Here are a few things to keep in mind to ensure a pleasant trip for both humans and pooches.
Research beforehand : It’s super important to do our research beforehand. Dogs might not be allowed in certain zones. A few areas may be too dangerous for the dogs to venture out. We have been to a couple of places where leopards roam around at night. We have stayed in resorts amidst forests. Talk to locals and find out about the wildlife before venturing out. Also, ensure returning to safety before dark.
Leash your dog: Not all people and places will appreciate a dog walking around without any constraint. No matter how well-behaved your dog is, make sure you have her/him leashed until you are 100 per cent sure that everyone is comfortable with an off-leash dog.
Local dogs (and other livestock): Most the places will have some dogs. While most local dogs might simply bark from a distance, we have come across some who were very territorial. Unfortunately, Vanilla and Coco did get attacked a couple of times during our three-month-long road trip. Also, watch out for livestock such as sheep or water buffalos. Most often there is at least one dog herding them and maybe quite protective of the herd.
Pick up after your dog: Whether it’s your home or a place you are visiting, it’s important that you pick up after your dog. While it is basic etiquette, it is one way to ensure that anyone visiting the place with their dogs is not frowned upon. Be extra careful in places where people move around a lot – no one likes stepping in dog poop!
Be courteous: While walking with your dog, give way to others. When someone approaches, move to a side and let the dog stay on the side till they pass.
Keep the premises clean: Getting dog-friendly accommodation is not always easy. When you do get an accommodation that allows our pets, it’s our duty to make sure it is well kept during our stay, no matter the duration. Do not let your dog sleep on furniture ( if you have been advised not to). Make sure that the dog eliminates outside. Ensure that the dog does not chew on any furniture or rip apart upholstery. We had multiple people refuse to let us stay in their property as they had a bad experience with pets previously.
Deepthi AR is a behaviourist based in Bengaluru; you can follow her on @happypupprsblr. Here are her other tips for travelling with your dog.