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Where can we try out caravanning?


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Hi everyone, we looking at possibly buying a caravan but not sure if it's right for us. We love the idea of going away around the UK at  short notice and being self-sufficient. However we have three dogs and we are  worried about containing them and annoying other campers on sites. Does anyone know if there are sites where we could try out a Parked touring caravan for a few days - sort of try before we buy?  

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I would suggest as part of your investigation and before spending anything, you need an overview  to check a sample of sites to see how many will allow 3 dogs on one pitch?

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I wish you luck in trying to find a caravan to rent. The history of the few people on this forum who have rented a caravan out (even to family) is the damage and mess left by people can be terrible.

Some sites restrict dog to two so you could, first, ring round some sites at random to see if they would allow three dogs on one pitch.

 

Personally I keep away (if possible) from pitches with more than one dog. It is a very emotive issue amongst caravanners with about equal numbers of those that love dogs and those that prefer sites with no dogs.

Graham

Unless otherwise stated all posts are my personal opinion 

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9 minutes ago, WispMan said:

I wish you luck in trying to find a caravan to rent. The history of the few people on this forum who have rented a caravan out (even to family) is the damage and mess left by people can be terrible.

Some sites restrict dog to two so you could, first, ring round some sites at random to see if they would allow three dogs on one pitch.

 

Personally I keep away (if possible) from pitches with more than one dog. It is a very emotive issue amongst caravanners with about equal numbers of those that love dogs and those that prefer sites with no dogs.

 

10 minutes ago, WispMan said:

I wish you luck in trying to find a caravan to rent. The history of the few people on this forum who have rented a caravan out (even to family) is the damage and mess left by people can be terrible.

Some sites restrict dog to two so you could, first, ring round some sites at random to see if they would allow three dogs on one pitch.

 

Personally I keep away (if possible) from pitches with more than one dog. It is a very emotive issue amongst caravanners with about equal numbers of those that love dogs and those that prefer sites with no dogs.

Thanks for the comments - i was worried that the dogs could be a problem for other site visitors.  Im surprised  about the damage caused by friends and family renting a caravan, im a landlord and know exactly what can happen with bad tenants. We are a mature couple and would be happy to pay a security deposit 

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I agree with Wispman on this very sensitive subject.

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I admire Wispman's dog tolerance ...

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Are we saying that we don't have '3 dog-members' here?  I find that surprising - could be true though but I have seen a clutch of small things from time to time on CLs

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Compared to a house or static caravan tourers are pretty fragile and the earlier comment about mess and damage does not surprise me at all.

Damage can occur just because a "borrower" does not understand how some bits work.

 

You could try renting a small static by way of a  trial.

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We have a static caravan and owners are only allowed two dogs per caravan.

Im really not sure how we’d go on with our very lively cockapoo on a touring pitch if we were still touring, he’d need to be restrained with the big screw in tether we have, at all times, which I doubt he or us would like.

 

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4 hours ago, SamD said:

Are we saying that we don't have '3 dog-members' here?  I find that surprising - could be true though but I have seen a clutch of small things from time to time on CLs

 

I hope not ! I have 4 and have never had any problems with any site I have been to, including club sites !!

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It may be tricky to rent a caravan and occupy it with 3 dogs, so that seems to be a non-starter. I think some advice from people with dogs is the most useful to the OP, rather than those of us who don't. We don't mind dogs provided  there is no nuisance, so I have no "axe to grind" either way.

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48 minutes ago, Brecon said:

 

I hope not ! I have 4 and have never had any problems with any site I have been to, including club sites !!

 

Thanks - pleasing.

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You’ll be OK with dogs on most sites. About every site I’ve been on, half the campers have had one and several had two or more.  On one site, next door had 5,  perfectly behaved - though the owner was an agility dog trainer.  You’d have to check with each site as to how many are allowed. 
 

That’s the key:  if your dogs are under control and cause no nuisance, no-one will raise an eyebrow.  Site rules generally mean you can’t leave your dog off-lead. We tether our very bouncy cockapoo, and she’s happy to have the grass beneath her and watch the world go by. Others set up several windbreaks to enclose them. 
 

