Families with pets have a difficult time leaving their canine companions behind when they leave for summer vacation. In fact, some would rather stay home than leave their furry friends. That’s why millions of people opt to take their pets with them to their vacation destination. With a little planning, a vacation that includes your pet can be a fun, fulfilling experience for the whole family.
Here are ten tips that can keep your pet safe and comfortable during car travel:
Consider using a pet restraint or safety harness.
Pets can be seriously injured if the car comes to a sudden stop or is involved in an accident. Some states have laws requiring that animals be restrained in moving vehicles. Be sure to check out the laws in the states that you will be visiting on your vacation.
Just like people, pets can suffer from gastrointestinal upsets when traveling.
Limit your dog’s food and water to non-travel times and do not feed him within two hours of leaving on your trip. Feed your dog small meals on travel days. Take along his regular food to minimize the chances of stomach upset. Be sure to bring cleaning supplies in case your pet has an “accident.”
Keep your dog hydrated but don’t give him large amounts of water at one time.
Take a travel bowl and give him frequent water breaks. If your dog is prone to car sickness give him ice cubes because they are easier on your pet’s stomach than large amounts of water.
Take frequent breaks to allow your dog to stretch his legs and “do his business.” Most rest stops have designated areas for walking pets.
Take along your pet’s favorite toys, pillows, blankets and treats to give him a sense of security and familiarity.
Changes in routines can be upsetting to dogs and having familiar comforts will help him adjust.
Never leave your pet alone in a parked vehicle.
Temperatures in confined spaces in the spring and summer can rise to dangerous levels in a matter of minutes, even if you leave the windows open.
Do not allow your dog to ride with its head outside of the window.
An obstacle close to the vehicle could potentially strike your dog’s head or dirt particles could get into your pet’s eyes.
Make sure your dog is wearing its ID tags and that the information on the tags is current and legible.
Carry a photograph of your dog with you in case your pet gets lost.
Remember to take your pet’s leash.
Do not let him out of the car for even a second without making sure the leash is firmly attached to his collar.
Check in advance to make sure the hotels where you will be staying are pet-friendly.
Make sure you understand their policies. Some hotels that are pet-friendly have weight limits.
Although it requires a little planning on your part, having your pet accompany you on vacation is fun and rewarding. A wagging tail and a cheerful bark make any day brighter.
Are you planning fun adventures with your pet soon?