Route Carefully

Like it says above, a full-on road trip with your dog requires more thought than just loading them into the care and driving them around town. Your dog will get restless. Where will you stop along the way for its comfort? Where will you sleep? What hotels allow pets?

Planning these stops should be your first priority. Local dog owners can be a great help with your preparations if you can find one to talk to. Checking online for local blogs where dog owners discuss things. If you’re visiting a city well-known for its dog lovers like Portland, Seattle or Las Vegas, you shouldn’t have too much trouble. And when in doubt, the BarkHappy app can help you find friendly spots along the way.

Visit the Vet

Be sure to take your dog to the vet before embarking on a trip. This is especially important if your dog is prone to motion sickness – and many dogs are – since the vet will be able to provide medication and guidance for that.

You want to ensure that your dog is healthy not only for fun’s sake but because scrambling to find a vet you’ve never met is stressful. If your dog has a medical condition that needs monitoring, be sure to ask your vet for referrals in the areas where you will be staying just in case of an emergency.

Plan for Play Stops

We all get restless during long car rides and dogs need to stretch their legs even more than you do. A good way to go about it is to stop every two hours or so in a rest area or park where you can allow your dog to run around for a bit.

This is why it’s very important to plan ahead and find locations along the way. If you don’t, you might find yourself veering off course and stressing out in search of a park.

Pack everything – and then some

When traveling with a dog, you should think about it like you are traveling with a toddler. Planning for their comfort might even require things that you would not assume they’d need. For example, it might occur to you to bring a toy or two for your dog, but they need their favorite toys and blankets to truly feel at home. They may not even sleep well in a hotel unless they have familiar smells from home all around them.

If they are picky with their food, be sure to pack a lot of what they love to eat so that you do not stress trying to find the right brand of kibble. Beyond that, make sure you pack a first aid kit for them as well as grooming supplies. You’ll also want to crate them in the car; it’s for their safety, but it also makes those park trips even more important.

If you take care of the little things, you’ll set yourself up for the trip of a lifetime for you and your dog. They may be a bit guarded at first, but if you stay positive and encourage their curiosity throughout the trip you’ll both make new friends and many, many memories.

Samantha Tung is a contributing writer and marketing specialist for Caliber Collision. She regularly produces content for a variety of car and travelling blogs.

5 Facts About Dogs You Didn’t Know

Raising a dog can be filled with discovery. Day-to-day interactions with our canine family members brings us joy and teaches about unconditional love. But there still may be a few mysteries – some facts about dogs you may not know.


Dogs like music depending on its type. Just as music influences our moods, it has similar effects on dogs. In a study done in Psychology Today, researchers found that heavy metal music incited more barking in shelter dogs. Classical music had a relaxing effect. An SPCA paper published in Scotland, found that many dogs seem to prefer soft rock or Reggae. Wind instruments such as the clarinet, saxophone or flute, tend to provoke howling. Check out Spotify’s Songs for Dog Therapy playlist. It is geared toward what dogs like and includes selections such as Fur Elise, Canon for Dogs and Dog Spa music.


A dog’s sweat glands are located in its paws. The sweat produced in the paws has a salty smell that has been compared to the scent of corn chips. On a very hot day, keeping a dog’s feet wet helps to cool them down. Because sweating through the paws has limited cooling capacity, dogs pant as a more efficient way of cooling off. Panting enables body heat to escape through the membranes of the throat, mouth and tongue.


Dogs can bond deeply with one person. A dog may see his favorite human as a pack leader, caregiver or best friend. Dogs can be drawn to someone’s demeanor, tone of voice, or way of moving. They can sense when they are loved and when they are being ignored. The bonds dogs form are based on trust and mutual respect and take time and attention to grow. Spending quality time with your dog in activities that are fun, helps to create a special closeness and emotional chemistry that can deepen the bond between you. The BarkHappy app gives you access to special places and events that you and your dog can share and enjoy together to help you form a closer bond.
A dog’s nose print is unique. While humans can be identified through their fingerprints, for dogs, a nose print is uniquely individual. A dog’s nose consists of small ridges and bumps that form distinct pattern groups and lines. In the past, paw prints were used for identification, but a nose ID is now considered to be more reliable.
Tail wagging doesn’t always mean happiness. While most of us associate tail wagging with a content dog, it can also be a signal that a dog is agitated, fearful or insecure. According to Psychology Today, dogs wag their tails as a social communication with the tail’s position and movement being the key to understanding its meaning. A tail held at middle height is a sign of relaxation. When the tail is held vertically, it’s a dominant signal. Lower positions are a sign of submissiveness, with the extreme being a tail tucked under the body. Dogs will move their tails rapidly at the sight of someone they know, and more slowing with strangers. If they are moving their tails strongly to the right, it indicates a positive interest and an excited state. A tail moving to the left is a sign of more negative emotions such as anxiety or aggression.

