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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi everyone! I was wondering if anyone had some advice about acclimating a pup to a new environment when we travel. I would like to visit an out-of-state friend, and my pup is 9 months old. He is used to his routine at home, and still goes down for 2 naps during the day in his crate while I work (work from home). The crate is in my bedroom, and he knows the deal - room is cool, curtains are closed, music is on, and he gets a frozen treat. Same at bedtime.

He travels in the car extremely well, so that's not the concern. My friend has a crate (unused; I bought it for the purpose of visiting him) the same size as the one I use at home, and my pup LOVES LOVES LOVES him, so that also wouldn't be an issue. But does anyone have any experiences to share about their first trip away from home? Particularly if you crated your pup at a friend's house or at a hotel? We'd obviously do a lot of activities with my pup and take him where we could, but he'd still need to take naps during the day, be crated overnight, and if we went out for a few hours. And my concern is that being in a new environment that he'd be very anxious, cry, bark, have huge separation anxiety, etc. and that the visit would be disastrous. It's a 3 1/2 hour drive, so it's also not like we could just turn around and come home if he didn't adjust well.

Would appreciate stories, thoughts, suggestions, etc. Thanks!
 

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We travel a lot with our dogs. Give him time to get comfortable in the house and with his surroundings. Take some of his toys, his bed from his crate at home with you to put in that crate. Crate him for a short amount of time the first time so he knows your coming back. He should be fine if he’s crate trained.
I also agree with the comment above. ^^^
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Unless he has substantial anxiety already, I think he’ll be fine, as long as he is well exercised and active throughout the day and you’re around a lot. You can make use of frozen Kongs to keep him occupied when when you crate him before you leave.
Not sure if he has substantial anxiety, because I work from home. Aside from overnight, I've never crated him for more than about 3 1/2 hours. I just know that even though he seems bored with me on a daily basis, when this friend visits and takes his leash for a few minutes when I run into a business somewhere (like picking up food we ordered), my pup starts whining and does NOT like when mom goes somewhere without him LOL. But at home, he'll go in his crate for naps and be fine, even though I'm not in the room. Thanks for the advice!
 

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You've heard it before: A tired dog is a good dog ;) Be sure you set him up for success by making sure he's had some aerobic exercise - and you've spent time doing things with him, not just letting him lay around sleeping - even sitting on the front porch in a new place is interesting if there are people out doing things, kids playing etc. You can visit with your friend and pup can watch all the activity. Don't forget new chew bones - benebone or raw beef shank in the crate. Try not to worry too much, most dogs are just fine with the crate and familiar things from home. You could throw a tshirt you've worn in there too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
You've heard it before: A tired dog is a good dog ;) Be sure you set him up for success by making sure he's had some aerobic exercise - and you've spent time doing things with him, not just letting him lay around sleeping - even sitting on the front porch in a new place is interesting if there are people out doing things, kids playing etc. You can visit with your friend and pup can watch all the activity. Don't forget new chew bones - benebone or raw beef shank in the crate. Try not to worry too much, most dogs are just fine with the crate and familiar things from home. You could throw a tshirt you've worn in there too.
You said the magic words: "Try not to worry too much." My breeder and my vet would tell you that worrying is my superpower LOL!
 

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Though Archie was with me 24/7, we traveled 3,000 miles over 8 days, which meant a new Airbnb each night. He was 10-months old and adapted super well. I think if you use the 1st day at your friends to acclimate and set the routine, your pup will be just fine! My philosophy is that worrying is wasted energy and that energy transfers to our pups and then they become anxious. You’re visiting a good friend who seemingly enjoys your dog, so go have fun!!
 

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We just got back from our first trip with our 4.5mo puppy. It was 3 days/2 nights in a rural cabin. Similarly to you, I work from home and my pup gets 1-3 crated naps per day (if the weather is nice, sometimes he prefers to snooze outside). Here's what worked for us:
  • introduce your pup to the space and let them sniff around/hang out for a bit first to acclimate
  • set up your crate the same way you would at home (same bedding, toys, cover, treats, music, etc)
  • wear your dog out
  • stay nearby for the first crated nap and keep it short
After that, my dog was totally fine! No whining or anything! We did a couple fun off-leash hikes in the woods to get him good and tired and he would crash in the crate for 2+ hours while I read outside on the patio or grabbed lunch.

Good luck & have fun!
 

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I think he'll be fine. We just load ours up and go. Our families are 11+ hour drives away and we take the dogs with us about twice a year. If they get uncomfortable or stressed wherever they are, we just kennel them for awhile. Their crates are their safe spaces. Take some toys and things that smell like home, like his crate pad, and he should be fine. If you're using a wire crate, you should also bring an old sheet or something to cover it so he has a space that's truly his.

Eevee also does NOT like for "mommy" to leave her with someone else, but she does ok if she can't see me. She's mostly a jerk to whoever is holding her if I'm in the ring showing another dog and she's watching. LOL
 
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