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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
We are planning our summer vacation and would like to drive from DC to Maine (approx 11 hrs.) staying in at a motel over night and then camping in Acadia National Park for a few days. For the drive home we will go to Portland and make stops in Mass. and NY along the way. Our puppy will be 20 weeks (5 months) old by then. Has anyone made a similar trip to this? Can this be done with such a young puppy? Should we postpone the trip to later in the summer or next year when the puppy is a little older.
 

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Kristy
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Sure it can be done, be sure to leave room in the car for his crate (make sure you purchase a wire one that will fold flat - I wouldn't trust him in a soft crate) so you have a safe place to leave him when you leave him alone in a hotel etc. He should have adequate shots by then to be protected, you'll just have to leave extra time in your schedule to walk, train and exercise so he's not a nightmare in the car. You'll have fun :) HOpe you'll post his photos :)
 

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I love doing road trips with my dog, so I totally encourage it. But I'm not sure I'd do it with such a young pup. Here's why:

At 5 months old, your pup may not be 100% house trained. And staying in strange hotels or homes may set him back, simply because he won't necessarily where the door is, how to ask. He'll probably be just learning how to ask at your house. Dealing with accidents in your own house in one thing - but in hotels or friends' homes... not so great.

BUT - if you are going to be camping the whole way... I might actually try it! Most campgrounds don't let dogs be free off leash, so you have to plan for that. A tie-out, a crate, etc. But being outdoors so much, if there's somewhere to swim, it would probably be really fun.

One other thing to think about: with my adult dog, an 8 hour road trip becomes about 10-11 hours, with stops and everything. There are bathroom breaks, but you also have to let them stretch their legs, get some exercise, eat, have a drink, etc. Also - if your pup isn't travelling in a crate, there may be accidents in the car.

So.... I might wait til he's a bit older - maybe just til later in the summer as you said - but maybe some people here who've done a road trip with a younger pup will weigh in... Hope some of this helps.
 
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Can't offer any advice but I'm also looking at taking my pup on holiday with me next month when she too will be 5 months old so also interested in answers! I'd be staying in hotels... she's pretty mellow and easy going but I do worry about how she'd find sleeping in a new place... I like the idea of camping with her and there are places to camp but it'll be 30 c plus so I think too hot for her really.
 

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Road Trip Update!

Enzo did great on our road trip to Maine! We drove from Alexandria, VA to Acadia National Park, ME with stops in Newport, Boston, NYC and Freeport. We stayed in several hotels and camped for 4 nights. We have a hammock for the back seat and had a couple of toys and a himalayan chew to keep him occupied, but he just slept when we were in the car. We never left him in the hotel alone. We don't trust him enough yet, and he didn't take to the plastic travel crate. It was alright, because the wether cooperated and we were able to eat all of our meals on patios at restaurants. Enzo was spoiled and got to sleep with us in bed and in the tent, but that stopped as soon as we got home and he's back in his wire crate in our bedroom.

Here are a few pictures from our trip!

PS not sure why some pictures are coming in sideways- sorry about that.
 

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I recently took a road trip from South Florida to Wisconsin with my Golden Puppy. He was 17 weeks at the time. He did great! It was just the two of us. Normally when I make that drive I do it in 3 days, but I added a day so I would not be in the car for more than 6 hours on any day. He rode in a crate in the hatchback of the car. It's the same crate he sleeps in at home, so he was very comfortable in there. We stayed at dog friendly motels and I made sure to take him for a nice walk each afternoon right after we checked in. While driving, we stopped for potty breaks every 2 hours. I was really amazed at how well he did! He never barked or cried ... just chilled in his crate. I didn't think I would be able to go to dinner and leave him in the room for fear he would bark and disturb other guests, but he went right into his crate in the room after he ate his dinner, and I was able to leave for a quick bite. On the last day we were stuck in horrendous Chicago traffic after already being in the car for hours, and he never even made a peep! I think my best advice is to make sure he's already comfortable in his crate before taking a trip where he will be in it in the car. I would not suggest a wire crate. I don't believe they are as safe in case of an accident as the airline type crates are. I was able to get a room on the first floor each evening and parked right outside the door. I put him in the room first and brought the crate in right away. I say go for it and hopefully you will have as much luck as I did!

PS. Just realized you already took your trip, but maybe this advice might help someone else.
 

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That's wonderful :). I'm so glad Enzo did so well. We're actually going to Acadia in September with my 2 sons families & dogs (we'll have 3 dogs total)! We're not camping but rented a dog friendly house in Southwest Harbor. My husband & I have been there and are so excited to show our family how beautiful it is. We're driving from NJ so it will probably be 8 hours for us and if you could recommend a dog friendly hotel a few hours outside Acadia I would appreciate it :). Thanks and I just love your pictures. Enzo is a doll!
 

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Goldens travel so well. You figure dog show people make long trips like that all the time. Just be careful of not over walking him at that age.
 

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That's awesome - so glad it went well! Road trips with dogs are really fun. Honestly, even with my 4-year-old dog, I would never leave her in a hotel room alone. You never know if a cleaner is going to accidentally go in, or if your dog starts to bark incessantly at strange noises outside the door. It's so much safer just to make them part of the whole trip - which is what you did! Bet you it won't be your last trip together!
 

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My wife and I would love to take our young golden to Acadia. I didn't think you could take dogs to national parks, but I could be wrong. What things are you able to do at Acadia with your pup?
 

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My wife and I would love to take our young golden to Acadia. I didn't think you could take dogs to national parks, but I could be wrong. What things are you able to do at Acadia with your pup?
You can definitely bring your dog to Acadia. I took a trip to Grand Canyon National Park last month and was pleasantly surprised to see quite a few dogs there :). We're going to Acadia in September with our golden and my 2 sons dogs :). Can't wait! Here's a fun link for a website with fun info for going to Acadia with dogs.
http://blog.gopetfriendly.com/acadia-the-pet-friendly-national-park/
 
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