Holiday tips - the dog-friendly holiday checklist

Here's everything you need to know before going on a dog friendly holiday!

Here at BorrowMyDoggy, we know that a holiday simply isn’t a holiday without your four-legged friend in tow – after all, they’re as much part of the family as anyone else. We can also all agree that going away without them can sometimes be a stressful experience. 


That’s why we have partnered with Canine Cottages – a dog-friendly cottages brand whose properties are crammed full of more Fido-friendly features than you can wag a tail at. They’re also run by a bunch of people who are just as barking mad about dogs as we are. Your biggest problems will be choosing just one cottage from the fantastic selection of properties available as well as ensuring you’ve packed everything you need for your precious pal.


We’ve created a handy checklist so you can remember to take all your pup’s favourite things with you when you’re away from home, travel stress-free and focus on getting on with the adventures. We’ve also included a few top tips for hassle-free travelling along the way.


BorrowMyDoggy dog on the edge of a boat with their paws near the water
Doggy member Duke

Packing for your pup


  1. Collar and name tag – essential if your pup should go wandering. You could even get an additional one engraved or print a small label with the name of your accommodation and mobile number so you can be reunited faster. Some of the Canine cottages even provide additional tags for you.
  2. Long and short leads – on holiday, your pup will need the freedom to roam the wide-open spaces, but there may also be times, on cliff-top walks or dog-friendly attractions where your dog needs to be under tighter control.
  3. Bed / basket along with a favourite blanket – even when the property is ultra dog-friendly, your canine pal will still need somewhere to sleep, and a bed brought from home will give that added sense of home.
  4. Food / water and bowl as well as travel bowl and treats – as well as their usual feeding bowls and mats if they are mucky pups, it’s also well worth investing in collapsible travelling water and food bowls and some bottled water for rehydration on the go.
  5. Dog poo bags – probably a no-brainer, as when your dog has got to go, they’ve got to go and it’s a dog owner’s (or borrower’s) duty to keep our beautiful outdoor spaces clean for everyone to enjoy.
  6. Dog toy – going on holiday without your dog’s favourite toy would be like forgetting baby’s favourite blanket. A collection of balls for those long walks in the country or on the beach is also crucial as is a chew toy to keep them entertained in more contained environments.
  7. Towels/old sheet – as you’re on holiday, you’ll no doubt spend much of your time exploring every puddle, lake, beach, field and woodland so you’ll need to be able to wipe down muddy fur or sandy paws before returning to your holiday cottage.
  8. Stain remover – always a good thing to have no matter how well trained your pet is – if in unfamiliar circumstances or on a long car trip, accidents can happen so it’s best to be prepared.
  9. Pet hair roller and brush – this is essential if you have a pet who sheds a lot of hair and it goes without saying that your pet will want to look his or her best on holiday and enjoy a bit of pampering – especially after a walk in the rain.
  10. Address book / contacts app – just in case, it’s always handy to keep some useful contacts when you’re away – not least, the number of the accommodation and a local vet.



BorrowMyDoggy dog wet from coming out the sea
Doggy member Soda

Top tips


Top tip #1 – read up before you go


Research your destination before you go so you can plan what you might get up to well in advance- this will also help you to know what facilities are available beforehand should you forget anything key.


Top tip #2 – get your pet to the vet


Book in for a quick check-up with the vet before travelling – especially if you’re venturing far from home to put your mind at ease before you set off on your adventures. You should also check where the nearest vets is to your holiday home. Don’t forget to pack any medicines that your dog may need.


Top tip #3 – protect your four-pawed pal


Make sure you have adequate pet insurance in place should anything go wrong whilst you are away. Taking a borrowed dog? Not to worry, all premium members are covered by Accident and Third Party Liability Insurance, so your mind can be put at ease.


Top tip #4 – on the road!


When travelling in the car, you must make sure they are properly restrained so that they cannot distract you and they certainly shouldn’t be in the front seat. Invest in a seat belt restraint, pet carrier or cage – as much for their safety as yours. 


Top tip #5 – riding with Rover


If your pooch isn’t used to being in the car, make sure you get them used to it well in advance – you could start by simply allowing them to explore whilst the car is parked and the engine switched off before gradually building up to short, followed by longer journeys.


Top tip #6 – new surroundings


Don’t leave your dog alone in the car or in your new holiday home – the strange, new surroundings may make them feel uneasy. You can also invest in calming mists and sprays which can help reduce your dog’s anxiety as well as surrounding them with items from home.


Top tip #7 – keep them safe


Don’t forget it is now a legal requirement to have your dog microchipped; this coupled with the fact that you may be travelling to a brand-new destination means you have less to worry about should they wander off.


BorrowMyDoggy Border Terrier in the forest
Doggy member Benji



Of course, despite having a ball on your dog-friendly trip, there may be times when you might want to enjoy an evening to yourself – as a member of BorrowMyDoggy, you can get in touch with one of our local borrowers wherever you may be, safe in the knowledge that your pup is being well-cared for. We always recommend that you get to know borrowers really well before they borrow your pup. 


So, what are you waiting for? 2020 is absolutely the time to have a ball with the whole pack! Get yourself over to those dog-loving people at Canine Cottages and have a sniff through their amazing pawtfolio of dog-friendly holidays. Whether you want to lounge by the wood burner in a rural retreat or expend boundless energy on coastal walks before returning to a grand manor house for a large group getaway, they’ve got something to suit every size, shape and breed. They even have properties for multiple mutts that run rings around the rest – you’ll wonder why you ever holidayed without your hound.

Join BorrowMyDoggy

BorrowMyDoggy connects dog owners with local volunteer borrowers for walks, holiday care and dog sitting. It’s simple, affordable and safe.

All members take our safety checks before connecting and membership includes access to a 24/7 Vet line and accident and third-party liability insurance.

Learn more and get started