Lonely Planet Writer

"Our dog is really happy discovering new places and smells," on the road with a couple's best friend

Animal-loving couple Céline Lemarchand and Aurélien Thiebaut from Paris, France, wanted to travel the world but couldn’t bear to leave their precious pet behind. So, the solution was simple; bring their two-year-old Akita Inu, Yuuka with them on their world travels.  

Two-year-old Akita Inu, Yuuka. Image by @dogntravel / mediadrumworld.com

“We think having a dog is a responsibility, leaving for several months without Yuuka was unthinkable. First of all, because we would miss her too much as she is like a member of the family, and we could not impose our dog for nine months on our family or friends,” explains Aurélien.

Céline Lemarchand and Aurélien Thiebaut with their dog. Image by @dogntravel / mediadrumworld.com

The couple originally planned to visit the Oceanic continent including Australia and New Zealand but were put off by the weather and complicated paperwork for Yuuka. South America took their attention instead and they explained how Yuuka is much happier travelling than she was living in Paris. “When we lived in Paris, she was in a 45-square-metre flat and her daily walks were on sidewalks or in parks on weekends,” said Céline. “So even if it’s a dog that does not ask for a lot of exercises, she can only be happier with her new adventurous life.”

Yuuku loves travelling. Image by @dogntravel / mediadrumworld.com

So far they have visited Uruguay, Argentina, Bolivia, Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, Panama and Costa Rica.  They continued their journey to Nicaragua, Honduras, El Salvador, Guatemala, Belize, Mexico, the United States and finally Canada.

Incredible images show the couple and Yuuka all across North and South America. Image by @dogntravel / mediadrumworld.com

“Our initial project was to do only South America for six months, but we arrived in Colombia we chose to cross the Cape Derien and continue to Central America and North America,” said Aurélien.

The couple wouldn’t consider leaving their pup behind. Image by @dogntravel / mediadrumworld.com

“Thanks to this trip, we can show people who thought we were crazy that it is possible to travel with a dog in America. We think, she is really happy to discover new landscapes, new smells and more than anything to discover new animals. She is passionate about iguanas and monkeys.”

So far they have made it through the Americas. Image by @dogntravel / mediadrumworld.com

People called the couple crazy for wanting to bring their dog on such an adventure but Aurélien hopes they can show it is possible. “We really hope our adventure inspires others,” he said.  “We think that people may need to think a little more about bringing their pets with them because it is with us that our dogs are the happiest.

Yuuku loves all the new signts, sounds and smells. Image by @dogntravel / mediadrumworld.com

“But for some countries, it’s impossible to get them so fortunately there are kennels. The most important thing is to find a solution and not abandon them to go on vacation.”