A dog’s nose print is unique. While humans can be identified through their fingerprints, for dogs, a nose print is uniquely individual. A dog’s nose consists of small ridges and bumps that form distinct pattern groups and lines. A nose ID is considered more reliable than a paw print.

Your dog ate WHAT? True stories of crazy things dogs have eaten

Whether they are motivated by curiosity, hunger or an insatiable need to chew, some dogs manage to swallow some bizarre and unusual things. In a recent poll, thousands of BarkHappy app users were asked to submit the strangest things their dogs have eaten. These canines have taken the art of eating to a whole new level.

Cement: “One of my past dogs ate a bag of wet cement! We rushed her to the vet and she got her stomach pumped, but thankfully she was okay. Jordan and Koda, Bellevue, WA

A floor tile: “Bo, being a Lab, eats a lot of random stuff he finds. The worst thing he has eaten was tile from the kitchen floor. He literally ripped it up and ate it. He pooped it out a day later and cried every time some came out. Guess that taught him to never eat tile again.” Caitlin, Philadelphia, PA

A poisonous spider: “Moony once ate a poisonous spider and went into anaphylactic shock. She was so sick she almost died. Thankfully she is just fine now, but she is one we have to watch carefully or she will not be long for this world. (She’s not the brightest.)” Sara, Seattle, WA

The couch: “My name is Diana. Our dogs are Bentley, Annabelle, and Joey. Annabelle is the couch eater.”Diana, Tulare, CA

Toilet paper: “He “accidentally” eats rolls of toilet paper and paper towels all the time.  He’s not sure how it happens.  One moment the toilet paper roll is sitting there, minding its business, perfectly intact, and the next minute, it’s blown to smithereens all over the room.  Dangerous stuff.” Jackie and Rango, Philadelphia, PA

Hot sauce: “My dog got into some of our hot sauce and would not stop hiccupping for a couple of hours. He stays away from any red sauce now (sometimes).” Gabi and Riker, Las Vegas NV

Books: “Oswin loves to eat books. I think it was something about the binding glue that he found particularly enticing. He’s definitely stopped doing it as much, but as a puppy he was quite the connoisseur of book spines.” Kara, Albuquerque, NM

A ceramic snowman: “When my dog was a puppy, about 5 months old, she got a hold of a ceramic snowman. My grandmother made a lot of ceramics when she was still alive and I was lucky enough to inherit a lot of her ceramic works. I had this snowman out on a side table as a Christmas decoration. I woke up to find a trail of ceramic pieces from my room to the living room and Frosty’s still intact face under the table he once stood on. I was really upset when it happened, but I look back and am able to laugh about it now.” Lindsey, Milwaukee, WI

An entire pizza:  “We once left a pizza box on the counter pushed all the way against the wall. It was at least a foot away from the edge. She was a 4-month-old Lab. When we came back from sports practice, we found the box empty on the kitchen floor.” Melissa and Midknight, San Diego, CA

Butter: “Kiba stole the plastic butter container off the counter and opened it, leaving two barely-there teeth marks in it and ate all the butter. He doesn’t even steal steak off the counter, but if we leave butter up there he thinks it’s fair game.” Erica and Kiba

Figurines: “My dog is a 13-month chocolate Lab, so anything is pretty much game for her to eat… but the worst was a couple of porcelain figurines I had on a side table. Actually I think (or hope) she just exploded them and left pieces for me to pick up. “Shirley and Sky