The tricky bit is finding a tourer you could hire.  

 

Another option would be to rent a static on site that also has tourers. Walk round the touring site, chat to the owners, and let your dogs meet theirs.  See how it works. Explain what you’re trying to find out, and you might even be invited to have a look round the caravan.  


You’d be welcome in ours! Good luck. 
 

PS. Mrs B just asked what I’m posting.  So she said (like she does) it’s much easier to hire a motorhome. You see them on every site. 

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Hi Andy,

You could have a look at the website Camplify - you can hire caravans off people, whether they take dogs is another question, some say 'pet friendly' so you may be able to take maybe 1 0r 2 of your furry friends to try it out. Some look like the owners will deliver to a site for you. Maybe worth a look?

 

We've got a dog and try our best to make sure she behaves on site, she has her crate for quiet time and is quite happy in there and will doze happily in it. Summer months are the easiest as you can got out for good long walks to wear them out, winter is harder when it's dark in the afternoon as she gets fed up with being in a small space, but as she gets older she's getting better.

 

I think the best type of site for you would be smaller CS and CL sites from both clubs as less units on site and more space to 'spread out' from your neighbours.

 

Good Luck.

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are you wanting to tow the caravan or have it delivered to a site ?  I take it you have the correct licence and some knowledge of the rules of the road if you are towing.   I have always had 3 dogs until the last one died in 2013.  The main  caravan clubs are okay with the number of dogs, but with some sites they allow e.g. 2 free and pay for the third one, you will find that different sites have different rules. We used to rent cottages  etc. before we had our own van and we always took throws with us to cover all the furnishings. The dogs shouldn't be a problem if they are under control.....

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We had two dogs with no trouble and some of the sites have great dog walks or separate field for exercise. 

Some smaller dealers let you try before you buy but not sure how that will in this day and age. 

 

On site we have a Kampa full length skirt and a number of free standing windbreaks to act as a corral meaning the dogs don't have to be tied up all the time and come and go into the van, awning or 'garden' as they please. 

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On 09/07/2021 at 13:05, WispMan said:

I wish you luck in trying to find a caravan to rent.

A number of companies hire tourers - some self-tow, some towed to site and some offering both…

 

Tilshead Caravans - (pets allowed) have been hiring tourers for aeons.  
 

Hire-Me - not sure about pets  but they will provide an hour’s towing tuition (£69).  There are others - simply Google 'touring caravans for hire'.  
 

My wife and I started out by hiring a motorhome to see if we liked the idea - decided immediately that we did but felt a caravan would suit our needs better than a motorhome

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  • Gordon changed the title to Where can we try out caravanning?

Personally Ive seen more problems on sites involving unruly ferrel children than dogs. Give a dog with a responsible owner any day than  children on the next pitch or even worst families in tents 

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Agree with Reggieperrin and Marcus, towing is also part of the experience. Give me dogs over children any day….. 

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I know it's not quite the same but there are many more motorhome rentals than touring caravans, you could try this for a weekend to give you a feel?

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You would definitely  be accepted on a club site with three dogs.  But I can't  imagine that most caravan or motorhome rental firms would be too keen.  You will just have to ask around.

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Leave the dogs with friends or family while you rent a caravan - it will probably be a static but will let you see whether camping would suit you.

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In April we were on a site near Buxton as almost the only non canine-owning unit! One neighbour had 8 (yes, eight) spaniels, a regular performing team, and so immaculately behaved, they were barely noticeable. She had very strong views, as a professional trainer, on the  clear lack of training of some other dogs on site!
Trying before buying, if you can find something suitable, seems an excellent idea. May you have success in finding it, and a much needed break.

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At least you are considerate to other people on site with your dogs, massive bug bear of mine is people who own dogs (we own one too) and he occasionally barks, but who seem it acceptable to let there dog bark continuously throughout the day etc. Came away for a quiet relaxed time and we get to listen to dogs having a bark off. 

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