Travel tips for Fido & Whiskers
The word vacation is almost synonymous with summer and we’re so happy it’s finally here! It is time to get out and explore with your friends, family and just as importantly, your pets. Whether you are including your K9 in all your summer activities or giving them a little R&R of their own, here are a few tips to make sure your summer is destined for greatness.
Bring Them With You
Sometimes as a pet owner the stress of leaving your furry loved ones behind is just too much to bare. If you opt to bring them with you, this can include long car rides or even flights across the country or world. Making sure your pet is comfortable and calm will help to make this experience
enjoyable for everyone involved. Most airlines allow pets, but when booking your flight be sure
to contact the airline directly to confirm and sort out any pre-flight arrangements they may require.
If you are travelling with a smaller dog or cat, they are often allowed as a carry-on so long as their crate or travelling case can fit under the seat in front of you. For a large dog, they will most likely need to travel in cargo; this will require a sturdy metal or plastic crate. If your pet is not already crate trained, start working on it at least a month away from your travel date. This way your pet can get comfortable before the trip which will hopefully alleviate some stress while travelling. To make your pet even more comfortable in their crate prior, line the crate with a familiar blanket or crate mat. The familiar scent will remind Fido that his or her favourite humans are never too far away. If you have a very nervous flyer, tranquilizers are not recommended, but natural supplements can be taken to help calm a nervous pet. If you are still concerned or have questions, make sure you contact your vet to discuss different options for Fido. Make sure your pet is wearing a collar and identification tags in the rare case they get loose or lost. Remember, being prepared is key and will make for a much smoother trip and experience for both you and Fido. Check with your airline for specific instructions and rules.
Get A Sitter
For those of us that need to travel alone, arrangements for your pet must be made before you go. Some animals favour staying at home rather than going to someone’s house or a boarding kennel. This means you will have to hire someone or enlist the help of a friend or family member to take care of Fido and/or Whiskers while you are away. Again, preparedness is key! Make a list of all the things your pets will need while you are away and draft up a daily schedule to make sure your pets’ routine stays the same. Leaving instructions for when and how much your pets are fed is important, along with any special care your pets may need. If you do not want the classic saying “when the cats are away, the mice will play” to come true, let your pet sitter know exactly what is and isn’t okay in terms of behaviour for your pets. Your sitter will need to know if your dog is to be crated when left alone, or if they are or aren’t allowed on furniture. In order to stay organized, lay out any collars, leashes, harnesses, boots and/or coats your dog may need for their daily outings. Make sure to leave a list of phone numbers in case of emergency. It should include your regular vet, an emergency clinic, your number and a number of a relative or neighbour they can contact in case you are unavailable. Also, if you have a pet insurance plan leave details for reference. While you are away having fun, Fido and Whiskers can have a little staycation of their own.
Home Away From Home
If travelling with your pet or leaving them at home isn’t an option, there are loads of boarding facilities and services your cat or dog will love. Depending on the facility, your dog should have access to the outdoors and lots of friends to play with – this is also dependent on your pet’s temperament. If you have any questions about the care your pet will be given, make sure to ask well in advance so there are no last minute surprises or concerns. Summer vacation is an exciting time of year for you and your animals. By being prepared and doing your research everyone
will be sure to have a pawesome time!