So travelling the Big Lap with Django our dog (stopping at Birdsville for the Big Red Bash).

Who would have thought that we would travel with a dog?

Last year Nathan (Natti) decided it would be a good idea to take a dog with us on our Big Lap. We have not had a dog for a very long time and were not known as "dog people." However when Natti gets an idea in his head it becomes an obsession with him.

So began the research into what type of dog we should have. Eventually we came across a breeder who had "bluey" and he was just 8 weeks old.

Hammer and tongs we went for it. Did we know exactly what lay ahead!!!

Well our dog came home to us...a beautiful little pup...and we grew to love him very quickly. ...

The name Django was found during some research on finding a name and it seemed to suit him the most. Natti took to training him and our lives became very busy. It was like having a new born baby.

We decided to take a short break away with Django to see how he would travel. He loved being in the car...he slept most of the way. This was a huge relief to know that he would be okay in the car, especially travelling so far.

We had to delay our travels by two weeks as Django became very ill with viral meningitis and was hospitalised for four days. He recovered well and was put on medication. We were ready to go but then he had a relapse. We were only prepared to leave once the vet gave the ok.

After a consultation we knew that it was okay to travel provided we gave Django his medication to keep him from getting ill again.

We bought a car harness, treats and bones and were ready for our Big Lap with Django.

We had to be able to stop every two hours to let him out for a run and a "pish"...which was not too difficult as both Natti and I are in that age bracket where we need to stop and "pish" too.

Being in the car with Django is interesting. He likes to sleep but also likes to stick his head out of the window. So he has developed a routine. We get in the car, he looks around and when he wants the window open he stands and waits but also paws me to let me know he is ready.

Once the window is open he sticks his head out for a few minutes, and then flops back down to sleep. He can do this four or five times during a 200 km stretch. He also wants to play with his balls in the car. He throws them towards me in the front seat and I throw them back to him. This means I need to interact with him so that he doe not distract Natti whilst driving.

He also nudges me with his nose when he wants to drink. Of course we have water and a bowl for that too.

One thing we had to try and overcome was his short sharp bark, especially when we were talking to one another. We overcame this obstacle by using a spray bottle with water. Every time he barked we would spray him and he seemed to understand the consequences of his irrelevant barking.

Another thing we were very aware of was his need to poo at least 3 times a day. At night he would sometimes "purr" to let us know he wanted to go out. This did not often happen but it is great that he lets us know his needs. Need I say he is such a clever dog!!!! The early morning poo run is usually done by Natti...phew!!!!

He is a really good sleeper at night and loves his bed and does not worry that we have to climb over him sometimes so that we can go to the toilet in the middle of the night.

Another thing we try to look out for are ovals where we can unleash him to run after his ball as much as he wants. He desperately needs this exercise so we make every effort to accommodate this.

We are kept very busy with walks, people wanting to pat him, his desire to play with other dogs...not always welcome by other dog owners...especially with very small dogs, as they seem to see Djangos enthusiasm as "threatening."

He loves to "bow" and "paw" typical of a young pup who wants to play...but not always seen this way by others.

We have learnt a new love. He is so loyal, maybe even a bit "sookie" that he can get quite anxious if one of us walks away without him. He is such a pleasure to be with that the exhaustion we feel at the end of the day is good for our minds, body and soul.

However travelling with a dog might not be for everyone.

We would not have it any other way. How much we have changed!!!!

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