Traveling involves plenty of stress and preparation. Add a dog into the mix and things get even more complicated. We all love our furry friends and many of us can’t imagine our vacation without them. Our pets are like our family members and letting them be part of our unforgettable memories is invaluable. But you can’t just have your dog hop into the car and set off. Safe travel with your dog involves a checklist you should study well before your trip. From health and safety concerns to making sure your dog is comfortable and having fun, there are a few things to keep in mind. So read on to learn about some of the key tips.
A vet visit before the trip
Your dog may not be happy about this, but a checkup with your vet before embarking on your journey is essential. This is not only to make sure your dog is strong and healthy and to obtain a health certificate; it’s also an opportunity to ask for motion sickness medicine if your dog needs it. Moreover, depending on your destination, your dog might need additional vaccinations, which you should deal with well in advance.
If it’s been a while since your dog has been on a trip, it’s good to let them know what they can expect. If this is going to be your dog’s first trip, this step is even more essential. Go for short car rides to get them accustomed to the vehicle. Train them to be comfortable in a carrier or crate. And make sure they listen to your commands.
Proper identification is essential
You can’t predict everything that might happen on the road, so it’s best to be well-prepared. This includes making sure your dog has proper identification in several forms. Nowadays, you can have a microchip inserted under your dog’s skin that will make it possible to identify them if they get lost.
The same goes for tags you can attach to your dog’s collar. You can get the necessary information at places such as PetIDTag and choose the ID tag you think is best suited for your pet. This way, you can be sure your dog will be brought back should you lose sight of them.
Bring enough supplies
Travel means a break from your dog’s usual routine, but it’s essential that some things remain the same. One of those things is food. The middle of your trip is not the time to start experimenting with new brands, so make sure you stock up on the dog food you usually buy and bring enough for the trip. If you’re traveling by car, this shouldn’t be a problem. But if you’re taking a different kind of transport, think about how you can work around this. Or, look up places at your destination that sell the same type of food.
Safety and regulations
There are certain rules you have to follow, both for your dog’s safety and to comply with regulations. For instance, double-check the requirements of your mode of transport. An airline will most likely require you to transport your dog in a crate. But it’s also recommended to keep your pet in a carrier while driving, since they can be unpredictable. Always have a leash within arm’s reach. And never leave your dog alone in your car, even for a few minutes; the temperature inside the car can rise incredibly quickly. Don’t forget to keep your pet hydrated at all times and take frequent breaks. Needless to say, letting your dog put their head out the window in a moving vehicle is out of the question.
While safe travel with a dog certainly requires some extra preparation, if this is what both you and your pet want, it’s worth the trouble. You will be able to make precious memories with your pooch all around the world. So, good luck and have a safe trip!