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How to Travel with Pets

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How to Travel with Pets

Traveling with pets can be a different kind of adventure, more so if you’ve never done it before. There are a whole bunch of things to worry about, not just for you, but for them. Transportation. Place to stay. Things to do. Food and water. Pet’s health and safety. The airport.

Ugh! It can be overwhelming. But as you’ll soon find out, there is an art to it. There are different ways to travel, so we’ll attack this mini-guide on how to travel with pets based on mode of transport.

By Car

Whether it’s a dog or cat, traveling by car is the easiest by far. You can stop at whim whenever your four-legged friend needs a restroom break, or just a breather to shake off the extra energy or any pent-up stress.

dog grass husky

Besides, dogs enjoy car rides – especially the part where they get to stick their heads out of the window or smell the breeze!

If you are planning to embark on a relatively long trip with your canine or feline friend, take them on random car rides a few weeks before the expedition. Condition them to know that good behavior in the car is rewarded – this could be through either simple praise or a treat.

What to bring for dog

When traveling by car with your dog, there are some essentials you’ll need to carry.

dog in white car

 

  • Dog-proof cover for the seat
  • Food (in plastic bag) and food bowl
  • Water (in a gallon jug) and water bowl
  • Leash
  • Dog bed
  • Harness – offers better control than a choke collar when your dog is excited
  • Potty pad for hotel
  • First aid kit – essentials include liquid bandages, vet gauze, tick pullers; hydrogen peroxide even

What to bring for cat

  • Food and food bowl
  • Water bowl
  • Cat carrier with soft blankets inside
  • Litter
  • Litter box and scooper
  • Leash (depending on your cat)
  • Rabies vaccination certificate might be required
  • First aid kit

By Plane

Flying with your pet is much trickier than a road trip, obviously, double so if the dog is larger than 25lbs and cannot fit under the seat.

One thing you should avoid when flying with your dog or cat is to medicate them in order to calm down, particularly when flying in cargo. A DAP collar which emits stress-zapping hormones can be a nice way to bring down their stress levels instead. You could also try lavender oil as an “association scent” a few weeks prior to the flight.

Something else that could ease them into “flight mode” is letting them hang in their carrier a few weeks before the flight.

What’s more, don’t forget to check the travel requirements for pets as they differ from one airline to the next. When it comes to flying abroad, that is a different case altogether.

What to bring for dog

  • Food – just enough for the initial two feedings; replenish the supplies when you arrive
  • Food bowl
  • Water and water bowl
  • Leash
  • Harness
  • DAP collar or lavender oil to relieve anxiety
  • Health certification issued by a vet not exceeding 30 days before flight, including rabies immunization
  • Dog crate approved for your pet’s breed
  • First aid kit

What to bring for cat

cat at plane

  • Food and food bowl
  • Water bowl
  • Cat carrier with soft blankets inside
  • Leash (depending on your cat)
  • Rabies vaccination certificate
  • Health documentation from vet issued 10 days before flight
  • First aid kit

Other Things to Keep in Mind

  • When traveling by plane, you will be required to register your pet for travel on the same flight you have booked. Details you need to give will be provided by the airline. Also, confirm with the airline you’ll be traveling with what grace period is offered for the registration as this varies.
  • On the day of flight, give fluffy sufficient exercise before crate time. Don’t feed them 6-8 hours before departure; neither should you give them water 2 hours prior. Of course, you don’t want to starve the pet so make sure s/he is not hungry or dehydrated, although the last thing you need is for them to stress out when they need that bathroom break.
  • Book pet-friendly hotels and consider destinations that allow you to bring along your pet.

Follow these guidelines and traveling with your furry companion shouldn’t be such a big deal after all!

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