Last month we've been camping with some dog sledding friends, taking out our caravan, the Yorkie, for the first time since it got upgraded over the summer.
Last year, when we bought the Yorkie Wee Monster was very small, just three months old at his first race. He slept in a basinette beside our bed at the rear of the caravan. This year, he's bigger and more mobile. He doesn't fit in the basinette and no portacot was going to fit next to our bed.
Last year, the dogs slept in crates bolted to the bunk beds at the front of the caravan. This year, we knew we'd need those bunk beds back for the little guy, so, over the summer, we got the amazing John from Cruising Canines to install some custom berths. This involved gutting the front third of the caravan and rebuilding it. The result was
- four dog berths, with internal and external doors and vents,
- installing reinforcement to protect the dogs against roo strike,
- two new bunks on top of the berths,
- removing one window and using it to replace a broken one,
- two new storage spaces, and
- new carpeting and ply lining in all the new internal spaces.
We love it!
We were even able to find a portacot that had a side zip panel, perfect for a cot on a raised surface. The angle of the cot legs and the bunk's raised lip make it impossible to tip off the edge. I made new curtains for the Wee Monster's "bedroom" - sadly there was no Loch Ness Monster fabric, but there was a puppy print. We've also acquired a new awning and a "play pen" so Wee Monster has a place to hang out safely.
We've already taken the caravan out camping a couple of times, and it's pretty awesome!