We all love to travel with our best friends, but it is important to do it safely. Here are some tips to make that adventure safe and fun for both of you.
- Get your Dog used to the vehicle. Start with short trips in the neighborhood and around the block. Then take longer trips in the country. If there is anything that makes your pet nervous, you will have time to help them get comfortable before your trip together. If they get carsick, you can experiment with different medications or homeopathic remedies.
- Keep your pets safe and secure in a well-ventilated crate or carrier. If a crate is not an option, try a harness, hammock, or bucket seat for the small dogs. You want something that will contain your pet in case of an accident. The crate should be large enough for your pet to stand, sit, lie down and turn around in. Secure your pet’s crate so it will not slide or shift in the event of an abrupt stop. Short trips will allow your pet to get used to their travel arrangements.
- ***If you decide to forgo the crate, don’t allow your pet to ride with his head outside the window. Debris can get into their eyes, nose or mouth and cause injury or illness.
- Prepare a pet-friendly travel kit. Bring food or treats, a bowl, leash, plastic bags and medical documents. Pack a favorite toy or pillow to give your pet a sense of familiarity. Be sure to pack plenty of water and avoid feeding your pet in a moving vehicle.
- Never leave your animal alone in a parked vehicle. On a hot day, even with the windows open, a parked automobile can become a furnace in no time, and heatstroke can develop. In cold weather, a car can act as a refrigerator, holding in the cold and causing the animal to freeze to death.
- Make sure you have information for veterinary locations for your travel destination in case of emergencies.
- Remember, no matter where you’re headed or how you plan to get there, make sure your pet is microchipped for identification and wears a collar and tag imprinted with your name, phone number and any relevant contact information. It’s a good idea for your pet’s collar to also include a temporary travel tag with your cell phone and destination phone number for the duration of your trip.
- If you are traveling to another home with pets, make sure to have them greet outside first. Take a walk together to make sure all pets will get along or be prepared to separate them if needed. Vacations can end quickly if visiting pets don’t get along with resident pets and there was not a plan in place ahead of time.
Share your dog adventures with us. Where did you go, what did you do? Any advice for new travelers. We would love to hear your stories.