The thought of bringing your pet dog with you on vacation is fun, however, it can also alleviate your worry of not knowing what will happen while you’re on the road especially when it’s the first time to take him to travel. Therefore, you need to do your homework on dog travel for you to ensure that your pet will feel comfortable when traveling.
Traveling with a dog can be a bit tricky but it is possible with careful planning. In this post, we’ve put together the following tips and guides to ensure that your dog will feel comfortable while traveling with you.
Visit the Vet First
Before you take your pet with you to travel, it’s important to consult first with a vet to make sure that your dog is healthy enough for the trip. Some prescriptions like a sedative for a dog’s trip anxiety might also come in handy. Motion-sickness for dogs is a common problem you might encounter while traveling. You can ask your vet for medication. A preparation of towel and cleaning supplies can also help if your dog makes a mess in your car.
Traveling with Your Dog in a Car
Taking your dog with you on a road trip can be challenging but there are ways to make it easy and here are some of them.
- Remember a dog-tired pooch is better.
A hyper and lively dog in your backseat can be a disaster. So before you set out for the trip, make sure to exercise the energy out of your dog first. Remember that a little break for your dog in-between your trip is also important. A dog, by nature, doesn’t want to be cramped for a long period. To do this, plan your stops. Choose a grassy and wider place to take your break. You can let your dog run and tire itself out. This is also a good time for you to stretch your legs. Be on the lookout and ensure your dog’s safety when it is outside the car.
- Hydrate your dog throughout the trip
Especially for tropical places, heatstroke can be a real concern for both you and your dog. To prevent this, make sure you always offer water for your dog. You can do this on your trip’s breaks. To make it easy for your dog, bring a collapsible dog bowl. This portable bowl can make eating and drinking for your dog easier and comfortable. Some dogs can also be picky. They might refuse waters that they are not familiar with. Make sure to bring enough water they normally drink.
- Bring your dog’s food and water bowls in the front seat.
Having your pet’s food and drink on the front seat may come in handy because you do not have to stop if you need to feed or give your dog a drink. Simply bring an extra water bottle for him or her and pour it into a bowl as needed. That way, you can simply put the leftover back into the bottle.
- Plot your bathroom breaks
Planning your dog’s bathroom breaks will help make your travel comfortable. By this point, your dog might be potty-trained at some degree. When traveling, your dog’s ability to pee and eliminate on cue is crucial. If your dog is still not trained in its bathroom manners, try to teach it before the travel. You will save a lot of discomforts both for you and travel this way.
- Research and plan your stops and meals beforehand.
This is important so that you’ll know the places where dogs are allowed. Before your trip, try to research and find dog-friendly restaurants and places where you can stop over without having to leave your pet in the car.
Traveling with Your Dog in a Plane
Aside from long drives, you can also choose to take your dog with you when you travel by air. But this can be challenging as well. Here are some tips on how you can make your dog feel comfortable in a plane.
- Know the rules first.
When you want to take your dog with you and travel by air, you need to check first with the airline about their rules about pet travel. A lot of airlines require a health certificate and they may also have rules you don’t know about. To avoid being surprised by those rules at the airport, you can call them and ask about pet travel beforehand.
- Plan ahead the paperwork.
Airline trip can be more complicated. There are some pet policies and necessary paperwork you need to arrange beforehand. Remember that each airline has its own variations on regulations and services. You also need to present your dog’s certification of health to the airline no more than 10 days before travel. Rabies and vaccination certificates are also required. Your dog should be at least 8 weeks old and weaned.
- Do not start the trip on a full stomach or bladder.
When traveling by air, it’s better to let your dog fast for at least 6 hours before the trip and make a pit stop as close to the departure time as possible. But make sure that your pet has access to water that is enough to keep him or her hydrated but not full.
- Know your dog.
This is a very important thing to consider when taking your dog on travel. If your pet is highly anxious or has trouble in public situations, then taking him or her on a flight might not be the best idea. This is really fine and at the end of the day, you just have to make the right decision for your pet.
Packing List when Traveling with Your Dog
Your dog will feel the ultimate comfort when traveling when you have all his essentials. If you will be preparing soon, here are some of the things you might want to include in your list.
- Food: Dog food is one of the most important things that you should not forget to bring when you travel with your pet. The amount of dog food you should bring depends on how long you’re going to travel. Changing your dog’s food gradually is not a good idea that’s why it’s better to bring his or her food than to just bank on buying food on your destination or along the way.
- Travel-Friendly Food and Water Bowls: Bringing portable and travel-friendly food and water bowls are also essential so that you can feed your dog easily even while on the road. These portable water bowls will make it easy for you to pack your dog’s water and food and feed them as well.
- Dog Bed: Bringing a dog bed or mat can also help your pet feel more comfortable while on the road. You can place it at the backseat of your car where your dog can lounge and sleep.
- Crate: If possible, it’s also great if you can have a dog crate with you when you travel. It can be used as your dog’s safe place for example if you run out for a meal or an adventure where you can’t bring your pet, you will not worry about him in the hotel or wherever you’re staying in because he’s safe in his crate.
- Toys: Another thing that can make your dog feel more comfortable when traveling is by bringing his favorite toys with you. These toys can be endless entertainment for your pet and might help keep them calm on the road.
- Medication and Supplements: If your dog is taking some medications or supplements, do not forget to pack it when you travel.
- Collar, Leash, and Harness: These may also come in handy once you reach your destination. Your dog might get curious about a new place, therefore, a collar, leash, or harness is important to have to ensure that you always have your pet close to you.
These are some of the best ways on how you can make your dog feel comfortable when traveling with you. Traveling with your dog can be a fun experience for you and your pet. Even though it’s quite challenging, the secret is to just always be prepared wherever you go. Just make sure that your dog is fit enough to travel and is calm and assertive. Who knows, your dog might be the best travel companion you’ll have in life.