Pet-Friendly Motorhome Hire | Dog-Friendly Campervans Scotland
We have written this page to provide some guidance, tips, planning assistance and a resource to answer the common questions we are asked about taking your dog on a pet friendly motorhome hire. We hope you find it useful as you decide whether to take your pet on holiday with you. If you have already made the decision to bring your pet, then this page and other pages will help you make the most of planning your dog-friendly motorhome trip with your pet.
If you have any further questions or wish to seek advice on travelling with your pet please feel free to call or email us. We know from first hand experience how much more special the pet holiday will be if your dog has it all planned out for him.
For brevity we have used “him” instead of “her” or “it”. Hope you don’t mind.
- Why take your dog on a motorhome or campervan holiday?
- What will you and your dog love about it?
- What to expect on a pet friendly motorhome hire holiday?
- Living with your Dog in the motorhome
- Our tips for travelling with your pet
- The Law on carrying dogs and pets in motorhomes
- Dog friendly Campervans and Motorhomes – Layouts that work
- Dog friendly campsites
- What does it cost to take your Dog on a Campervan or Motorhome trip?
- Motorhome Hire Ideas if Travelling with Dogs
- Dog Walks
- Health and Safety Tips for travelling with your pet
Why take your dog on a motorhome or campervan holiday?
Dogs are an important part of every family. Being able to take them on holiday is every pet owners dream. Overseas holidays with your pets are becoming more and more difficult. Brexit has added an extra layer of complexity to taking your dog on a foreign holiday.
This is why we have made our business operation totally pet friendly. With one in four households in the UK owning a dog it seemed natural for us to offer pet friendly motorhomes for hire that are suited well to holidaying with your dog.
Many of our team are dog owners and have conducted many trips around Scotland in motorhomes with their dogs. We have also met hundreds of our customers and their dogs and had the joy of discussing their trips in detail. This real life motorhome experience combined with third party stories about trips has prompted us to share our advice on getting the most from your campervan or motor home friendly rental. Our hope is that you will find this page and many of our supporting pages of interest.
You and your dog will love it
Firstly, your dog is at his happiest when taking part in your outdoor pursuits. The big outdoors are the prime habitat for your motorhome and so it is with your dog. This is why motorhomes and dogs go hand in hand (or paw in paw – sorry had to be done). Massive empty beaches, long walks through forests, hill walks, forestry commission nature trails all sound like the to-do list your pet would approve of! And then there is you; the pack leader. If you are like us, then your enjoyment is enhanced when you see your dog having more fun. Open the motorhome door, head outside and that tail is wagging from the outset.
What to expect on a pet friendly motorhome hire holiday?
All our motorhome types are pet friendly. The quality and specification of the vehicle is no different should you wish to bring your pet. When you arrive with us your pet is welcome to join you during the check in and vehicle familiarisation process. We don’t want dogs in cars any longer than they need to be, especially so on sunny days. We also have pet safe areas in our building where your dog can comfortably wait while we take you though check in and briefing. Water bowls and treats are on standby. The same service applies when returning your vehicle. Ideally you want the dog to be the last member of the family entering the motorhome; once all the packing has been done.
Living with your Dog in the motorhome
Although floor space and general living space can be at a premium in your motorhome, all our vehicles have enough floor space to accommodate dog beds. All motorhomes have a walk through between the drivers and passenger seat in the cab area. When parked up this space is not used and becomes a perfect location for the dog to rest. Small and medium sized dog beds fit neatly in this area. It is out of the way so the dog feels comfortable and you are not tripping over him. Some customers keep the dog bed there when travelling too.
Other good locations for the dog to call his own are under the tables. The dinette tables create a safe “kennel” type location, with a roof over their head. Again this location works well when travelling too. Many crates or dog carriers can be positioned in this location too.
If you like having your dog secured to the seat belt buckle when travelling then there are many options open you with the travelling seats in the accommodation area. We request that protective throws are used to protect the upholstery if you wish the dog on the seats.
Our tips for travelling with your pet
- Feed your dog 2 hours or more before travelling to reduce the chance of your dog becoming nauseous.
