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How to Croak Alone in the Woods, Without Killing Your Pet

The marketing department here at the Institute for Advanced Recreational Studies barely approved of this post. "This isn't the topic to increase clicks," they tried to explain.

Still, the problem remains for a solo camper who wants their pet to survive their sudden and unexpected demise while camping alone. Just imagine the situation for a ranger or emergency personnel: they must bust into a rig, and what do they find? Pet urine and feces, and probably vomit. The pet might still be alive. They also encounter a partially eaten human carcass. If your pet is a dog, it would have actually felt bad about that. But what choice did it have?

Presumably, this would not look good on your pet's adoption resumΓ© at an animal rescue organization. Then again, a clever worker there might advertise, "Fluffie has shown herself to be self-reliant and resourceful..."

There is a solution available: a doggie door. Few products in this price range have improved the lives of owners and pets so much. The typical customer works long hours and doesn't want their poor dog to have to 'hold it' for 10 hours per day.  

I saw one of these doors in action at a friend's house. It was impressive how much her dog depended on it -- and liked it. Doggie doors are available at Lowe's, Home Depot, pet stores, online, etc. I bought the Ruff Weather model by Ideal Pet Products. 

Campers with cargo trailers have an advantage in installing a doggie door. But most campers have wives, who wouldn't be caught dead (oops) in such an unfashionable rig. But most conventional camper-trailers have flat surfaces, at least on the sides. All but the largest doggie doors would fit between the 16 inch studs of any conventional camper trailer, if you could find the studs. 

Rigs such as vans or Airstreams have curved surfaces that would complicate the installation of a doggie door. Perhaps thick enough weather stripping or even a curved board would accommodate the curve.

But does my Coffee Girl appreciate this improvement?  


  1. I love it.


  2. I have thought about this also and have read about pets stranded because of owners' untimely deaths in their RVs. I wonder about this situation, however. I assume you would not leave the doggie door unlatched during the night so as to prevent CG from leaving the warmth of your bed to frolic with coyotes, bears, etc. So, what happens if you "croak" during the night? The best laid plans...


    1. Chris, the doggie door stays OPEN whenever my dog and I are inside the trailer, including nights. I may put a rodent repellent outside the door. Or I could add a blinking LED light like I have in under the hood of my van. (It seems to work.)

      Coffee Girl will not leave in the middle of the night.

      I might slide in the locking panel when she and I BOTH leave the trailer.

    2. Good plan. My son's pug got out through the doggie door one night when they forgot to lock it. A coyote nearly killed her. Your situation reminded me of that near miss.


    3. I have met Coffee Girl and there is a BIG difference between her and a pug. I think she can hold her own against any coyote that might think they can take her.

  3. What a topic!
    Doesn't seem so bad to me to be eaten by one's beloved pet. After all, you'd be dead. What does it matter? I think I'd prefer my pet having to get over the necessity of relieving himself in quarters previously off limits and ensuring his safety from lions, tigers, and bears. Oh, my.

    It's just a body, you know. There's nothing in it that really belongs to you. It's all on loan and the due date is your last breath. Every atom in it came from somewhere else previously and every atom will go on to be somewhere else again no matter what.

    Wouldn't hurt to have someone check up on you every few days or so. A phone call. A text.


  4. George, your comment sounds like the same things that Socrates said to his disciples when he was getting ready to croak. But they would not follow his instructions.


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