How To Have a Stress Free Holiday with Your Dog!
Experienced travel journalist and vlogger Andrew Ditton spends his life travelling the country together with his devoted companion, Dougal. He’ll be joining our Camping sponsor Lunar (on stand 109) at Arley Hall. Here he reveals the secret to stress-free holidays with your dog.
Anyone who has tried to book a dog-friendly holiday will know what an exhausting, arduous, and demoralising job it can be. You apply filters on search engines, yet the results they throw back are ambiguous or incorrect. You trawl through website after website looking at beautiful accommodation, and after finding the perfect place for the tenth time only to find ‘No dogs allowed’ buried among the small print in the T&Cs, you simply giving up searching. That is of course if you find reference to dogs on the website. Often you have to ring up or email to check, leave a message, wait for a response….It can be a soul-destroying task.
It does not need to be this way. Two of the largest accommodation providers in the UK are dog-friendly. Those two providers are the Caravan and Motorhome Club, and the Camping and Caravanning Club. Every single site on their respective networks allows dogs. Every single one! And that is in addition to the huge majority of privately-owned caravan sites and small, 5-unit certificated ‘retreat’ sites that both clubs licence.
A caravan or a motorhome will set you and your dog free. Going on holiday can be particularly stressful for your dog, as we all know that dogs are only comfortable with a regular routine. Having your very own space wherever you go, a consistent space, and being able to keep to your familiar routine, will make for a settled and happy hound. I’ve been caravanning with my Jack Russell, Dougal, all his life. We have stayed in hotels now and again, but neither of us comfortably settle in an anonymous hotel room in the same way that we do in our own personal living space on wheels. We don’t sleep as well in strange beds as we do in our own beds. Most importantly though, with our caravan with us we can go where we want, when we want, and we take our own rules and our own standards with us.
Caravan or motorhome? Both have their pros and cons. Caravans are cheaper to buy, cheaper to maintain, and allow you the flexibilty of travelling about in your own car when set up on site. Motorhomes, on the other hand, are quicker to set up on site, and are more suited to those who like to discover new places on a frequent basis, touring from place to place.
Another headache you can kiss goodbye to when you have a caravan or motorhome is where to eat. It’s one thing to find dog-friendly accommodation, it’s another to find a dog-friendly restaurant nearby. Few dogs would like to be left alone in an unfamiliar environment while you go out to eat, and few hoteliers allow this anyway. When your kitchen is on board, you can knock up a tasty meal in no time and all eat together. And who doesn’t love a barbecue if the weather allows? Even the small things, like making a decent cup of tea or coffee (rather than relying on the overpriced and watery take-away stuff) can make a holiday so much more relaxing and fulfilling.
A caravan or motorhome is something you can enjoy all year round. Every single model in the Lunar Caravan and Motorhome line-up features effective insulation against the elements, and a heating system that will keep you warm and snug after a bracing winter walkies.
If you have any questions about how to set yourself and your dog free, and enjoy a lifetime of carefree holidays, come and have a chat with us on the Lunar Caravan and Motorhome stand at Dogfest North. We’ll be delighted to answer any questions you may have, and you can pick up some cool stuff for your dog while you’re there too. Lunar’s motto is ‘Be Together,’ and that of course includes the most important member of the family.