- Pack their favourite bed, blanket and maybe a toy so they feel more at home. This will help them settle in quickly
- Empty the water bowl before driving. A common mistake made by all of us and only leads to rivers of water running along the floor.
- Ensure you have a ready supply of water and provide this to your dog at each stop
- Use the built-in reflective window blinds to protect your pet from direct sunlight.
- If leaving the dog in the motorhome unattended, please ensure windows and skylight vents provide fresh air and cooling. All our motorhomes have reflective window blinds for cab and living areas. These are very good at reflecting heat. Combined with good ventilation your animal will be at a comfortable temperature. Use your common sense here. If it is more than 20 degrees outside on a bright sunny day, with no wind or breeze, then the dog should not be left inside the vehicle.
- Stop every couple of hours to allow your pet to toilet and stretch his legs.
The Law on carrying dogs and pets in motorhomes
The law in the UK is defined in the highway code, rule 57. This is the same for cars and is not specific to transporting your dog in a motorhome or campervan. Rule 57 says that “When in a vehicle make sure dogs or other animals are suitably restrained so they cannot distract you while you are driving or injure you, or themselves, if you stop quickly. A seat belt harness, pet carrier, dog cage or dog guard are ways of restraining animals”
As mentioned above you will note that there are many areas where a crate or harness could be located as well as seat belt buckles that can be used with appropriate harnesses.
Dog friendly Campervans and Motorhomes – Layouts that work
The configuration of our motorhome and campervan fleet has been developed and tweaked over the years. We have a good idea what works well for all our main customer groups. Pet owners are an important client group to us, so we ensure our vehicles work well with their needs. So, whether you want our shorter motorhomes at 6 metres long or the more spacious 7.5 metre high top layouts you will find them well suited for travelling with your pet.
Our shorter 2-4 person Roller Team T-Line 590 may be only 6 metres long but it still has enough floor space to house most dog breeds. Two small dogs or one larger one will still fit easily in here. The separate shower cubicle may be ideal if you regularly return with a muddy mutt. We are happy for you to use these facilities but please be careful to ensure the drain does not get blocked with fur.
Window blinds throughout ensure this motorhome can be kept cool on summer days. The external locker can be used to keep muddy boots, leads, dog coats and food bowls. This way keeping the main living space tidy and clean.
Our 5 berth fixed master bed Roller Team Zefiro 696 has plenty of locations for your dog to settle into and call his own, without becoming a trip hazard. The standard height bed at the back may be suitable for well behaved clean pets to chill out. Where better for the humans and dogs to take a middle of the day nap to recover for all the outdoor activities. I mean, you are on holiday, and it is allowed. We request that protective rugs or throws are used on beds and any upholstery. The shower has it’s own space and makes it very easy to wash your dog and dry him off. The large external storage under the master bed at the back allows plenty of space for storing the multitude of items that come on holiday with the dog. Beds, balls, frisbees, leads, harnesses, towels… We know there is much more than just the dog that comes along. Nice to have the extra space, that’s out of the way.
Our larger 5 berth Roller Team 746 has the mid dinette area. This is popular with dogs wanting a space out of the way, that feels like a den. The large external storage under the seats at the back allows plenty of space for storing the multitude of items that come on holiday with the dog. Beds, balls, frisbees, leads, harnesses, towels… We know there is much more than just the dog that comes along. Nice to have the extra space, that’s out of the way.
Dog friendly campsites
We are very lucky in Scotland to have so many pet friendly campsites. Many of them are situated in areas where dog friendly beaches and off the beaten trails exist. The good campsites have thought this through and will have suggested walks that they can share with you. We are always amazed just how many dogs there are on these sites. The good ones have “off the lead dog runs” that are secure and away from traffic. Dog waste bins are regularly spaced and emptied often.
Campsites do charge for bringing a pet. It is most common for this to be a daily charge and only amounts to a few pounds per day. For the benefit of all site users they do have strict rules on keeping your dog on the lead and under control whilst on the site. It would be a surprise if they didn’t have this.
What does it cost to take your Dog on a Campervan or Motorhome trip?
