3 Cool Tips for Hot-Weather RV Travel With Pets

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July 20, 2018

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How to handle hot weather RV pet travel.

Summer is a fun time to go RVing with pets, but the hottest days of the season can put dogs and cats at risk of heat exhaustion and much worse. When the temperature rises, a home on wheels can be just as risky as a passenger car if your pets are left alone inside. Before you plan a road trip with your dog or cat, consider these three summer safety tips for RVing pets.

hot weather rv pet travel

Strolling on the beach. Picture: Cocoparisienne/ Pixabay

Choose a Cool Itinerary

Some of the most popular summertime RV destinations also happen to be located in the hottest spots on the continent. A trip to Utah Canyonlands National Park or the Grand Canyon, for example, may sound like fun for you, but for critters wearing fur coats summer RV getaways like these have all the makings of a miserable time. Save those great RV trips for the cooler fall season and plan a different trip to mild weather destinations instead. You may want to consider:

Door County, Wisconsin

Northwest Washington

Michigan’s West Coast

Maine’s East Coast 

Sauble Beach, Ontario

Create an AC Backup Plan During Hot Weather RV Pet Travel

It’s easy to think your RV air conditioner will keep your pets safe all afternoon during sightseeing excursions without them, but sometimes things beyond your control can cause your AC to shut down. For example, what if your RV park’s power went down during the heat of the day? Would anyone know your pets are inside? Even the most well-built RVs won’t keep cool very long when all the windows are closed shut during triple digit temperatures.

If you plan a sightseeing trip without your beloved animals, let someone in the park know your plans just in case a power failure happens.

For an added measure of safety whether your away or sitting inside the RV, carry a portable oscillating fan on the road. Keep the fan running as a back-up measure, should your RV air conditioner itself at any time.

Watch for Signs of Heat Exhaustion

Pets are masters at hiding pain but they’re not as adept at hiding their symptoms of heat stroke. According to the American Animal Hospital Association, early signs of heat exhaustion in pets are obvious and usually include:

  • Excessive panting and drooling
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Increased heart rate

Life threatening signs of heat exhaustion include:

  • Mild weakness
  • Stupor or actually collapsing
  • Seizures
  • Bloody diarrhea
  • Vomiting

If you spot any of these symptoms on a hot summer day, follow the Preventive Vet’s fast tips to handle heat stroke in pets and get to a veterinarian as soon as possible. Attempting first aid may cause more stress and endanger your pet’s life.

Summer RV adventures don’t seem complete without your best furry friend riding along next to you, but sometimes dogs and cats are better off in the cool confines of a pet sitter or boarding kennel. Think carefully about whether or not you want to expose your animal to brutal summer temperatures when you travel. Should you hit the road alone, you’ll have far less worries and more time to make the most out of the dog days of summer.

Of course, always keep your pet hydrated.

Rene Agredano

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