Keep Fido or Felix safe and happy with these tips for travelling with your pet
We all love our pets, but sometimes travelling with your pet can be a big hassle. Here are some tips to help make the process easier and more enjoyable for everyone.
Visit the Vet First
If you’re planning an extended vacation, or if your pet has any existing medical issues, it is a very good idea to visit the vet for a checkup before travelling with your pet. Depending on where you are going and how you are travelling, you may also need to request vaccination records and/or a health certification for your pet. Be sure to stock up on any medications your pet may need during the trip while at the vet’s office.
Check Destination Rules & Regulations
If you plan on travelling internationally with your pet, you’ll need to read up on the rules and regulations about bringing your pet into various countries. Some countries allow pets from US to enter right away as long as you have proof of current vaccinations, while other countries may want to place your pet in quarantine. Also, be sure that you bring the pet’s food in the original bag or can, not in a Tupperware or bin, as customs agents may need to check the ingredients for possible forbidden agricultural products.
The last thing you ever want is for your pet to get lost, especially while you’re travelling! Making sure that your pet has a sturdy collar with a clearly legible ID tag and/or a microchip will help increase the chances of finding your pet if he or she does get away from you while on a trip. Be sure that the tag or the microchip data is updated with your current address and phone number.
Consider Using a Crate
If you’re traveling by plane, your pet has to be in a crate (or carrier for pets small enough to fit under the seat). A crate can be very helpful for car trips as well. Not only will it prevent your pet from running around in the car, scratching the seats, slobbering up the windows, and potentially distracting you, it will also help keep your pet safe. If you want to use a crate while travelling with your pet, be sure to acclimate them to the crate first. Put toys or treats inside the crate and encourage your pet to go in and out freely. This will keep the crate from feeling like a prison!
When traveling with your pet by car, be sure to stop often for exercise and potty breaks, and never let your pet stick its head out the window of a moving car as this could cause eye injuries. If your pet tends to get carsick, have them travel on an empty stomach. However, don’t deny water. Remember, a closed car will get hotter than you think, faster than you expect, so never leave your pet unattended in the car, especially during the summer.
Be a Good Guest
When you reach your destination, whether it’s a hotel or a friend or family member’s house, be sure to do everything you can to help your pet adjust. For example, show a cat where its litter box is and show a dog where it can relieve itself outside. Be sure to clean up after your dog at a hotel or in any other public area. You might want to put the pet in its crate rather than leaving it unattended in a hotel room.