Tips for Traveling with Your Pet to Add Joy to the Journey

By Jonny Hobs | Oct 18, 2019
Pet Transport Animals

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    Are you considering traveling with your pet? Unfortunately, long distances can be highly stressful on your four-legged companion. That said, with proper planning, you can enjoy a stress-free journey with your pet.

    The following are expert tips on travelling with your pet.

    Research pet regulations of your destination

    Pet regulations differ from state to state; not just across international borders. For example, different states will have different rules on pet vaccination. At certain interstate crossing lines, you will be required to provide proof of your pet’s rabies vaccination.

    Also, are you going to stay or it is just a road trip? If you are going to stay, make sure you choose a pet-friendly hotel or apartment.

    Conduct a trial run

    Have you ever taken your dog on a trip in your car before? Pets react differently to a car ride. Ultimately, they will get used to it. However, before embarking on a long trip, take your pet on a short trip to see how it will react.

    If they get frightened, you might have to perform several test rides until they get comfortable staying in a moving car.

    Prepare your pet’s packing checklist

    You have a packing list. Your pet should have one too.

    Depending on the length of your trip, items to include in your pet’s packing list include travel documents, a waste scoop, leash, medication, and a first-aid kit. Consider a favorite toy or blanket to provide a sense of familiarity.

    You need not necessarily carry food. However, you should consider packing if your pet has a specific diet or food allergies. Speaking of allergies, check out this review of the best dog food for allergies.

    Secure your pet

    According to AAA, unrestrained dogs in a moving car cause about 30,000 accidents annually. Pets freely wandering in a moving vehicle are a distraction for the driver. Besides, if you do not buckle up your pet, it is more likely to get injured should an accident occur.

    There are several options for securing a pet to the car seat:
    Harness with seat belt. You can find a pet harness that you can attach to your car’s seatbelt or seat buckle.
    Travel crate. A travel crate is specially designed for car rides. A good crate is not only cozy but also the right size. Your pet should be able to lie, sit, stand, and turn in the crate. You can create a sense of familiarity in a crate by throwing in a favorite to or blanket.

    Booster seat. A booster seat is a comfortable bucket seat you can secure to the car. It should be deep enough for the size of your pet. Also, ensure it has soft padding for the comfort of your furry friend.

    Regular pit stops

    Even human beings take pit stops while on a long journey. However, with a pet, you will need more frequent pit stops. Your pet gets tired and bored more quickly compared to you.
    The American Veterinary Medical Association recommends a pit stop every two to three hours. These stops allow your pet to use the bathroom and exercise a little. More importantly, the monotony of the car is broken.

    Prepare for emergencies

    When travelling with your pet, you should always carry a pet first aid kit. Also, bring your pet’s medical records in case of an emergency.

    Do not make the common mistake of leaving your pet in the car. On a sunny day, the temperature inside a closed car can go as high as 110 degrees. The alternative, which is leaving a window open leaves your vehicle and pet vulnerable to theft. You can minimize medical emergencies related to heat by keeping your pet hydrated.

    Another common mistake that might result in a medical emergency is allowing your pet to stick its head out when you are driving. You might think the fresh air is good but end up in the vet ER due to respiratory problems or ear damage.

    Another emergency you need to prepare for is your pet getting lost. You should attach a tag to your pets’ collar that has its name, your name, and your contact details.

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    Written by Jonny Hobs

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