rving with pets

Pet Friendly RV with Dr. Fitz on 'Paws on Board'

Welcome to “RVing Today TV’s” “Paws on Board.” I’m Dr. Fitz, we’re here with Max Keagle from Coachman RV, and of course, our dog friend, Zoey. Max, welcome to “Paws on Board.” Max Keagle: Thanks for having me.

We’re talking about RV’s that have pet-friendly features. So, today we’re looking at the Coachman RV Northern Spirit, and Northern Spirit is a travel trailer– and it really includes a lot of unique features that are great for pets, things that are really gonna help make the camping trip easier and more fun for the whole family. Whether it’s having more space for the pets to move around or just using those little things to get things done, I think you’re gonna really like the features that we have inside the Northern Spirit.

Let’s go inside and you can show us some of those features. All right, Max, we’re in the Northern Spirit here. What are some of the basic things that you guys have added to this unit to make it friendly for dogs like Zoey?

We made sure that we have lots of open space in our living areas. We’re making sure that our bunk areas are nice and big in case, you know, the pets wanna sleep with the kids at night.

Max: Exactly, so we’re always trying to think of even different kinds of aspects for pet-friendly features. And then, of course, you have your simple things too. We do include dog bowls. They’re actually hidden away underneath our dinette here, which is really nice, so they’re up and out of the way. We have a lot of storage needs that are really well met for your pets, like our walk-in pantries are great for those big bags of dog food. We even have a cargo center in the back that’s perfect for dog crating. You can access it from the inside or the outside. We’ve even had stories from owners who create ramps on the back door so that the pets can just walk right up the ramp into the crate at the end of the day. There’s a lot of really creative things.

We always say once it’s your unit, it’s your unit, and every pet has different needs. So, we want to make sure that we have things that are broad enough to appeal to all different types of pets, all different shapes and sizes, but, you know, that are simple to use. So, another really great thing that we’re doing is our dog leash clips on the outside. Northern Spirit was one of the first in the industry to have those dog-leash clips, and now we’ve got ’em on both sides of the trailer. We actually have it on both sides because we also have an outside dog wash, and it’s actually really nice. So, there’s a quick-connect water port right there, so you plug your hose in, and you can spray down your dog. By having the dog-leash clip there on that side, you’re able to make sure that they’re staying in one spot and frees up two hands so that you can give  proper bath.

And, speaking of baths, we actually also have a really nice bathroom in most of our units that include tubs. And not always, sometimes you need to actually give a full scrub-down bath, and it’s really nice to have a tub inside.

Right now, we’re standing inside of a Northern Spirit 2963, and this floor plan actually is nice because there’s a mud room built in. There’s an actual entrance from the outside into the bathroom, a big tub so you can do a nice bath in there, and that way you’ve got a nice little buffer between the dirty outside and then your living area on the inside.

Dr. Fitz: Perfect, you don’t have them kind of running through getting your RV all muddy. I guess even if that happened, it looks like some things in here are meant to be easy cleanup for a dog.

Maintenance is a huge part of owning an RV in general, and then when you add pets to the mix, there’s gonna be all sorts of extra dirt and claws and things like that. So, you know, starting at the bottom, we do use a tougher floor. It’s a heavier-duty linoleum floor that’s fully glued down. It’s scratch and tear resistant, so I mean, very rarely are you gonna see dogs that are gonna be able to really get into that.  And the same thing goes for our furniture materials too. From our sofas to our dinette cushions, these are backed vinyl, so they’re just a little bit heavier duty, and they’re harder for pets to penetrate through with their claws.

Everything’s easily wiped down, from your tabletop surface to your cushions. Everything is very easily cleaned. We want to make sure everybody can make as big a mess as they need, because everybody gets dirty on a camping trip.

So, we also have a pretty unique thing up front in our master bedroom too. Our beds actually lift up and open up to reveal a full-bedroom set, but part of that bedroom set is a seat that you can sit down on. There’s a cushion that pulls out of there, so if you have a smaller dog, it’s great as a small dog bed, and when the bed goes down, it’s open space, so that dogs can sleep near their owners. You know, they have a little nook for them to get into.

Well, Max, so people are camping all seasons now. What features to do guys have on this unit that helps keep pets and people comfortable?

The first thing is, we include what’s called duel-ducted AC, which means that we’ve got a nice, powerful, 14.5K AC on top, and it’s ducted all throughout the coach. And that means you’ve got cold air in your bathrooms, and your bedrooms, and your living area. It’s just very, very good for air circulation. We’re using a really strong insulate material called Azdel, it’s formaldehyde free. It helps keep the trailer cool on those hot days too. If you have that AC running all day long, you don’t want it to be for nothing, right? So, to have a good insulant material to keep it very cool in here is very important. And you know, another thing, too, on the flipside of that is you start to get into those colder months, maybe camping into the fall and early winter, we have a heated enclosed underbelly, and a nice furnace inside of here, so you can really do an excellent job with temperature control. It just feels just like home. There’s a thermostat and everything, and it runs very, very well and efficiently, and I think it’ll be very comfortable for Zoey and all the pets that are coming inside.

And I know even when we were coming into the unit, there was, with the steps, I saw some changes there that I think would be helpful for older pets. Max: Yeah, and you know, we’re trying to include things that just make it easier, you know. That’s not a very fancy feature, it’s not really one that shines, but, really, it’s very important to have. You know, to have the wide, solid-stance steps is great for Zoey and for anybody– people and pets alike– to be able to come into the unit very comfortably, and make sure that they can get to everything without having to worry about bumping into stuff or falling down.

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Thanks for watching.