10 Tips You Need to Know About Trucking With Pets
According to a Harris Poll survey, over 60 percent of over-the-road truck drivers are pet owners. Nearly half of these drivers take their pets with them on the road thanks to pet rider programs like you’ll find here at Carter Express. Bringing your furry family member with you while you drive can help reduce stress levels, offer companionship and add an extra measure of safety. So what exactly do you need to know before you take your pet along on the job? Here are some tips for trucking with a pet on board:
- Know the rules. If you’re considering bring a pet with you on the road, the most important thing is to know whether or not it’s something your company allows. Not all trucking companies allow pets. At Carter Express, we’re proud to offer a pet rider policy as one of our many great driver benefits. We require a $500 pet deposit and a signed Pet Rider Policy before you can take your pet on the road.
- Size matters. Larger dogs generally need more space and exercise. Choosing a smaller pet will leave you more space for food and water bowls, pet bed or crate, and for both of you to move around. Our Carter Express pet policy requires that your pup be 30 pounds or less. While cats are smaller pets, our policy does not allow them.
- Safety first. Having a pet in your truck means you’ll need to take some additional safety measures to keep you, your pet and others on the road safe. It’s important to make sure that your pet can’t interfere with your driving. Block off access to your foot pedals and steering wheel. If your pet is riding in the front seat, use a harness or tethered crate to secure them. Additionally, your pet should never be allowed to ride on your lap while driving.
- Plan to stop often. Dogs need bathroom breaks every few hours. They’ll also need plenty of exercise, so it’s important that you’re committed to walking them regularly throughout the day.
- Hydration is key. Just like it’s important for you to stay hydrated in order to do your job well, your pet will need plenty of fresh, clean water on the road. Pack extra water in your truck – you never know when you’ll be somewhere that lacks water safe for drinking.
- Prioritize pet health. It’s important to stay up to date on your pet’s vaccines and visits to the veterinarian. When carrying your pet across state lines, you’ll need to carry proof of vaccination and health records. You’ll also want to make sure your pet wears a collar with contact and rabies information or have them microchipped. At Carter, we also require that you submit a current copy of your pet’s vaccination and health records.
- Plan ahead for meals. Always make sure you have plenty of your pet’s food for the entire trip. You never know when you’ll have access to a pet store to buy more. If you feed your pet fresh meals, you’ll need to set aside time at home to prepare them and then come up with a plan to store them in your freezer or refrigerator while on the road.
- Get experience first. The idea of bringing your pet with you on the road can be an exciting one if you’re a new driver, but it’s important that you focus on gaining driving experience first. You have a lot of responsibility as a new driver. Make sure you have several months of experience under your belt and are completely comfortable driving, maintaining your truck and caring for your load before you take your pet on the road with you.
- Not every pet is a good fit. If your dog dislikes riding in the car, experiences car sickness, or has severe anxiety when traveling, then it’s possible that riding with you in your truck isn’t the best fit for them. As much as you want to take them along, it’s also important to consider that it’s not always possible for every pet.
- Don’t forget the extras. Treats and toys add to the happiness of your pet. Make sure you have some of both to keep them feeling loved and entertained.
For more information about opportunities or other advantages at Carter Express, connect with us today!