Leaving your dog behind when going for a vacation may seem quite unfair to the extent of shortening your trip just to go back and check on its well-being. No wonder most people like including their pets when vacationing. Sometimes, traveling with your dog may not be the most desirable option but the only option. For instance, if you are going to be away for a long time, kenneling it would be out of the question. If you are not ready to place it in a temporary home or give it away, then you have to travel together.
If you are planning to travel with your dog, you have done the right thing. Your dog will love to tour the world and relax as well. To ensure you and your dog enjoy a fulfilling vacation experience. This article contains information to help you make the right decisions and the things you should put into consideration before you hit the road.
Tips for safe travels with your dog
Ready to travel with your dog? If you plan carefully, your dog can make the whole vacation experience memorable and more fun but you need to plan carefully. The best way to avoid disappointment is to plan everything way ahead of time. Here are amazing tips from veterans who have travelled with their dogs before to help you plan for your trip without unnecessary hiccups.
Visit the veterinarian
It goes without saying, you need to take your dog to the vet to a full check-up if you are planning to set out on any long trip. It’s important to ensure that your dog is physically fit to survive the journey. You will also need a health certificate to show that your dog is free from disease and documentation stating that your dog is up to date with all its shots. Even if you won’t be asked about them, having the necessary documents will give you peace of mind to concentrate on other plans.
Inquire about veterinarians of the place you plan to visit
The fact that your dog is in good condition when leaving home doesn’t mean you forget about taking precaution measures. Just like humans, even dogs can develop complications during the trip. Remember you will be staying in hotel rooms which are not necessarily pet friendly as your home. There are things that may not go well with your dog. Therefore, make sure you gather names of veterinarians of the places you intend to visit. You never know when your dog will need their services. Being prepared for any eventuality is the key to a happy holiday with your pet.
When traveling with your dog, you can’t pack haphazardly. Pets are just like toddlers. When packing, have all your dog’s items in one bag. Inside the bag ensure there are essentials such as a washable bed, a blanket, portable water and food bowl, food and wet wipes to clear any mess just in case. If you are going for a long trip, calming pills to help with anxiety can come in handy. Don’t forget to pack some treats and at least two of its favorite toys.
Confirm reservations before booking
Before you make your bookings whether it’s a hotel or an airline, ensure you inform them that you are traveling with your dog. Some airlines limit the number of pets they are carrying on each flight. Be sure to confirm that your flight has not exceeded the number before booking least you get disappointed at the airport. Some hotels don’t allow dogs in the hotel rooms, some have size and breed restrictions and others are just not pet friendly. Before reserving for accommodation, be sure the hotel is aware you are coming with your dog. Enquire about any restrictions and extra charges. Some hotels may charge a cleaning fee. If you don’t like surprises during your trips, raise all your concerns and questions to the hotel personnel. Only make your reservations when satisfied.
Keep your dog away from trouble
When travelling with your dog, it’s a good idea to keep it safe. A crate or a portable kennel is an excellent way to keep your dog safe whether in the car of flight. However, since your dog is not used to a crate at home, help it get accustomed to it before the travel day. Train your dog to get comfortable in his crate before the journey to reduce the anxiety that may come with the whole experience. Make the crate as comfortable as possible. You can even put some treats in there and allow it to have access to the crate any time. All these should be done at least a week before the trip. The longer the better for both of you.
When buying a crate for your dog, ensure it is large enough to allow your dog to lie down, stand and turn without discomfort. Leak-proof bottom covered with an absorbent material will ensure your dog is comfortable and you are not going to deal with any mess in case of anything. Stock the crate with your dog’s favorite toy and a comfortable mat. Lastly, remember to label the crate with your name, phone number and address. The information can be very helpful in case you get separated from your dog.
Pack food and water
When traveling with your dog, don’t make a mistake of packing less food because you are sure you will purchase more at your destination. A good idea would be to pack enough or even extra. It would be better to come back with unfinished food than dealing with lack of dog food away from home. If your dog has an easily upset stomach, check with your veterinarian on what to do in case they happen. If the idea of packing its large bowl doesn’t go well with you, consider buying collapsible ones. Just ensure your dog gets used to them at least a week before your trip.
Make the whole experience fun
Now that you are traveling with your dog, don’t make it look like an overwhelming affair. Don’t forget you are going on a vacation to relax and re-energize. Again, if you are nervous, your dog can pick on your stress. Thus, if you want to deal with a calm pet then you have to be calm as well.