Pets understand humans better than humans do. Cuddling with your furry friend can reduce stress and loneliness in your life. The moment you adopt a pet, it becomes an integral part of your family. Pets are included in family events and outings regularly. So, why should they be left behind when one decides to go on vacation? Even if you’re not willing to take your pet along, the costs of hiring pet sitters will convince you otherwise.
Additionally, and quite sadly, many dogs have separation anxiety. If you own a dog, they can become devastated if you go away from them for a few days. Now, doesn’t your four-legged friend deserve a vacation too?
Travelling with your pet can be a far more significant responsibility than travelling alone or with family. Planning a trip already comes with dozens of checklists. To avoid running into roadblocks later, you’ll have to make sure beforehand if your travel destination welcomes pets.
Your priority should be to keep the pet calm and comfortable. It’s recommended to begin researching pet-friendly hotels and travel spots well before your journey start to avoid panicking later. For example, if you’re planning a trip to Tennessee, search for pet friendly cabins in Gatlinburg to find holiday spots that welcome you along with your pet.
What to Do Before Traveling With Pets
It doesn’t matter if you’re taking a trip across the oceans or a fun car ride within the country. It will help if you put together all the arrangements necessary for a seamless journey with your pet. If you are travelling with a pet or if you need assistance in coping with a service dog, planning is essential. Whether getting official support status for your pets on services such as MyServiceAnimal Registrar or making sure that you plan ahead to make both of your trip easier and carefree is essential. That being said, it’s not something you can get done within a day or two. Read on to find some tips on how to travel with your pet.
1. Make Some Calls
Take an entire day to make some important calls. Call your hotel, car rental, airline’s help centre, the airport, bus station, subway, and any places you’re planning to visit on your trip. Primarily, ask them if they allow pets. If yes, what are the necessary documents and other protocols?
However, if you’re running low on time, contact a pet relocation company and get the know-how of travelling with pets. They’ll give you an overview of the necessary documents, travel routes, pet crates, etc.
2. Get Your Pet Vaccinated
Most countries require specific blood tests, special vaccinations, and a health certificate from a credible veterinarian to allow your pets to enter the vicinity. Failure to abide by these requirements may lead to temporary separation from your pet, which can be extremely stressful for them.
You will then have to wait for your pet to complete a quarantine period before you are allowed to take them with you. Note that some countries may require additional notary stamps on pet health certificates as a formality.
3. Invest In A Pet Crate
Unless you own a purse dog, you’ll need to purchase a crate to house your pet during the journey. Do not overrule the need for a container if you’re travelling by car. The container can be the pet’s own little personal space. It’ll also keep your pet in place throughout the journey.
If you’re travelling by air, there’s no way airport security will let an animal in without a crate. Let your pet get familiar with the container. Place it somewhere in your home with the door open and put your pet’s favourite toy inside. That way, they’re not going to act up when the time comes.
Some pets find it difficult to leave the house. They get the feeling of abandonment while doing so, especially cats. Take your pet on a walk around the airport or whichever station you’re travelling from. If you don’t have time to do that, reach a few hours early from departure time.
Show your pet around. Let them get familiar with the smells and atmosphere. Introducing pets to a new place can get very stressful if you don’t give them enough time to get comfortable. A little stroll around the area can also make your pet tired and sleep during the trip.
5. Pack The Essentials
Pets have trouble adjusting to new places and accessories. Make sure you pack their bed, bowls, favourite toy, towel, leashes, first aid goods, and clothing (if it gets chilly). Pack more than enough food. Research has shown that among other products lavender oil has calming effects on dogs.
Purchase some and sprinkle it around the crate or carrier. It might help them remain calm during the journey.
6. Consider Implanting A Microchip On Your Pet
An unfamiliar city or country is no place for pets to get lost in. Never risk losing your pet, and implant a microchip to track them. Travellers are vulnerable to get their belongings stolen or lost on trips. Make sure it’s not your pet is not one of them!
If you’re not particular about getting your pet a microchip, at least ensure that their collar has all your necessary contact information written on it.
7. Skip A Meal
The last thing you’d want on your trip is your pet going through anxiety diarrhoea. The unpleasantness of the situation can even get them suspended from the boarding process. It’s best if you skip your pet’s last meal to avoid such circumstances. Be mindful of giving your pet a bathroom opportunity before boarding as well. Make sure your pet is hydrated but not too much.
8. Don’t Leave Your Pet Alone For Too Long
Your life is never the same after you adopt a pet. You’re the only person they trust and bond with. Try not to leave your pet alone in the car for too long especially in hot climates. Multiple reports have shown that this can be fatal if they get heatstroke and in some rare cases have even died due to suffocation. If you’re leaving them in your hotel room, leave the TV on, but try not to stay away for very long periods of time. If you’re going to use the bathroom at a public place, ask a trustable person (preferably someone who works there) to look after the animal.
9. Not Everyone Loves Your Pet
Remember, you’re walking into a new city with millions of people who possess varying cultural values and preferences. Some people might even have zoophobia (the fear of animals). Make sure your pet is tamed before travel, especially if it’s a dog. Keep your pet at a certain distance from other people. If someone appears terrified of your pet, it is your responsibility to take them far away from the situation as soon as possible. In another scenario, if someone tries to get too friendly with your pet, give them a clear warning to avoid upsetting or even over exciting the animal.
10. Prioritize The Pets Comfort Over Yours
As mentioned earlier, adopting a pet will change your life forever. Instead of looking for luxurious accommodation for yourself, go for a pet-friendly one. Some pet-friendly hotels even offer a gourmet room service menu for pets! To further ensure that they have as a stress-free and enjoyable time as you do, invest time to establish the hotel room as “home” for your pet.
Be sure to plan your trip to include tourist spots good for your pet as well. That way, you are able to take in the sites with your best friend by your side.
No one appreciates a new place like a dog. However, some animals are most comfortable in the comfort of their home. If your pet is never happy when going out, get nervous or anxious, take it as a no and leave them behind. Yes, they’ll miss you, but will be overjoyed when they see you again!
If you do take them along, ensure their safety and comfort as well as that of other people’s at all times. Be sure that you have everything meticulously planned and ready before you set off on your unforgettable trip.