- Kelsey Hansen
How to Travel with Raw Pet Food
There are many different ways people can travel with raw food. For example, using a reliable cooler, bringing dry ice, feeding freeze-dried raw food, and so on. This is my experience with feeding my dog raw food while traveling.
What we brought with us:
Raw meals in Ziploc bags
A regular cooler with just ice and 3 raw meals in it
A Yeti cooler with 9 (2.5 pound) raw meals
I originally planned on bringing dry ice with us, but we were in too much of a rush most days to stop and find some. We were on the road constantly, driving close to 4500 miles. We would refill and replace the ice we had with the ice machine at our hotels. I always put ice in gallon freezer bags so when the ice melted there wasn’t water everywhere. We were lucky enough to stay at one hotel for a few days that had a large freezer. So we would take the raw meals out of the coolers put them in the freezer.
The only issue we had while traveling with raw food was using a regular cooler. I wasn’t too optimistic about the regular cooler, but I wanted to see how long the food would stay frozen. I found that a regular cooler will not leave food frozen for more than 24 hours, even if it’s mostly filled with ice. I didn’t mind that the 3 raw meals thawed, because those meals stayed cold. Those were still fine to feed for the first 3 days. You don’t have to buy the expensive Yeti brand cooler. However, this cooler is what made the raw food stay frozen for a full week. There are other coolers out there such as Orca, Engel, and Artic that are made similar to Yeti and much more affordable! We borrowed the Yeti cooler from a friend for this trip. Once we got back from our trip we realized how valuable a cooler was and invested in an Artic cooler. This is much cheaper than Yeti. A year later, we have used it countless times and have found that a Artic cooler works just as well as a Yeti and has the same design.
Paper Plates, Gloves, and Ziploc Bags:
We fed our dog on paper plates and used gloves while feeding. Each ingredient in the raw meal was in a separate small Ziploc bag. Then the entire meal for one day was put into a 1 gallon freezer Ziploc. This was to prevent any leaking into the cooler. These items were easiest to throw away. We wouldn’t have been able to properly clean and store plastic containers.
We brought cleaning spray and paper towels when we fed our dog on the tile of the hotel while it was raining. We didn’t want to leave the floors messy in case some food got off of the plate. Most days we fed our dog outside on the grass.
Overall, I would say to invest in a nice cooler such as the ones mentioned above, bring items that are easy to throw away, and use dry ice. This was very easy to feed our dog raw food on the road.
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