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  • Writer's picturePeterson Insurance

Driver Preparedness: Roadtrips and Pets

Updated: Feb 28, 2023

Every year millions of travelers hit the road for adventure, rest and rejuvenation but along with that comes some risk of unfortunate occurrences. Best be prepared for the worst but expect the best! Peterson Insurance Group is ready and able to get you prepared and we'll keep you there for years to come.

If you're in need of a quick weekend getaway or a long-week vacation from home, a smart and affordable solution is a road trip! Normally, gas is cheaper than airfare, and you don't have to sit in those long lines at the airport or wait for a layover. It can be less stressful and more fun on the road…if you're prepared!

Use this checklist before embarking on your next road trip to make sure you have all of the essentials and avoid any mishaps or unexpected surprises on the way to your destination:

  • Copy of your insurance card. This item should already be in your car, but it's always good to double-check and make sure it's up-to-date.

  • Spare tire. Make sure it's in good condition before you leave!

  • Roadside emergency kit. This includes items like jumper cables, a tire pressure gauge, a flashlight, a window breaker, gloves, etc.

  • Cash. Sometimes you don't know where you're going to stop, and some stores may only take cash.

  • Water bottles. Stay hydrated! Having extra water on hand is very important, especially if you get stranded somewhere.

  • First aid kit. This should include supplies such as bandages, antiseptics and gauze pads.

  • Snow shovel and ice scraper… if traveling during the winter months! When driving through a snowy area, there's always the possibility of getting your car stuck, so these items are important to bring along.

  • Cellphone charger and extra battery pack. Your cell phone needs to have power at all times in case of an emergency. So take advantage of charging it in your car, and always have a fully charged battery pack on hand.

  • A blanket and travel pillow. If you are traveling with two or more people, it's likely you will take turns driving while the other one sleeps. Why not be comfortable while you're snoozing in the car?

  • Antibacterial hand wipes/body wipes. A shower isn't always possible on a road trip, so using body wipes may have to suffice!

  • Toiletries, toothbrush and toothpaste. Keeping up with good hygiene is still possible on road trips. Bring these along so you can freshen up at rest stops.

  • Car-friendly snacks. Everyone needs delicious snacks for long road trips! If you're not bringing a cooler along, bring non-perishable food items like fruit cups, granola bars and beef jerky.

  • Garbage bags. No need to trash your car during the ride. Fill them up and then dump the bags at a rest stop or gas station when needed.

We hope this list makes you feel more prepared for your road trip. And we hope you find rest, adventure or whatever else you're looking for on the open road! Of course, don't forget to take tons of pictures to capture memories of the fun along the way!

Be Prepared for your Pet

Pets are part of the family too! Be sure that you have the proper equipment to keep your pet secured and safe while riding in your vehicle. Unrestrained pets can cause dangerous distractions to drivers. More importantly, unrestrained pets can be injured severely in the event that an accident occurs.

You may opt to use a pet crate or carrier to keep your pet safe during travel, and it should be well-ventilated and large enough to allow your pet to stand, lie down and turn around comfortably. Properly secure your crate or carrier so that it does not slide or shift in the event of a sudden stop.

If crates or carriers don’t work well for your pet, it is recommended that you use a pet seat belt or harness attached to the vehicle’s seat belt. Depending on your pet’s size, you’ll want to investigate what kind is best. Regardless of what type of pet you have, you should never put your pet in the front seat of your vehicle, as they could be seriously injured if an airbag deploys during an accident.

Pack Appropriately

Remember to pack extra supplies for your pets. Items you might need to pack include:

  • Water (bottled water is recommended), food and bowls

  • Toys or blankets

  • Bed or cushion for overnight stays

  • Leash, collar and ID tag

  • Medications

  • Waste disposal supplies, including a scoop, bags, litter and tray

  • First aid supplies and grooming items

  • If you’re planning to cross state lines, pack documents like a Certificate of Veterinary Inspection and/or veterinary records

During Your Trip

While you’re driving, remember that your pet needs frequent breaks too. Try to stop every two to three hours to let your pet get a drink of water, some exercise and a chance to relieve themselves. During your stops, be sure that your pet has their collar on (including ID tag), with a leash attached. If you need to stop and can’t bring your pet with you, remember that a hot car can be a dangerous place for any animal. Minimize stops where pets are left alone in the car, especially in the heat of the summer.

Even in comfortable temperatures, leaving your pet in the car for an extended period of time might not be the best idea, as you never know how they might react. There’s always a chance that Rover might get frustrated and use your vehicle’s seats as a chew toy, so try to take your pet with you whenever possible.

Before heading out on the open road, let Peterson Insurance Group assist you in being more prepared and ready so we can everyone on the adventure safe! Contact us today to get started.


Peterson Insurance Group is a family-owned and operated independent insurance agency representing multiple companies located in Weaverville, NC. Founded in 2001, the company is owned by Eirene Peterson-Burnette, the successor to the founder, Stom Peterson. Together, with her team, Peterson Insurance provides exceptional, personal service guiding customers through the maze of insurance options. Visit us at 1 South Main Street Extension, Weaverville, NC 28787 or call 828-645-8777.


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