Want to spend your next vacation with your pet? You’ll have to account for a few things, do some additional planning, and pack specifically with your fur baby’s needs in mind.
Travel with Your Pet
That said, the preps will all be worth it as it’ll give you and your pet a smoother and more enjoyable experience together. With that in mind, here’s what you need to know if you plan on traveling with your little companion:
You’ll Need to Plan for Your Pet’s Feeding Schedule
While you hop from one place to another based on your itinerary, you’ll have to account for and maintain your pet’s regular feeding schedule. After all, you don’t want them to go hungry during your trip because you missed their usual feeding times.
In case the travel time between any two destinations on your itinerary is rather long, it’s a good idea to bring some snacks in a few dog treat bags. These snacks can not only help you keep your pup satiated between regular mealtimes, but they can also calm them down in case they’re experiencing travel-related stress or anxiety.
You Should Schedule a Vet Check-Up for Your Dog Before the Trip
Many airlines require passengers with pets to provide specific health certificates and vaccination records for their fur babies. You may also have to submit your pet to procedures like blood tests.
In most cases, your vet can provide you with most of these health-related documents and conduct any necessary exams. So, make sure to schedule ample time to acquire all these records, tests, and requirements. Review all your dog’s vaccinations and get them updated if necessary. Don’t forget to bring your pet’s existing health records to the clinic so that the vet can properly assess which vaccinations your pet already has and which will need to be updated.
Apart from their shots, you should also have the vet check if your pet is mentally and physically fit to travel. Your vet can inform you if your pet is exhibiting a health problem or condition that may worsen if they travel with you.
You Should Make Sure You’ve Packed All of Your Pet’s Essentials
This should go without saying, but make sure that you pack enough bottled water, pet food, and any medication your pet is taking for the duration of your trip. If possible, consider bringing a little extra of everything to stay on the safe side. This is because you’ll likely have a hard time restocking these items if they’re not readily available at your destination.
While you can store most of your pup’s necessities in your check-in luggage, you’ll want to pack a small supply of them in your carry-on bag just in case you need to use them while on the go.
You’ll Need to Use a Spacious Crate That’s Appropriate for Travel
The right crate can go a long way to keeping your dog safe and comfortable while traveling in a car or on a plane. When choosing a crate for your trip, make sure there’s enough space in it for your pet to lie down, stand, and turn around. The crate should also be well-ventilated and leak-proof on both sides.
Once you’ve chosen and bought a crate, don’t forget to cover its floor with an absorbent material like towels just in case your pup accidentally does their business while in transit. If you’ll be taking your pet on a plane and need to have your dog put in the cargo area, make sure that the crate has a “live animal” sticker featuring arrows in an upright position. Near the sticker, leave a label that includes your name and phone number so that the flight crew can contact you in case of any emergencies relating to your pet.
You’ll Need to Acquaint Your Dog with the Crate Before the Flight
For a pup that’s not used to traveling, spending long hours inside a crate and in an unfamiliar environment like an airplane cabin can make them feel very stressed and anxious. This, in turn, can cause them to bark incessantly or even vomit, poo, or pee during the flight. The last thing you’d want, apart from seeing your fur baby in distress, is to receive noise complaints from or to inconvenience other passengers.
So, well before the trip, take the time to familiarize your dog with the crate they’ll stay in for travel. Spend a few weeks training them to stay inside the crate with minimal barking. Training your pet to be on its best behavior while in the crate will save both of you from a lot of stress during your flight.
There may be a lot of preparation involved when traveling with your pet, but all the effort will be worth it once you arrive at your destination. After all, being well-prepared will prevent you and your pup from experiencing any additional and unnecessary stress.
Whenever possible, always start planning your next vacation with your fur baby as early as possible, and be sure to triple-check that you’ve got all your pet’s travel-related requirements ready well before your trip. Doing so will reward you and your pet with a hassle-free adventure and unforgettable memories together.