RV Camping and Full-Time RVing with Dogs

One of the benefits of RVing with your dog is the freedom it offers. There’s no need to worry about finding pet-friendly hotels or about rental restrictions. RVing with your dog allows you to tailor your space to perfectly suit both your needs and those of your furry friend. Here are a few steps to make your RV a home away from home for you and your pup.

Tips for RVing with Dogs


1. Protect Your Furniture

Protecting your RV furniture from pets becomes a priority to maintain its look and longevity. You can use blankets as an effective way to shield your seats and sofas from pet hair and dirt. Applying Scotchguard to your furniture can also help repel stains and spills, making cleanup a breeze. Another great way to extend the life and look of your furniture is by using fabric protectors like Scotchguard. A coating of Scotchguard repels water and creates a barrier against stains. You can also help protect your furniture by making sure pets are clean before they come inside and clipping their nails to prevent scratches. Lastly, we recommend brushing your pets often to reduce the amount of shed fur.

woman with dog inside a van

For further protection when RVing with dogs, consider using pet-friendly throws specifically designed to withstand the wear and tear that pets can bring. You can keep your RV cozy and clean with these simple tips so both you and your pets can have a good time.

2. Acclimate Your Dog to RV Travel

Some dogs love car rides, while others seem to think it’s torture. One way to improve your experience RVing with your dog is by acclimating them. If you have a towable RV, start by introducing your dog to the RV environment in a calm, stress-free manner. Allow them to explore the interior at their own pace, spending short periods inside to become familiar before taking any trips.

For those RVing with dogs in a motorhome, begin with brief local drives to help your pet adjust to the motion and sounds of the vehicle. These short trips are crucial for building positive associations with the RV. This can help your dog not equate motorhome trips with stressful destinations like the vet’s office. Gradually extend the length of your trips as your dog becomes more comfortable, always ensuring a safe and reassuring return home. This approach helps reinforce the RV as a safe space, setting the stage for smoother and more enjoyable travels together.

3. Give Your Dog Their Own Space 

The next step you can take to ease the transition into full-time RVing with dogs is giving your pup their own space. We recommend bringing their favorite bed or the crate they normally sleep in and placing it in a safe, quiet area of the motorhome. You can also bring their favorite toys and blankets that smell like them so they feel confident knowing that the area belongs to them. This will help ease the stress and anxiety that may come with transitioning into a new home.

Group of young friends sitting near RV with their cute pet dog, spending time together on campsite, enjoying summer holidays trip, selective focus.

When diving into full-time RVing with dogs, creating a personal space for your pup is crucial. We recommend bringing their favorite bed or the crate they normally sleep in and placing it in a safe, quiet area of the motorhome. You can also bring their favorite toys and blankets that smell like them so they feel confident knowing that the area belongs to them. This will help ease the stress and anxiety, making the transition into their new home smoother while RV camping with dogs.

Must Haves For RV Camping With Dogs

1. Tags And Microchips

Whether you’re full-time RVing with dogs or you prefer weekend trips, it’s essential that your dog has identifying tags and a microchip. They’re a relatively inexpensive one-time investment that ensures your dog can be identified and anyone who finds them can contact you. When you’re RV traveling, it’s hard for your pets to recognize their surroundings and find their way back to you.

2. Dog First Aid Kit

The next thing you’ll want to bring if you’re RV camping with dogs is a dog first aid kit. On the road, you’ll never know how far you’ll be from a vet or if you’ll have cell service. It’s a good idea to keep a first aid kit for your dog on hand in addition to one for yourself.  This kit might include gauze, adhesive tape, cotton balls, hydrogen peroxide, antibiotic spray, tweezers, a soft muzzle, and a backup leash and collar. Knowing how to use these items is important for handling any minor injuries your dog may experience while RVing with dogs. The American Kennel Club has a complete list of things to keep in your dog’s first aid kit. Luckily, most of these items are similar to what you find in a traditional human first aid kit.

3. Leashes and Toys

A collar and leash are obvious supplies any dog owner needs. We recommend having at least two of each in case of an emergency. Toys are also important when RVing with dogs. You may spend hours on the road in your motorhome. This is a relatively small space, and your puppy has a lot of energy. Even older dogs need exercise to stay healthy and happy. Pack your dog’s favorite toys and keep them nearby to make sure your pup gets plenty of exercise.

Couple eating outside their RV with a dog sitting nearby.

Etiquette for RVing With Dogs

Clean Up After Your Dog

RV camping with dogs includes a lot of time using shared spaces. It’s important to always clean up after your pet. Other people will be using these spaces and nobody wants to risk stepping in anything your pup might have left behind. In any situation, remember to bring plastic bags and always clean up after your dog. Keeping shared space clean is an essential part of campground etiquette.

Keep Your Dog Quiet

Some dogs are prone to barking at the slightest sound outside your RV or home, especially while RV camping with dogs. The best way to combat barking dogs is to take long walks or have playtime before you leave. This will ensure your dog is tired when you leave, meaning they’ll likely sleep most or all of the time you are gone. You can also play music or white noise to block out sounds outside of your RV and make RVing more peaceful.

Start RVing With Your Dog

RVing with dogs can be a rewarding experience. You and your dog will both be happier with less time apart on camping trips. You can RV with dogs and create a positive environment for both you and your pets. Using these tips, you can make RV camping with dogs enjoyable.

Are you ready to upgrade your RV?

Prepare to RV with your dog, or on your own, with an RV renovation from Bradd and Hall. We’ll help you choose pet-friendly materials when we make your custom couches, captain’s chairs and more. Contact us today to get started on your motorhome upgrade!