Bird Dogs & Training  |  04/20/2023

From Home to the Open Road


Your bird dog can lounge and travel in style with these products from Orvis

By Andy Fondrick

As is the case every year during our Bird Dogs for Habitat campaign, this month has gone to the dogs. While there is a lot of focus on field gear and training tips, our friends at Orvis have some products that have shifted our attention to also keeping our four-legged companions comfortable during the times between adventures in the uplands.

Orvis Memory Foam Bolster Bed

This was an instant fan favorite in a house with two dogs and far too many dog beds. I took the Orvis Memory Foam Bolster Bed out of the box and immediately noticed it’s high-quality feel. It’s one of the heavier dog beds I’ve owned, which speaks to its durability and strong construction. The memory foam is thick, but forgiving, and the quilted fabric not only feels soft, but looks great in the living room next to a fireplace or entertainment center.

More importantly, the dogs love it. Our 70-pound black lab has decided it’s his new favorite spot in the house. We have the medium size bed because we needed it to fit into a more compact space, and he has no problem curling up and utilizing the backrest as a pillow as he dreams about chasing birds afield. A large would probably have been the right size from him to fully stretch out, but he’s never been one to use a dog bed in a conventional matter anyway.

Lounging in luxury with the Orvis Memory Foam Bolster Bed.

It’s a low-profile bed with an easy opening which is great for the older dogs that come to visit in our family to get in and out of. Plus, the cover is water resistant, so it’s easy to keep clean. When it does get dirty, it can be quickly removed and thrown in the washing machine for easy cleaning.

This bed is more like a luxury dog sofa and it has quickly pushed all of those other beds that used to clutter our living room into the office or out into the garage.

Grip-Tight Windowed Hammock Seat Protector

Whether it’s during the hunting season or running around during the wet muddy spring, traveling with dogs and keeping the truck clean can be a challenge. While our bird dogs ride in kennels for the most part, the family rescue dog is always in the back seat. There are enough hot days where we don’t want either dog in the truck bed, so many times the bench seat is inhabited by both dogs at the same time.

The Grip-Tight Windowed Hammock Seat Protector is a must have for your truck cab or back seat of the SUV to keep dirty paws and wet dogs from ruining your seats or upholstery. The hammock style helps to catch hair, dust, dirt and moisture keeping it off your back seat and carpet floors. Installation is super easy (as long as you have adjustable head rest), so removing the hammock for passengers or reinstalling if your bird dog finds some unexpected muck before their next car ride is a breeze.

The mesh panel in the middle of the hammock allows your furry friends to see out the front as they normally would, and allows you to keep an eye on them without impeding your view. While it won’t keep energetic dogs from hoping from the back to the front, it does a great job of containing well-versed travelers in their designated area.

The quilted finish is comfortable to sit in if you decide to drop the front two attachments and just cover the back seat for kids or other passengers while the seat is still covered. Simply thread the seat belt connector through the designated slots and off you go.

We chose the ‘truck-large’ size so we could use it in both our Ford F150 and our midsize SUV without it being too large, but if you want maximum coverage in your full-size truck I would recommend the ‘truck-XL’ size. The slate color is great for our black lab, but if your dog has a lighter colored coat, the gray or khaki color would do a better job at concealing shedded hair.

Riding with the Grip-Tight Windowed Hammock Seat Protector. Photo provided by Orvis, taken by Caitlin Fikac.

Tough Trail Chuckwagon Dog Tote

I’ve used a variety of bags, totes and containers to pack and travel with our dogs over the years, so I was a bit skeptical on this one. After a weekend on the road, I was a believer that the Tough Trail Chuckwagon Dog Tote is the perfect solution for packing for a long weekend adventure with your dog.

The bag design is really slick featuring a light-weight water-resistant material with quality stitching for a very durable feel. The interior pockets are adjustable so you can add or remove dividers depending on your needs. Plus, there are lined pockets for wet training bumpers or toys to keep everything else in the bag dry.

Included with the bag are two collapsible silicone bowls that pack down nicely into a side pocket and a roll-top lined food bag that holds enough food for a large dog to go on a 3- or 4-day adventure (specs say it holds approximately 14 cups). For a long weekend, I had no problem packing 3.5 days worth of food for the lab who eats 4 cups a day into the provided food bag. If that isn’t enough space, or you want to limit your packing on longer trips, there plenty of space to add another food bag if necessary, you can buy additional food bags or totes from Orvis.

This tote makes packing and organizing your pet’s belongings and food or medications super easy and outperforms other bags and containers we’ve tried in the past.

Andy Fondrick is the digital marketing coordinator for Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever. When he's not at his desk, he’s likely chasing waterfowl and upland birds behind his Black Lab Kona or enjoying whatever sport is currently in season.


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