RVing with dogs when you’re a solo RVer is such a great way to live. My dog keeps me busy and keeps me company. He’s also responsible for most of the exercise I get every day. Murphy is my early warning system too. He hears and sees things long before I do.
When I sent out my first newsletter, I included a short survey. Many of you wanted me to include more about Murphy, my RVing dog, and co-pilot in my posts so I decided to write one specifically about him.
RVing with Dogs Who Don’t Like Car Or Truck Rides
Murphy was four months old when he joined our family. On the very first car ride, he got car sick. That’s not a great start for a pup who had just started a new life as a full-time RVing dog.
He never really got over his car sickness but I’ve learned how to keep it under control. I always keep the back window open so he can get fresh air and I feed him a little something so his tummy isn’t empty. We also stop for walks and water fairly often. If you’re RVing with dogs who get carsick, keep these tactics in mind.
He really doesn’t like to ride and is often reluctant to “load up” when we are getting ready to take off. Once we take off and he gets settled in it would be easy to forget he’s back there. He’s very quiet and mostly lays down the whole time. On long, long travel days I feel bad about making him ride so long. Our longest day ever was 620 miles. That’s a long day.
Walking Murphy Is A Nightmare
When Murphy was about a year old we sent him to doggie boot camp. My one serious issue with his behavior was walking him. He’s a leash puller and at 80 pounds, he can really pull me wherever he wants.
On one particular walk, he got really excited because there were other people within view and actually managed to knock me over. I cracked a rib in that fall. That sealed the deal and we sought a good trainer. When you’re RVing with dogs, sometimes they have to walk on a leash.
It’s a very long story but he still doesn’t walk very well for me. When he heels, he gets so close to my leg that I feel like I’m going to trip on him. I prefer to walk him off heel but if he sees something he wants like a person or a squirrel, it’s all over. I’ve had brush-up lessons with the trainer, tried a head harness, etc.
He’s really good when he walks for anyone else. Honestly, after 6 years I’ve given up on this and just do the best I can. One of the reasons I prefer boondocking is I don’t have to try to walk him around a crowded campground on a leash. When we walk on BLM land and can do so safely, he’s usually off-leash.
In every other way, he’s so well behaved for me. Nobody’s perfect, right?
Murphy was trained by OffLeash K9 Training.
RVing With Dogs Who Are Hunters
Murphy being half Poodle and half Golden Retriever is a hunting dog. He’s very reactive to squirrels and rabbits and we see them often wherever we go.
A couple of years ago right here on my brother’s property we were walking up in the back pasture and he took off into the trees. I heard a yip and he came running back. I looked him over and didn’t see any damage so we continued on with our walk.
Later that evening I noticed he had two puncture wounds inside his rear thighs. We think he spooked a buck and got the horns as he was retreating. That earned him a few stitches.
We do have wildlife here on the property. There are deer, coyotes, rabbits, and bear here. I try to keep a sharp eye on him. One of his favorite pastimes is chipmunk hunting. If he spots one around my truck, he’ll race over and trap the poor thing in the undercarriage then try to get at it for as long as I’ll let him. After a while, I’ll put him inside for a bit so it can escape.
When you’re RVing with dogs, particularly when you’re boondocking, keep a sharp eye out for wildlife.
Murphy Hates To Have His Picture Taken
I know there are a lot of pictures of Murphy on the blog but those photos are random shots he happens to be in. It takes a lot of work to get him to let me take a photo. He always looks away from the camera. You’d think a celebrity RVing dog would enjoy having his picture taken. Stinker
Murphy Gets Very Weird At My Daughter’s House
(But only when I’m there)
When we are at my daughter’s house Murphy shows some very strange behavior. He does things he would never do anywhere else. He steals and destroys toys mostly. The kids always have to do what they call a “Murphy sweep” before we come in. We are constantly having to take things away from him.
The thing is, if I’m not there he’s very well behaved. We haven’t figured out why but it can be very trying for me. Nerf darts are one of his favorites but anything is fair game. Anything…
Murphy Is A Kleptomaniac
Murph likes to steal things. Yep, you read that right, Murphy takes things that aren’t his. He goes to the neighbor’s house and takes their dog’s toys and bones. He goes over to the neighbor’s house on the other side and takes their little dog’s bed.
He has stolen yard ornaments from my sister-in-law, my socks and panties, even an empty box from the neighbor’s barn. The boy has plenty of toys and bones of his own. Fortunately, everyone around here loves him and just laughs when I return something.
Murphy The RVing Dog Is a Master of The Side-Eye
I’ll just drop a couple of photos here so you can see what I mean.
Murphy Travel Stats
Murphy has been a full-time RVing dog for over 6 years now. He has traveled more than 70,000 miles by RV and has been to the entire lower 48 states. He’s a pro traveler.
Yep, he’s a quirky handful but I can’t imagine life without the smartest clown dog I’ve ever known.
You might also like, 6 Tips For How To Easily RV With Pets.
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