best dog hauling vehicle
My wife and I are in the market for a new vehicle. I am having a dificult time deciding what vehicle to get. My needs in the vehicle are as follows.
Need to be able to fit 2 adult labs in kennels in cargo and still have enough storage room for gear to last a week on a hunting trip.
Be able to keep those labs cool in the summer and warm in the winter.
Have enough seating for 5 people
4WD or AWD
Be able to tow 3,000 lbs with a inside full of people and dogs.
Ive never been crazy about SUV's but that is looking like what I need. I had the idea of buying a full size truck, putting a camper shell on it and trying to run heat and a/c back to the dogs. My main worry is keeping the dogs cool. I am leaving Alaska for the Lower 48 in Dec (not by choice!!!) and need to be able to keep the dogs comfortable.
I need to be able to tow a boat and dogs at the same time so I cant go with a dog trailer.
What works good for all of you?
Fullsize pickup, extended cab or quad cab.
A portable dog box that will sit in the back of the truck. Get the insulated version. You can mount cooling fans to the top.
A white campershell stays cooler. Purchase a model that gives you the most side window ventilation. You can also mount a cooling fan to the top as well. Regular kennels with insulated jackets for winter.
A trick I learned from an old desert driver was to leave the window of the shell at the back of the cab open, but keep the other shell windows closed.
What this does is create positive pressure inside the shell keeping out the road dust. There are enough holes to loose air through around the edges of the shell that you will get air flow as well keeping things cool.
I tried this some years ago on the Denali and it kept the dust out of the shell as well as the bugs. However, I don't know how well it will work at temps over 90.
Go with the extended or Quad cab pickup. If you are going to get a shell up here to go Custom Truck on the Seward frontage road. They sell their own PVC shells. Get the side windows that flip up to open. That way you can get to your stuff behind the crates from each side.
I got a good quote on a RAM 1500 quad cab. I am for sure going to check out Custom Truck. Thanks for your advice.