Imagine this: You’ve just received your new orders. You mentally begin conjuring a logistical plan-how are you going to get from point A to point B?

But wait! you have furry friends to think about. How will you feed your dog? Where will you stay? Maybe a little bit of panic ensues because you realize you must drive cross country with your pups.
Suddenly, the bags are packed, and boxes loaded. Now the adventure begins!

As a military wife of thirteen years, I have had to PCS multiple times with multiple dogs to multiple destinations. I have found that the key to any PCS move with pups is preparation. Our dogs, Miley and Sampson, had become PCS pros too. Moving east to west, west to east, south to north, north to south, all directional. But for some pups, a road trip can be challenging for them (and their owners).

During our many moves, we made sure our pups had their bags “packed” to include bowls, a comfortable place to lay, collar, leash, treats, and of course, the poop bags! At the top of our PCS to-do list was always making hotel reservations.

We always wanted to make sure that we had a hotel secured that could accommodate us and our canine companions. It can be challenging trying to figure out an itinerary to include only stopping at pet friendly locations.

Thankfully, however, many hotels are pet friendly and try to make their canine guests feel at home.

Goodie bags for pets

One of our hotels, Tru by Hilton, even provided a doggy bag which included treats and toys among other goodies.

If you and your family are preparing to relocate this PCS season, here are some tips and tricks to help the move be easier for you and your pup!

PCS with Pets● Consult your veterinarian to see if your dog is healthy for travel.

● Always make sure your pup is secured via leash. Sometimes nature calls and you may find
yourself pulled over near a busy road or at an unplanned destination. Even if your furry friend is
a canine genius, dogs can get spooked during travel- the fear of new surroundings and a general
sense of “change” could have your dog acting out of normal.

● To avoid constant clean up, paper bowls are good for hotel stays with your pup. Plus, one less
thing to carry back to the car.

● Make sure your dog has plenty of space to turn and move around in your car.

● Give your dog frequent breaks-not only to relieve himself, but to stretch those cute furry legs!

● Be aware of the temperature. For example, traveling across the desert during the summer,
when most PCS moves occur, can be brutally hot. Make sure your dog is cool and stays
hydrated. Enroute to a chillier spot? Grab some extra blankets to get your dog warm.

● Pack plenty of bottled water to give your dog at each pit stop.

● Be patient! At this point, you are probably over the whole moving process (trust me, I get it!)
and ready to get to where you are going! Remember to be patient with your dog who might be
confused, scared, or even car sick.

● Be aware of other guests if you are staying at a pet friendly hotel. Just because it is pet friendly
does not mean every guest is.

And most importantly- happy travels to you and your military pup!

Pet Friendly Hotels*

PCS with Pets

1). Tru by Hilton
2). Hampton by Hilton
3). Westin
4). Homewood Suites
5). Springhill Suites
6). Courtyard by Marriott
7). Hyatt Place

*Be sure to check for location and size restrictions.


By: Tracy Gardner
IMCL Social Media Manager & Assistant


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