Annie (with Clancy & Connor)

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Annie's house on wheels

Annie, 59, lives on the road with whippets, Clancy and Connor.  She has been travelling for many years now and says that, while travelling with dogs can be challenging, it is most definitely worth it. And the ‘boys’? They love it, too!

What do you travel in?
2002 Sunliner Mirage mo­torhome, ‘Pawsaroundoz’. It’s small enough to fit most car park spaces. I am about to add a second solar panel and am sewing up some new curtains.

How long on the road?
I have been on one long trip since 2004 but, as I have to work, I sometimes stay in one place for a fair while.

Where do you camp?

Clancy and Connor love life on the road

Clancy and Connor love life on the road

I usually camp in freedom camps or the bush if I can. I dislike being crammed into tight spots. However, caravan parks still have their place … just nowhere near all the time.

Do you book ahead?
Very casual! If one plans eve­rything one misses all sorts of local ‘do’s’, a really good ‘relax’ or even ‘yarning’ with the bloke who just pulled in, and has a wealth of stories to tell.

Best thing about the lifestyle?
The chance to be me. The fact that I have views or walks outside and not just dingy old flats and city streets or what­ever. No landlord! Most of all though … the people you meet on the road!

Any dislikes?
As a single traveller there are times when I do wish I had someone to share the amazing sunset, a walk, a music festival or even just a meal out with, you know the sort of thing.

How is travelling with dogs?
I would not be without them! If there is a place I want to go to that is not dog friendly there is usually a way around it. I have swapped dog sits with others near national parks, and used day care that most vets will do for you for a reasonable fee. When the weather is cool enough, the ‘boys’ get a long run and are happy enough to stay quietly in the ‘House on Wheels’ for a few hours, with water and a little snack.

On the-road hobbies?
Walking, photography, writing (the dogs have their own blog that I edit!), a quality control service to coffee shops, baker­ies, and other eateries! Op shop and junk shop fossicking, and the 3 ‘f’s’ fairs, fetes and festivals. As soon as I have completed my studies and have my Certificates I should like to do paid/unpaid work 50%/50% as I travel.

Favourite camp in Australia?
Roughly half of Tasmania; the Eyre Peninsula has some lovely campsites and seafood; the precious Kimberley; and even the most boring roadside rest area can be transformed if some interesting travellers pull in and share the evening with all assembled!

Scariest nomad experience?
I have had to move camp late in the afternoon only once – I am very aware of my own personal safety.

Tips for ‘dog travellers’?
Your dog needs a really good ‘recall’, and should be quiet when you leave him/her in your camp. Remember there are people who are scared of dogs so respect this; there are also dogs who are scared of other dogs so respect this too. Any dog should be on a lead around other vehicles and camps. Keep to your dog’s ‘at-home’ routine as much as possible – it makes them feel at ease.

Advice for wannabe nomads?
Leave your city/suburban mindset at home. You are out on the road to experience a different life, so do it!


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