Summer is here, which means traveling to reach your vacation destination for many pet lovers; that also means taking your beloved pet along for the ride.
Traveling with your dog can be a rewarding experience, but it can be stressful as well, not only on you but on your beloved canine also. The key to having a safe, uneventful trip with your dog is to keep him comfortable, fed, and happy.
Remember, humans aren’t the only ones who get scared by the unknown; dogs do, too, so following the tips below on how to travel with your dog will help you and your canine pal get to your vacation destination unscathed.
1. Visit Your Vet
Whether you’re traveling internationally with your pet and wondering how to fly with your dog or staying local and wondering how to take your dog on a car ride, you need to visit the vet first and foremost. Your vet will help you to ensure your pet is ready for traveling.
Your vet will give your dog a physical, update their vaccines, do any blood tests that need to be done, and place a microchip if you wish him to. A microchip is a good idea when traveling because you never know when your pet will slip his leash and get lost in an unknown city. A microchip will allow you to track your pet and bring him home safely.
It’s also important to schedule your appointment with your pet’s vet ahead of time, so everything can be done to ensure your pet is healthy and ready to make the trip.
2. Plan Your Route
When it comes to learning how to travel with your dog in a car, it’s important to plan your route out ahead of time. Traveling with your dog, whether it’s to the airport or in a car, for the entire trip can become aggravating if you’re not prepared.
It’s best to make frequent stops, as your dog will have to go to the bathroom. Plan out your route to where you can stop at rest areas and parks that allowed pets. It’s also a good idea to plan out where you’re going to eat because you can’t and wouldn’t leave your dog in the car unattended.
One thing you don’t want to forget when traveling by car is a safety restraint for your dog. You can crate your pup for the ride, but you can also purchase a doggie seatbelt that fastens your pet into the seat and keeps you and your pet safe.
In some areas of the world, it’s illegal to have your pet in the car without some type of restraint. Securing your pup when traveling is the best way to protect your family, your pet, and others traveling on the roads, highways, and byways from being injured in an accident.
Many accidents have been caused by a dog distracting the driver and them taking their eyes off the road, if only for a second.
3. Pack Plenty of Food and Water
You need to pack plenty of food and water for your pet to make sure they are well fed and don’t get dehydrated on the trip. Check with your vet to see if it’s okay to give your pooch bottled water during the trip, as some areas don’t have water that is fit to drink for humans or pets.
It’s also a good idea to pack about a week’s worth of your pet’s regular dog food, even if you can purchase the food at your destination. You never know when a particular store might be out of or not carry the brand you’re searching for.
The last thing you want is to switch up your dog’s diet during vacation. Switching up his diet could end with an allergic reaction or, at the least, an upset stomach because your dog isn’t used to that type of dog food.
4. Book Hotel Accommodations Ahead of Time
If you’ve ever traveled with a dog, then you already know that not all hotels, bed and breakfasts, or rental properties allow pets. While you’re planning your route, try to book your hotel accommodations ahead of time. Many places do allow pets; you have to search to find them.
Make sure to add a pet deposit into your travel budget, as many places that accept pets want you to put down a deposit just in case your dog destroys their property. A few places will give the deposit back at the end of your stay if everything is as it should be, but that’s up to the hotel, bed and breakfast, or rental property you’re considering.
Bring plenty of chew toys, bones, and games along for the ride and for your stay in the hotels along the way. Dog’s are less likely to chew on things or get bored and become destructive if they have something to do. Dogs get bored, just like people do, so be prepared by bringing games and toys for your pet with you on your trip.
5. Never Leave Your Dog Unattended In a Car
It’s important to never, ever leave your dog unattended in the car, even if it’s just to run into the store for a second. It’s illegal in most states, and it’s also dangerous for your pet. Many animals have suffocated when they were left in a car with the windows rolled up for too long on a humid day.
Instead of being sorry later on, just don’t leave your pet in the car unattended at all during your travels.
Enjoy Traveling With Your Dog
These are just a few of the tips that can help you have a safe, fun trip with your dog. Traveling with your dog can be a great experience for you and your family if you do it the right way. For any questions concerning your family pet, contact us for the answers.