The Trucking life can be a lonely life, sitting in a cab by yourself all day, with nothing but the open road ahead. Even for the most solemn and introverted of people this situation could be maddening. If this is something that plagues you, I have the perfect solution for you: Get yourself a furry friend for the passenger’s seat! That’s right, Man’s Best Friend makes for a wonderful companion for those long hauls, they may even howl along to the radio with you. While I feel like with the right training and patience, any dog would be a great prospective co-driver, but I think that there are some qualities that make some more suitable to the road. Here are somethings to think about:
Obviously, while they can be roomy for one person, truck cabs don’t tend to be the biggest homes away from home. Throw a dog in there and it could remind you of a sardine can. So if space is an issue for you, a breed like the Great Dane, probably wouldn’t be your first choice. While I love Great Danes dearly, they are ENORMOUS. Toy breeds, like Pugs or Yorkie’s, are great in confined spaces, and because of their size, easily controlled in this type of environment, and even better, most hotels don’t mind small dogs.
Lauren’s Choice: Chihuahua
- Energy Level
The Freight Moving profession is timed down to the minute, meaning, if it doesn’t fit the schedule then, “Oh well.” This is an important thing to think about when choosing a dog breed to be your companion. Higher energy breeds may require more play time and attention and trying to provide for this need may be more of a stress-or than a relief as we all want the best for our four legged friends. Great low energy breeds that will be content to sleep next to you through all those miles are both the French and English Bulldogs. Make sure when picking a dog you do your research, it may be better to have your pup lounging in the sleeper all day, rather than bouncing off the dashboard.
Lauren’s Choice: Basset Hound
Nobody wants to walk up to a Pick Up or Drop Off looking like a walking talking furball, and there are some breeds out there that might make the floor of your cab look like shag carpet with how much they shed. This is something you want to think about, especially if you have sensitive sinuses. Some wonderful choices for this issue are the Scottish Terrier and the Dachshund. There are many breeds out there that are high maintenance when it comes to their upkeep. Since many drivers have that tight schedule to keep, a poodle, as intelligent as they are, may not be the best choice. While all dogs need a little grooming, non-diva breeds include the Boston Terrier and the Miniature Pinscher. Just a side note, make sure you do your homework if you do take your dog to a groomer. Finding the right groomer is just as important as finding the right Vet.
Lauren’s Choice: Beagle
Because you’re going across country in many different routes, loyalty and attachment is a big deal. Make sure that the breed you decide on is a breed prone to devotion to their owners. While all dogs have their dispositions, it seems to me that breeds like the Boxer and Pitbull, yes the Pitty, when raised well and trained according to their characters, are attached at the hip to their owners (I know from experience, as my fur baby is currently a Boxer/Pitt mix.). These types of dogs really tap into your emotions as well as they pay close attention to your behavior and the environment around you, keeping you safe, and giving you a big old lick when you’re feeling down. Here’s another side note: I’m not normally a proponent of microchipping due to alleged health complications, but in this scenario it is definitely something to deeply consider.
Lauren’s Choice: Redbone Hound
While, in theory, training and raising a dog in the environment that it will regularly reside in is a pretty swell idea, but I don’t know how prudent it would be to house break a puppy in a truck cab, also puppies come with a ton of energy! Older dogs, (2 years and older) are a wonderful choice. So here is my shameless ploy: ADOPT ADOPT ADOPT! Many people believe that a puppy will be more loyal because it has been with you the entire life, but believe it or not, rescue dogs will be just as loyal if not more because, guess what, you saved them! Many of these dogs, ranging across many breeds, have been abandoned or abused and want nothing more to go on your OTR adventures and love you!
Lauren’s Choice: Rescue Dogs
If you are considering a Fluffy Companion, I hope these thinking points help! These are factors that many don’t consider when taking a dog over the road, and in my opinion, can also make or break the experience. I also would strongly suggest a rescue dog. While there are many pure breeds in need, there are also many mutts that need a home too, and it doesn’t matter if that home is a truck cab or a mansion, as long as they have someone to love!