It takes a lot of work to plan a dream vacation, and if you are a pet parent, you must include them in your plan. Depending on where you are going, traveling with your pet may prove difficult.
There are several legitimate reasons why leaving your dog at home would be a great option, including pet fees, bathroom breaks, and space restrictions. Nevertheless, if you choose to vacation with your pet, there are certain factors you need to consider and steps you can take to ensure your dog is happy and content.
Perform a Health Check
Not all pets like to travel. Before traveling with your dog, you will need to visit your vet for a health check. Your vet will be able to know if your dog is in the proper mental and physical state to travel for an extended period.
Get the Necessary Documentation
When planning to travel with your dog, particularly for international travel, you may require to get some documentation such as:
Just as you would need an ESTA visa for America, your dog may also need a permit for travel, and this is determined by where you are going. This permit can take a while to get, and you will have to start the application process as soon as possible.
Most countries require a health certificate. A pet health certificate is a vet-approved official document stating that your dog is disease free and you are up to date with all of their vaccinations. It also has all their personal details like their age and breed. Only a licensed veterinarian can issue a health certificate.
Depending on your travel destination or the airline you will use, you will be required to have a vaccination certificate showing that your dog has received all the necessary vaccinations.
As you pack for the trip, remember to include what your dog needs. One way to ascertain you have everything is by creating a packing list. This way, you will not forget any essentials.
Food and Water
Food and water are essential that you should carry for your dog, especially if they have certain preferences. Also, look for collapsible bowls for eating as they are easy to move around with.
A crate is a fantastic way to travel with a dog and if you are traveling by air, you will definitely need one. The crate you use should be large enough for your dog to move around, stand and lie down. It should also be well-ventilated with a comfortable and absorbent mat.
Dog Collar or Leash
Do not forget to put a collar on your dog. The collar should have the dog’s name and contact details, like your phone number. You can also add a tag with the details of where you will be staying.
If your dog has a preferred toy, carry it for the trip. This will help keep them calm during the trip and at the destination.
One thing most people forget to pack is bedding. The bedding in your destination hotel or home may not be appropriate for your dog. Carry what they like and what they feel comfortable with.
If your dog uses any medication, do not forget to include it in your list.
Plan For Their Accommodation
As you plan for where you stay, remember your dog as well. Some hotels do not allow pets or have restrictions on the type of pets allowed. If the hotel accepts pets, ensure you understand the guidelines.
Be considerate to other guests. Do not allow your dog o disrupt other guests. Never leave your dog unattended. Pick up after him or her and ensure the environment is safe.
Plan for Emergencies
Anything can happen during a trip. As you travel, research to see if there is a vet clinic where you will be able to get medical services, should there be a health emergency. You can also check vet clinics on your route.
If you’re traveling by road
Take time to prepare them for the travel by sitting with them in the car on your driveway. This will help them have an idea of what to expect during the journey.
If your dog gets car sick, ensure they travel on an empty stomach but provide them with enough water. Keep the vehicle ventilated, and never leave them alone inside it.
If you do not want to put them in a crate, keep them safe using a dog seat belt or car seat. Give them their favorite toy to keep them entertained during the trip.
If You’re Traveling by Air
When traveling by plane, research the temperatures to know how hot or cold it will be and if the weather will be appropriate for your dog. You should also research on the airplane’s policies on pet travel to know:
- When you will need to provide the required documentation including permits and vaccination certificates before your travel date.
- How the dog will travel. Each airline has different regulations on the type and size of crates, the size of the animal, as well as the temperature they can travel in.
Traveling with your dog can be a fun experience if you are well-prepared. Prepare for bathroom breaks, bring their fave toys, and do not forget to pack their food and water. No one understands your dog better than you.