As a pet owner there may be some times you may want to take your dog with you on vacation or short trip. This can be exciting and also very challenging as well. When planning on taking your pet with you, there will be some preparation you will need to do prior to leaving. Being prepared is the best thing you can do to keep your vacation a safe and happy one for everyone including your pet.
Auto safety is important. Be sure that your dog is secure while traveling. If you have to stop suddenly, your dog could get injured if not secured.
This article will try to help you in trying to make this planning a whole lot easier.
You may be thinking just what type of preparation planning must I do? This is a very good question. Let’s answer it. Below is a list of items you will need to consider before taking your dog with you on your next trip:
- Bowls for his water and food
- Crate (if it fits in your car)
- Sleeping Bed or Mat
- Dog Leash & Tag
- Vaccination Record
- Places to stop for relieving himself
- Disposable Poop Bags
You may think of some other items to add to the above list.
Bowls For Water & Food
When you pet goes into a new environment that he is not used to, helping him to remember any aspect of home will be helpful. This should include his regular feeding and drinking water bowls. This may help your pet to adjust to his surroundings and eat more regular and relax him.
Some pets may have a reaction to car or van traveling and you may find it difficult for him to eat at his regular times. You may need to be flexible in this area. When your family eats you should also feed your pet so he does not beg for any table scraps.
As you stop for bathroom breaks, be sure that your dog goes as well. Also provide him an opportunity to get some exercise time by walking and running.
When traveling it’s best and safest to place your dog in a travel crate. A travel crate will help him to feel comfortable and relaxed while traveling and in the event of a sudden stop or accident, he will be protected. This will keep your pet safe while traveling from place to place.
If you do not have a crate, be sure he is secured in a dog seat belt.
This is a very important item that should not be overlooked. You may think that you can buy his food at the location where you are staying. You may be challenged in finding the store in town that carries his brand of food. You want to be sure to feed your dog the same food that he has been eating every day. Be sure to pack enough of his food when traveling. Use the following tip:
- Determine the number of days away from home
- Determine the total number of feedings (usually twice a day)
- Multiply the total feedings by the number of days to get total feedings for the trip
- Pack the amount of food calculated above.
This is a often another missed item when traveling. You should only give him the treats you have been using during his regular training sessions. Bring enough of them along. You may need them as you allow for a certain number of breaks for him to do his business and have some exercise. When he displays the proper behavior, give him a treat. Be sure to limit the treats to no more than 10% of his daily total food intake for the day.
Be sure to contact your veterinarian and secure a copy of his vaccinations. Some states may require his health certificate. Be sure to check ahead of time as to which type of documentation is required at the places you are staying. Many places where you stay may require seeing a copy of his vaccination record or health certificate or both. Without one, you may wind up at the local vet clinic getting shots that have already been given to your pet earlier and costing you some additional expense you were not planning for.
Another over looked item is the dog tag. Before you leave be sure you have attached a dog tag on your pet. This is in the event that he should get lost somewhere on the way to your destination.
The identification tag should include:
- Phone Number or Email Address
So you can be contacted if your lost pet if found.
The above are just a few things that need to be considered before taking your dog on a traveling vacation trip. You will also have to make sure that the hotel where you are staying at will accept pets and what are the local requirements for having a pet to stay there. Be sure to ask these important questions at the time of booking your reservations.
You also need to bring a leash as some of the local ordinances may require it when taking him out for a walk and doing his business.
It’s important that as you travel, what you can take from home will help your dog to adjust to his/her new surroundings much easier. Especially as you go from hotel to hotel or place to place before arriving at your final destination and then coming home.
As you go on your trip, be sure to plan for breaks. This not only includes all family members but your pet as well. When you have a break do not leave your pet in the car alone on a hot day. Be sure to have him get his exercise too. He may also need to do his business. Allow enough time for both.
Do not forget that he needs to drink water. It is vital that he stays hydrated throughout the entire trip. If you get thirsty, your dog is also getting thirsty too.
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