Thursday, March 23, 2023



Tips on traveling RV pets


photo: arkportablepower on

By Chuck Woodbury
Most American campgrounds welcome pets. Most often there is no additional charge beyond the regular campsite fee, but many commercial RV parks charge an extra fee per night, per pet.

While there are few formal rules about camping with pets, most campgrounds do require that pets remain on a leash or be otherwise contained. Many campers bring along a portable pet fence that can be easily opened up at a campsite to allow a pet some freedom and fresh air without being leashed. Amazon sells these.

Most RV parks that allow pets set aside a plot of ground or grass for use as a “pet  potty.” RVers are asked to clean up after their pets. Most roadside rest areas also provide such pet areas, which most often double as an off-leash area where a pet can run and sniff to its heart’s content.
Pets are common traveling companions, especially for RVers. Perhaps a third of them bring along a pet or two, most often a dog, but also cats and even caged birds. We have seen a few bunnies, including one being walked on a leash at an Idaho rest area.

The biggest complaint from campers without pets about those with them is uncontrolled dog barking. Some owners leave their campsites to sightsee, hike, fish or shop, and leave their dogs alone inside their RV or tied up outside for hours on end. Fellow campers are often forced to endure barking and howling until the owners return, a terribly frustrating and even maddening experience for those who must endure the noise.

Even though many campgrounds accept dogs, sometimes they do not welcome all dogs. Jack and Julee Meltzer, authors of “Camping and RVing with Dogs,” believe the best advice for RVers with pets is to always call a campground before showing up with their furry friend. “It may state in a campground directory that a place is dog-friendly, but that may not necessarily be true,” said Julee Meltzer. “It’s not unusual for an RVer to arrive with a large animal only to be told, ‘Oh, we only accept dogs less than 25 pounds.’” has a very comprehensive list of pet-friendly campgrounds worldwide.

Pet owners should also use caution in leaving their pets outside overnight. Rangers at Death Valley National Park keep a tally of such animals that end up as a tasty midnight snack for a hungry coyote.




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Marilyn Sanborn
5 years ago

As a pet owner my husband an I are very frustrated with animal owners do NOT pick up after their dogs, it makes it hard for those of us that are responsible pet owners, we always pick up after our pet (and yours too if I see it)! We are on our way back from Arizona & staying overnight in a lovely little park just off I5 which shall remain nameless. The people next door have a very lovely little controlled dog as do we, the lady across NOT!! Her Chi was barking up a storm, not sure at what, but said dog was being held in the owners arms barking its’ fool head off, did she do anything to stop the barking, no!! Please do not let your dog bark, a firm (not hard) grip of the muzzle until it stops & every time it barks works, it will eventually get the picture. I understand why some parks do not allow dogs however it is disappointing for those of us who have trained our dogs to be well mannered. And that is my rant for the day?

5 years ago

Sorry but a campground or rv park that advertises that it is “pet friendly ” but charges extra for a pet and or limits the number or size, IS NOT PET FRIENDLY!

5 years ago

Many campgrounds can also have breed restrictions. A KOA in Montana declined our neutered French Bulldog because they insisted his was part of the pitbull family. Which is wrong and ridiculous. Glad I called ahead and we will not stay there (even when Haunz is no longer with us).

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