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  1. #1

    Default Chicago to New Orleans road trip - Just my dogs and I!

    Alright, first time poster here. I have decided to undertake my first multiple-day road trip in the US (there was a road trip involving a smart car in Italy where I drove from Trieste to Verona in 5 hours. Those cars are small. That's all I have to say about that one.) This will be my first road trip with my dogs and has been kind of an improptu decision.

    I live in Chicago and usually only travel as far as Milwaukee or the surrounding burbs. Lately, I've been feeling a real need to get out of here and I just found out this week that I have 3 unexpected days off from work next week. And since I am free from Wednesday thru Sunday, I thought to myself "What better way to make the most of my time off than to road trip down to NOLA?" I used to live there and have friends down there so do not have to worry about accommodations once I'm there. I'm taking my dogs with me because they're good company and it seems like the thing to do. And chances are they will be my only company as most of my friends can't take 3 days off on such short notice.

    And so to that end, I appeal for any and all advice my fellow road trippers may have for me.

    My preparations so far extend to this:

    - car tuned up and ready to go, got the road trip OK from my mechanic
    - signed up as a premium service member with AAA
    - checked with the dogs' Vet as to what they need, etc.
    - buying a portable GPS system for the car
    - saw a AAA Emergency Road kit for the car at Target which seems like a good idea, going back for it.

    Should I invest in one of those steering wheel anti-theft devices? Being that I am female and will only have dogs for company (dogs that may look larger but hide from Chihuahuas no less), any safety tips you can throw my way would be greatly appreciated. I am thinking of leaving around 3 or 4 in the morning on Wednesday and going as far as I can get considering I will have to stop every 2-3 hours for the dogs. Since I don't know how far I will get before I really start to get tired, I figured I would just have a good listing of La Quinta hotels (very dog friendly) on or near my route throughout the trip, for once I do decide to rest. I can drive comfortably for quite a long time, but with the dogs probably won't make it as far as I would on my own. Wasn't planning on making any reservations ahead of time though. So yeah, that's about all I have so far. Any thoughts on of this?

  2. #2
    RoadTripper Brad Guest

    Default Might be a squeeze

    Greetings Audeo!

    Sounds like you have your trip pretty well planned out. 4 days round trip won't leave much time for visiting and sight seeing, so it is kind of a squeeze.

    Everything else seems fine. I would say, though, that I personally think those "club" devices are more or less a waste of money, because I really don't see how they work, except for hitting the thief in the ribs each time he tries to turn, or whacking the windshield for that matter.

    Just my 2 cents anyway. Hope the trip goes well!


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Keithville, LA

    Default Looks Good to Me

    About safety.

    Just use your common sense. Be aware of your surroundings and don't do anything stupid. You should be ok.

    I took a 4100 mile solo roadtrip earlier this year and had a blast. I never once felt unsafe. Frustrated, yes, but never unsafe. Here's a link to my field report.

    Other than that you should be ok. I've never travelled with my dogs but I bet that you will have a blast with them. I have two very large dogs and a pug. Of those only one acts well in the car, but she's really really stupid and I'd be very afraid to take her on a trip with me. The pug would be a great choice except that she's scared to death of it and squeeks and shakes the entire time. Not good for a roadtrip companion. :(


  4. #4

    Default Traveling with dogs

    Your trip sounds like fun. We have three large dogs and I always wondered if they would be able to handle a long road trip or not.

    Here is a thought:
    I have not done this search, so I dont have any locations to give you - but I would do an online search of dog parks that might be along your route.

    Even if they are a little out of the way, it might be worth the extra time.

    Dog parks are becomming more and more popular and I would imagine you could find some. Most dog parks include fenced in areas where your dogs can run and play off leash. This would be great way to let them stretch their legs get rid of excess energy after being cooped up in a car all day.

  5. #5

    Default more dog suggestions

    Ok, so now that I posted that first post:

    I found a site that lists hotels, resturants, dog parks, etc for major cities in every state.
    Last edited by Mark Sedenquist; 08-03-2007 at 06:20 PM. Reason: Preferred URL Format herein

  6. #6


    Hey guys, thanks for the support and tips. TravelingAg, I am actually quite familiar with is also a great tool I use for locating pet friendly hotels according to city listing.

    I know I'm not leaving myself alot of time to sight see and whatnot, but mostly this is one of those trips where I need to get out of the city before I become tempted to wreak havoc on society lol. I've really been wanting to see how the dogs will fare, and while I could have chosen a shorter trip, I used to live in NOLA and so I know how dog friendly it is. There are some beautiful parks and beaches down there and the restaurants will usually be quite nice to you and your pooches on the patio. New Orleans has always been my happy place.

    You know when the day to day just starts to bog you down too much and people tell you to just ignore it and go to that happy place in your mind? Well I said screw that. I'm driving ;)

    Also, to respond to Brad's post, I agree about those club thingy's I don't really get how they work. I picked up a cheaper model ($19) mostly to use as a deterrent. I figured if anything, it will look like extra work to steal the car, so they'll move onto the next vehicle. I drive a '97 Saab 900 hatchback. It's a great car, but what I love most is that it's a unique shape that isn't all that popular. As for the short amount of time, yeah, it probably is a bit of a squeeze. Leave Wednesday and come back Sunday though. I don't have to be anywhere until late Monday afternoon, so I'm trying to budget my time and make the most of it. If I was one to wait for perfect timing I'd never have any fun.
    Last edited by Audeo; 08-06-2007 at 03:21 PM.

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