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Is your dog a travel buddy or a homebody?

Here in San Francisco we are heading into the best time of year for being outdoors. August brings mild temperatures, with cool mornings, then afternoon sunshine. Our dog friendly city is a favorite destination for travelers year-round, with San Francisco-based Kimpton hotels popular for people with pets. In late August, there is the San Francisco Giants Dog Days of Summer event, where you can bring your dog to the baseball game and a portion of the ticket proceeds benefits the SF SPCA. For some residents, we might be considering day trips to Napa, or longer getaways to Lake Tahoe or Carmel. However, for this girl and her old dog, August includes staycations and walks around the block.

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When we first adopted our dog, we hoped for a dog who would love to ride shotgun with us every weekend. Not only is San Francisco very dog-friendly, we are centrally located to many great outdoor adventures. Unfortunately, we quickly realized that our sweet girl did not enjoy car rides. She loved the destinations, but the journey has her stress-panting, and in the early years struggling to sit up or lay down the entire ride. It was as if she was on a sailboat, and trying to keep her eye on the horizon.

Enter Team Cleo

Though we've never taken any long road trips with our dog, there are times when we need to go somewhere that she cannot join us. This is when we call Team Cleo. They are a wonderful group of older retired empty nesters who adore Cleo. They each live about 20 minutes away. This wonderful set of households was created after we had Cleo stay with a friend when we were in Italy for a month. She told us afterward that during a block party at the house, Cleo became very popular with her friends, their kids, and all the neighbors. We soon had a series of households who eagerly asked to have Cleo visits and sleepovers. 

This was several years ago, but today we still call upon Team Cleo on occasion. When we do, we pull out her travel LL Bean monogramed tote. Into that goes her brushes, toys, Neosporin for any accidents, and treats. We also have a great all-in-one bag that is insulated to keep her food cool, but also big enough to have built-in water and food bowls. These two essentials make it really easy to pack and go, and makes it easy on Team Cleo to keep all her stuff together in their house. We also have a small laminated card with all vital information such as allergies, dog license number and our contact information, along with our vets, and nearby 24 hour pet hospitals.

More homebody than traveler

With Cleo a senior dog now, we keep her routine as simple as possible. Her poor vision makes it very important that she be familiar with her surroundings, and with her sensitive stomach, that we keep any upheaval to a minimum. I think we're doing something right because her confidence remains high. She is learning to use her nose more, and fortunately her hearing is as finely tuned as ever. Just ask the man in brown outside the house now. Cleo never was the road trip buddy we had hoped for, but you know, so what. Her Shepherd-Husky size and nature leans more towards patrolling the house, and making the neighborhood feel safe, and she gets high praise from her constituents. Just ask Team Cleo.

What's the farthest you've ever traveled with your dog? If you are unable to bring your dog along for the trip, do you have any tips for making sure they are safe and happy?

This post was written by a Nutro Knowledge Network Member and sponsored by the Nutro Company.

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