We have a flat rate charge of £35 for customers bringing a pet. This is not per pet or per day. It’s the total charge and it is only in place to cover the additional costs of cleaning the motorhome after the hire. Apart from that and the additional costs at a campsite (if you use them) and you can see that it is not a lot at all.
These costs are far smaller than leaving your dog in a kennel or at an overnight dog boarding service. After reading this, why would you even consider using one of these services anyway?
Motorhome Hire Ideas if Travelling with Dogs
We have covered a bit of this already, however we feel this section may help you to plan your pet friendly motorhome rental. There are a number of resources on our website that will provide some routes and suggested itineraries. These may be specific to the route in question or a type of dog friendly activity. It is worth reading these as many will feature activities that are suitable for pets and will give you some ideas on where to go to get the most from your time travelling with your pet. For some ideas on broader routes and itineraries please visit our holiday ideas section
As this page is very focussed on the needs and wants of pets on holiday we will provide a few specific insights we hope you will inspire you.
Pet Friendly Beaches
We are not aware of many dogs that don’t love the beach. The soft sand, providing incredible grip and cushioning is ideal for the dog wanting to let off a bit of steam. And who can stop most dogs making the beeline for the crashing waves. Whether you want them to or not, there won’t be many commands that will stop them once they get the sight of that ocean. Once you have gotten over the inevitable realisation that they now have sand on them, and are wet, you may as well now just go with the flow and let them enjoy the rest of the time. At least you have the comfort knowing that a warm motorhome and shower facilities awaits you, to get them cleaned up and back to normal. Once washed and dried you can probably be assured of a dog that will be quite happy curling up and sleeping all the exertion off.
If you would like some iconic dog friendly beach ideas then this page is worth a read.
Pubs and Restaurants
In Scotland we are blessed with a dog friendly culture. The dog in the pub, next to a roaring fire, sleeping off an exciting day whilst his humans enjoy the food and drink of a local hostelry. This is a popular sight and makes the pub or restaurant appeal to all, not just dog owners. Quite a few of these establishments allow free overnight parking of motorhomes on their property as long as you use the restaurant or pub and spend some money with them.
Legal Notice: It is worth noting that you should not be over the legal blood alcohol limit in a motorhome if it is on the public highway or parked on the public highway. It is only allowed on private property (campsites, off street private parking etc, private land). Be aware of this before drinking alcohol whilst wild camping.
There are far too many locations to list any here. A couple of good websites are worth a look.
If your dog was reading this he would be getting more and more anxious as the topic of walks was not getting enough coverage. Well, here we are, at last. Scotland, the great outdoors, beckons and provides a dog playground.
With the sheer amount of walks it would be ambitious of us to try and list the thousands that exist. We do have a page that will scratch the surface and offer some pointers on best dog walks to do on a motorhome trip. Knowing that the walk is good is only half the story. It is helpful to know where to park the motorhome and where you can wild camp or campsite nearby. This new page is coming soon
Health and Safety Tips for travelling with your pet
It is a good idea to understand how to prevent ticks attaching to you and your dog, as well knowing the very simple but specific way to remove them if found. Please see our dedicated Tick resource page for some worthwhile and important advice.
Outdoor code – sheep etc
Most dog owners are responsible with their pets and keeping them under control. In the wide open spaces of Scotland it can be more difficult to spot dangers caused by other animals. Farmers and landowners do a great job fencing off livestock and putting up signs warning dog owners of risks. Please follow the guidance offered by these signs and any supporting leaflets you may come across. In such wide open spaces the last thing you want is your dog taking off after some animal and getting lost miles from you and in terrain he doesn’t recognise. There is also the risk that the landowner may have to shoot your dog to protect his animals.
Click here for more information on the Outdoor Access Code for dog walking
How to book your pet friendly hire?
Our online booking system has a section to add options to your hire. Use this options section to choose the “pet friendly vehicle available” option. You only need to click this once. Once clicked you will see it appear on your booking summary if you scroll the page back up. If you click it and it says no more are available it is because you have already clicked it. Our system only allows this item to be added once.