The Best Road-Trip Pawtner
In the summer of 2018, 24 year-old Parker Wilson decided to take some vacation time from his career as a firefighter to fulfill his dream of road-tripping Canada with his four-legged best friend, Oakley a two-year old Vizsla.
Outfitted with a yellow, vintage 1980 Volkswagen camper van, Parker packed himself and Oakley a bag full of the necessities, which obviously included peanut butter and some chew toys and then set off for their two week adventure.
They drove 3,905KM from Caledon, Ontario all the way to Kelowna, British Columbia. The trip consisted almost entirely of hiking, swimming and exploring dog friendly breweries. Every evening after sunset, Parker and Oakley would retreat back to their camper to curl up together to recharge for another day full of new adventures.
Parker describes one of the most essential qualities a pet owner can have while travelling with their dog is patience. You need to ensure you plan ahead and give yourself more time than normal because your dog still needs to follow their daily routine.
“Every time I stopped to get gas or have something to eat, I would make sure he got an opportunity to stretch his legs. If Oakley was getting restless, I knew I had to pull over so he could sniff, run and do his business. You can’t expect to travel with a high energy dog and make the same time you would on your own.”
However, Parker says that devoting the extra time is definitely worth it. Oakley provided opportunities for Parker to socialize with people that otherwise he wouldn’t have interacted with. Oakley also gave him lots of company, whether it was at night keeping each other warm or during a desolate stretch of the drive. Nevertheless, Parker stated that the best part of having Oakley on the trip was the happiness he felt while watching Oakley live his best life sprinting through mountain trails or paddling in glacial rivers. Watching an overjoyed Oakley was better than the views of the Okanagan Valley.
Parker is counting down the days until he can do another road trip with his best friend, but emphasizes that heavy planning should be considered before taking off. This includes planning routes, food and budget. Road tripping in a camper van is definitely a cost-efficient method of travel and very pet friendly but Parker said gas prices set him back quite a bit.
To help Parker and other owners aspiring to travel with their furry mates, you can apply for a No Fee BMO® OSPCA AIR MILES®† Mastercard®*.Not only will you save 3¢ per litre at Shell gas stations until October 31st 2019, but with every purchase you make, you will be supporting the life- saving work done at the Ontario SPCA and Humane Society. Already have a BMO OSPCA AIR MILES Mastercard? Pawsome! Simply opt in to save 3¢ per litre by visiting bmo.com/fuel and help reduce the burden of gas prices!
Travelling with your pet is a life changing opportunity that should never be restrained by a fuel gauge. Visit www.bmo.com/ospca to take the first step towards planning your trip on four wheels with your four legged best friend.
* Terms and conditions apply. Visit bmo.com/partner for more details. ® Registered trademark of Bank of Montreal. ®* Mastercard is a registered trademark, and the circles design is a trademark of Mastercard International Incorporated. Used under license. ®† Trademarks of AM Royalties Limited Partnership used under license by LoyaltyOne, Co. and Bank of Montreal.
Hats off to you
To all kind-hearted and hard-working people at SPCA: hats off to you. I love animals and admire the work you do.