Hi guys! So this may or may not be helpful for you, but in preparation for picking up my cute, little, Maltipoo puppy (who is still nameless, ugh!) I spent so much time online doing research! I spent hours trying to find the blog post/article that covered “what to pack for my road trip to pick up my puppy,” but found nothing! With this being a substantial road trip (8+ hours), I feel like I needed all the help and guidance I could get, I mean, what was I supposed to pack to pick up my new puppy? Is there anything I’m probably forgetting that is mission critical? What should I expect during 8+ hours in the car with my new puppy? Is it going to be near impossible to do myself or will I be fine?
So. many. questions! Let’s be real, I always ask a lot of questions, but since I wasn’t able to find the exact article I was hoping to online, I figured, why not write my own?! So here we go, I’m sharing all the things I packed on my road trip to VA (from CT) to pick up my 8 week-old puppy. I’ll make sure to update this post with which items were necessary, which items helped out a lot, and which items I wouldn’t waste my time packing again. Here we go!
First off, let me say a HUGE thank you to Mooshie Pets, TUG Leash, and Best Friends by Sheri for supplying me with some of the items featured in today’s post. I’ll go way more in depth on these products in a future “Puppy Guide Must Haves” post, but for now I’ll just say: they’re awesome!
The Carrier Tote- I spent a lot of time debating whether I would do this drive on my own or adapt to my mom’s schedule to have a companion for the trip. I ultimately decided to do the drive myself. I have plenty of experience road tripping solo, but I also realize this will be a lot different having a puppy with me! Bathroom breaks aren’t going to be as easy as they once were, but they’ll hopefully be pretty seamless with this carrier tote. I’ve had this carrier for years (used it many times with my previous dog, Cookie). I got it at Home Goods, and unfortunately can’t figure out the brand, but I’ll link a few similar ones here, here, here.
I’m VERY against leaving dogs in the car during summer months, it’s so dangerous! I plan on having my puppy by my side every minute of this trip–it’s going to be 90+ degrees outside!–and the carrier will make that task a bit easier.
The Gear- I really have no idea how small my puppy will be. I bought her the XS harness by Puppia (one of the best harnesses, I did my research!) and am worried that this XS harness will actually be too small. Either way, I want my little girl wearing something that I can hook onto the carrier or with a leash (although I’m not sure I’ll need to use the leash yet, because without all of her vaccines she shouldn’t really be walking around on grass).
This TUG Leash is awesome! While I haven’t tested it out on my puppy yet, I’ve spent some time seeing how it differs from other retractable leashes. The design and quality of this one are both top of the line!
The Toys- Did I pack too many toys? Maybe! I aired on the side of “the more the merrier” here. I mean, I remember when I was a kid and on a road trip…I definitely didn’t play with the same toy the whole ride, so why should I assume my puppy will? Ha! Maybe I’m crazy. Either way having at least 2-3 toys seems reasonable and smart for a road trip. You want the puppy to have something to keep it company while you’re driving and these toys will do just that! (Hopefully!) Check out these super cute, non-toxic toys that Mooshie Pet sent me! Harry Barker Bone, Ice Cream Rope, and Orbee Bone.
The Make-Shift Carseat- I spent a lot of time researching carseats for my puppy. There were so many amazing ones I found online, but they were also pretty expensive! Taking my mom’s advice, I decided to have a make-shift carseat for my puppy this trip, and will revisit whether I really needed a carseat going forward. All I did to “build” this one was buy a super soft storage bin (which will later be used for my puppy’s plethora of toys!), line the bottom and sides with a plastic bag, pad the bottom and sides with a blanket, and add toys! Bin is from Home Goods, as are the blanket, bear, and frog toy. My mom actually suggested I use a cardboard box, but I like the fact that with this soft, flexible bin I’ll be able to loop the seatbelt through the side handles for extra security.
This bed was sent to me by Best Friends by Sheri. It’s amazing! I spent so much time online looking for a donut shaped bed that would not only provide my puppy with extreme comfort (most importantly!), but also something that wouldn’t be an eye sore in my living room (less importantly, but still important to me). This bed is SO soft (I want to start using it as my pillow), and is also machine washable! Can you believe it?! The Best Friends by Sheri Luxury Shag Faux Fur Donut Bed comes in a few different sizes and also comes in Taupe. Pictured here is the Frost color, which blends perfectly into my apartment decor!
I’m not sure whether my puppy will just sleep in her carseat (when I stay over with friends, because I’m not doing the 8+ hour car ride in just 2 days!), or if she will sleep in her bed, but I think it’s much better to have it packed just in case!
The Crate- Am I even going to need to use this adorable pink dog crate? I don’t know. I threw it in the back of my car because I have plenty of room and it actually came super in handy because I stuffed all the other dog gear inside of it for easy transporting. I figure I will probably try to get away with not using the crate when I sleep over in my sister’s apartment, and hope that my puppy will just sleep in her bed, but we’ll see! Being over prepared is the name of my game! [And yes, I bought my puppy a pink crate! It was only $35 on Amazon!]
-Plenty of poop bags (is that what they’re called? I have no idea!)
–WeeWee pads galore! I think I packed 15, which is definitely overkill for my three-day trip, but I don’t care.
–Clorox Wipes… fingers crossed we don’t have any major accidents, but if so I’m prepared!
-Paper towels…I’m going to say it another 10 times, never. too. prepared.
-Extra blanket and extra towel (again, I’m prepared for the apocalypse of all poop/pee/throw up disasters).
-All packed in my The Fred Shop bag. This tote is amazing! It came with a purchase from The Fred Shop, and I honestly don’t know what I’d do without this bag. People see me using this bag and always ask where I got it! Then they immediately reply that they. need to go there and buy something to get the bag with their purchase! How funny?
-Dog bowl. (These have a non-slip silicone rim on the bottom of them, which is awesome)I thought about packing a separate bowl for food, but I think one is fine for the trip. It’ll probably be easier to feed my puppy and then give her water, rather than bombarding her with both options at once. Might be wrong about this, we’ll see…