ChapStick:  “For whatever reason, my dog loves ChapStick. I give him the best treats and food but if he finds ChapStick he’ll eat it.” Ashley, Watertown, PA

Tin foil: “We mistakenly left a sheet of tin foil with salmon skin on it on the stove top when we left to get dessert, and when we came back it was reduced to tiny scraps. Her poop shined for a whole week.” Lauren and Coda, Denver, CO

Crawfish: “My dog ate three whole cooked crawfish. Luckily they passed and she was fine, but I bet those pinchers didn’t feel too good coming out.” Rebecca and Korra, Houston, TX

Legos: “Legos, either dog it doesn’t matter. They like plastic. The grandkid’s left them out and the dogs were bored.”Julie, Oliver and Brutus, Orangevale, CA

Glitter: “Years ago I had a beagle named Humphrey.  He was always very interested in arts and crafts and liked to “help”. One day he stole a container of glitter and ate most of it. He had sparkling poop for a week.”Christine, O’Fallon, MO

A set of false teeth: “We jokingly call my dog “the goat”. If given the chance, he will anything. My parents visited for a weekend, and my dad has false teeth. At night, he took his teeth out and put them on the side table. My dog knocked them off the table and proceeded to eat them. The only thing left behind was a few pearly whites on the floor.  Luckily we were able to get his false teeth replaced fairly quick.”Christina and Gremlin, aka The Goat

A container of hot chocolate mix: “My first reaction was to worry, but after some ingredient reading and internet research, hot chocolate mix won’t kill your dog….Cleaning up the poop for the next 3 days on the other hand might have a negative impact on you. “Will and Napa

Tinsel: “My dog ate a small box of Christmas tinsel. The next day it looked like he had a “Christmas ornament” hanging from his backside!”Melissa and Maynard, Pflugerville, TX

Leather car seats: “Our dog Roger has not eaten as many crazy things as our dog Pema, but he has still eaten some weird things. One weird thing he has eaten is the leather seats of our car. Almost every time we have left him in the car alone he often takes a couple bites. We once left him in the car with Pema for about 10 minutes and we came back but the seats were torn apart. Naughty Roger!!!!” Haven and Roger, Boulder, CO

Money: “$23 in cash.” Charlotte and Piper, Santee, CA

Furniture cushions: “Once when he was mad that we had left, he unzipped a couch cushion and ate a few big bites of the foam.  There was a huge mess but I didn’t know he had actually swallowed anything until the next morning when a huge chunk of perfectly intact foam came out in his poop!”Katie and Puzzles, Austin, TX

A bee: “Pal tried to eat a bee…yes, a bumblebee! He seemed fine after the initial pain of the sting, but a little while later he began howling in pain and we soon found out that the stinger was still stuck in his tongue!” Allie and Pal

 

Has your dog eaten something strange or unusual? Post a comment on BarkHappy’s Facebook page to let us know what it was or share a revealing picture of your guilty dog caught in the act on Instagram with #barkhappy. Be sure to follow @BarkHappy to celebrate life with dogs.

Make your dog a BarkHappy Ambassador for your city!

We are now taking applications for you and your dog to become BarkHappy Ambassadors for your city!  For those of you who love using the app, want to get more involved and get some great benefits see below! We will only pick a couple for each city to join the BarkHappy Ambassador Program.

Every Local Ambassador Gets:
– Ability to create public events in the app (no longer just private) to host public meetups anytime
FREE tickets/admission to any BarkHappy events nationwide
– BarkHappy Swag for you and your dog ( like Shirts, Bandanas etc)
– Featured on the BarkHappy Instagram
– First access to future versions and builds of BarkHappy before others

To Be Considered:
– have at least 25 Wags or more in the app
– have at least 10 Pack Friends or more
– use the app regularly and follow us on Instagram and Facebook
– have a sweet/friendly BarkHappy pup

TO APPLY: Email us at INFO@BARKHAPPY.COM  with your Name, City, and a screenshot of your dog’s BarkHappy Profile.
Please put “Ambassador Program” in the subject line.

APPLY NOW

NOTE: If you dont think you qualify yet, no worries! You can always get more activity in the app and apply again later. Remember the best way to get more wags is to send them- you’ll get to know other users to add them to your pack