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Old 06-09-2015, 08:58 PM   #1
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RVing with a toddler.

We have a 2.5 year old and we're searching for tips on RVing with little ones - particularly when it comes to safety.

Our little one is active and adventurous (putting it nicely ). We're thinking it will take her 3 seconds to figure out how to unlock the front door at night and wander off.

Please share your tips on keeping your toddler alive while camping (not just the door thing)!
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Old 06-09-2015, 09:13 PM   #2
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I can't offer too much assistance, as I can't really remember changing much of anything on any of our rigs. They will figure out almost every safety device you can install. My older 2 sound like yours, adventurous, and very smart. The older ones started camping at 7 days old each, and the newest one was 2 weeks. I've had them fall down stairs, fall out of bunks on previous rigs etc. They have survived. Funny you mention the door. My oldest one tried to get out the front door just last trip. It was locked, she was pretty much asleep, it woke me up so she didn't succeed. She didn't remember anything the next morning. Only advice I can offer, is never ever take your eyes off them, if that's possible. We try to keep ours occupied as much as possible to keep them out of trouble. On our last trip, another thing that happened, my wife and I were outside for just a bit doing something while the older 2 were inside. We never heard anything out of the ordinary. Later, we found videos on my wife's iPhone where my daughter was filming my son dancing and jumping off the ladder. More funny than dangerous, but it doesn't take them long to get into something. My daughter pretty much trained herself on the iPhone, and figured out pass codes based off of different important numbers she's memorized. Kids are just smart these days.

One thing I can remember doing, is adding a smoke alarm that you could record your message on. We have, and still do hold fire drills where each kid knows what to do in different scenarios. The smoke alarm has my voice on it instructing them on what to do.
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Old 06-09-2015, 09:16 PM   #3
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My mind is coming back a little. Door knob covers for the bathroom. They figured out how to remove those. Electric recepticle plug inserts, they figured out how to remove those. Stove knob covers, they figured out how to remove those. You get the idea. We've tried all sorts of stuff.
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Old 06-09-2015, 09:23 PM   #4
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We have a soon to be 3 year old grandson and a pak-n-play has come in handy many times. Really, he isn't too much trouble to take camping. Just have to keep a constant eye on them, especially around the campfire.
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Old 06-09-2015, 09:23 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by BigJohnD View Post
I can't offer too much assistance, as I can't really remember changing much of anything on any of our rigs. They will figure out almost every safety device you can install. My older 2 sound like yours, adventurous, and very smart. The older ones started camping at 7 days old each, and the newest one was 2 weeks. I've had them fall down stairs, fall out of bunks on previous rigs etc. They have survived. Funny you mention the door. My oldest one tried to get out the front door just last trip. It was locked, she was pretty much asleep, it woke me up so she didn't succeed. She didn't remember anything the next morning. Only advice I can offer, is never ever take your eyes off them, if that's possible. We try to keep ours occupied as much as possible to keep them out of trouble. On our last trip, another thing that happened, my wife and I were outside for just a bit doing something while the older 2 were inside. We never heard anything out of the ordinary. Later, we found videos on my wife's iPhone where my daughter was filming my son dancing and jumping off the ladder. More funny than dangerous, but it doesn't take them long to get into something. My daughter pretty much trained herself on the iPhone, and figured out pass codes based off of different important numbers she's memorized. Kids are just smart these days.

One thing I can remember doing, is adding a smoke alarm that you could record your message on. We have, and still do hold fire drills where each kid knows what to do in different scenarios. The smoke alarm has my voice on it instructing them on what to do.
Ha! I'm totally prepared for falls, bumps, and bruises. I'm firmly in the "rub some dirt on it" camp.

I'm just concerned about the wandering off mainly. I almost said something about the oven/stove in the original post...that's the other thing. When it's in use, she'll never be allowed inside alone. But considering she has an early bedtime I am slightly nervous about her exploring inside alone while we're around the campfire.

We'll just have to feel things out and be consistent and clear on the rules for what she can and can't touch.

Glad to hear from someone who hasn't had any major issues with THREE little ones!
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Old 06-09-2015, 09:25 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by glsimms View Post
We have a soon to be 3 year old grandson and a pak-n-play has come in handy many times. Really, he isn't too much trouble to take camping. Just have to keep a constant eye on them, especially around the campfire.
Oh man I miss the pack-n-play. Ours is a climber so we've been crib-free since before she was 2.

My mom eyes (on the back of my head) will be getting a workout for sure.
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Old 06-09-2015, 09:26 PM   #7
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My mind is coming back a little. Door knob covers for the bathroom. They figured out how to remove those. Electric recepticle plug inserts, they figured out how to remove those. Stove knob covers, they figured out how to remove those. You get the idea. We've tried all sorts of stuff.
Story of my life, John. Story of my life.
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Old 06-09-2015, 09:37 PM   #8
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The first thing I did was purchase a baby/pet fence for the screen door so they wouldn't fall right through the screen. I then added the childproof hook & eye type latch to the screen door as well. Never had a child fall out the door despite their many attempts.

Another thing to consider is the risk of scalding/ serious burns from the coach hot water supply. When we bath the little ones in the trailer we fully deplete the hot water supply and then I turn off the hot water until they are out of the tub. The kids like to spend a long time playing in the tub and I was always a bit concerned that a tap might get turned on accidently. If she is able to get up to the sink herself then you will need to be watchful there as well. I do believe these hot water tanks heat to around 150F which can scald a child instantly.

When our oldest was learning to walk we always fenced off the fire pit. Never had that trouble with the younger one though, much more cautious personality.

Otherwise its not really any different than being at home. Just use good sense and keep dangerous things out of reach.
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Old 06-09-2015, 09:38 PM   #9
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I take a different approach with my 4 year old and 20 month old. I teach them about the RV. They love to learn and love to help. My 4 year old was 2.5 when we got the RV. He loved to "help" crank down stabilizers or hold a hose. Now today both kids love to wash the RV and do other items. I am not a fan of shrouding them from danger with safety devices. But rather teach them what the dangers are and how they should behave. It takes effort and some continuous monitoring. But now my 4 year old rarely gets into trouble and helps out quite a bit. I hope the younger one is following the same path.
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Old 06-09-2015, 09:53 PM   #10
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I would probably fall more to the side of Bucko on this. We have taught our 4 pretty much everything we can about the various campers, campground etiquette, and use the word "no" a lot, especially when they were younger. As for the wandering, it will happen some no matter how close you watch. Little suckers can be fast! Best thing is to know your environment as best you can. It is natural to worry, but there are some ways to minimize it. If they are new to camping, do some camping in the driveway until they are comfortable with it, then venture out. The absolute best thing (at least for us) was making sure they were warm and comfortable and had fun. We now full time with with four aged 7-13 without too many issues. Be ready to see things from a whole new perspective!
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