When our trusted pet sitter fell ill in late spring and had to cancel the dates we had reserved with her for this year, I kicked into emergency mode to figure out how to get to the important family events Jason and I had to attend in New York in June. I turned that stressful situation into last months unforgettable journey across the country with three dogs. I was so focused on making the trip to New York happen, I neglected planning for our yearly July pilgrimage to The Oregon Country Fair. I arrived home from Buffalo with just two weeks to find a qualified, available pet sitter for the only annual trip Jason and I take without the pets. I quickly realized that it wasn't going to happen. But instead of letting our current lack of a pet sitter mean we wouldn't go on our trip, I made a "No Dogs Allowed" trip into a pet-friendly vacation.
Finding Canine Fun While Humans Attend "No Dogs Allowed" Events
The first obstacle in my idea to bring the dogs along on our trip to Veneta, Oregon is that dogs are not allowed onto the fairgrounds during The Oregon Country Fair. So 'R' Blood on the Tracks Boys would need something fun to do each day from 11AM-7PM. Veneta is very close to Eugene and there are a few doggie day cares in the area. I narrowed down the options through researching reviews, speaking with staff, etc, and made a reservation. That was easy! Note: Jason and I had an agreement that if for any reason (the place was not what it seemed, the dogs didn't like it there, etc) we could not leave the dogs there. Our back up plans would be to either abandon going to The Fair altogether, enjoying a long weekend together in Oregon, or we would take turns attending the "No Dogs Allowed" event, one of us with the dogs and the other at The Fair.
The campground that we stay at every year during The Fair also does not allow dogs. I started my search for pet-friendly lodging with
The last part of adding the dogs to our trip was changing how I pack the car. I no longer needed to bring a camp shower since our pet friendly campground has showers but I needed to bring the dogs crates. There will be water available at our pet friendly campground so I don't have to haul drinking water but I do need to bring dog food, waste bags and treats.The most important thing I need to consider is that if Jason and I do not fill up enough on scrumptious food at The Fair, we can't just pop into any restaurant for a meal with the dogs in tow. So I needed to bring a small cooler and the single burner camp stove for just in case sandwiches, snacks and coffee.
While the friends and family we camp with at The Fair each year were disappointed that we had to change our plans, they were also impressed with how creatively and quickly I solved our "No Dogs Allowed" vacation problem. If all goes well, maybe we'll do this every year! I'm amazed that I continue learning that every experience I share with my dogs, even "No Dogs Allowed" events, are not just much more furry, but much more fun.