As you cannot leave your dog at home whilst travelling, you have two options, bring them along with you or arrange for somebody else to look after them. Some people find it very difficult to travel with their pup, but with a little planning and the correct equipment, it can be a fun and rewarding experience for both of you. After all, no trip is complete without your four-legged, fuzzy family member, right?
So, without any further delay, let’s look at our 10 Tips for Travelling With Your Dog.
1. Bring a comfortable crate or dog carrier
This may depend on the size of your dog, and whether you are travelling by car or plane. But you may want to consider using a crate or carrier in which you can keep your dog throughout their journey. It's important to make sure that the crate has enough space for the dog to easily sit and lay down. The dog should also be able to comfortably turn around. Using a quality dog carrier will make going from one place to another much easier.
2. Practice makes perfect
Some dogs are not always comfortable with long car rides. To make them familiar with road trips, try to take the dog out on a drive for a few times prior to the actual journey. This way, the dog will remain calm and comfortable, and become familiar with being in the car for extended periods of time. Ultimately this will make the actual journey much easier. If your are planning to travel by air, then it's important that your dog gets familiar with their crate, and is comfortable staying in it for an extended period of time.
3. Figure out a feeding schedule
You have to make sure that you don’t feed the dog during the journey. Feed the dog 2 or 3 hours before the departure. After that, you can feed the dog after reaching your destination.
4. Pack your dog’s travel kit
Depending on how long your trip is you may want to considering packing a doggy travel kit, containing all of your dog's essential items. This kit could include the following items:
- Vaccination & registration papers
- Food & bowl
- Dental chews
- Dog leash and/or muzzle
- Waste scoop
- Grooming supplies
- First aid kit
By bringing these things, you will be well equipped to deal with any potential mishaps whilst on your trip.
5. Update microchip and collar information
Before you travel you should double check that your dog's microchip and registration details are up to date, along with the contact information on their collar. This will ensure in the unfortunate event that your dog gets lost in an unfamiliar place anybody that finds them can contact you or scan their microchip.
6. Bring vaccination documentation
Next, you need to bring along your dog's travel papers, vaccination papers or any other important documentation. Whilst crossing state or country borders, sometimes you may be asked to produce the documents relating to the dog. So be well prepared by ensuring you have all of the necessary documents ready to go.
7. Check airline policies if travelling by air
Depending on your travel arrangements, you may need to take your dog on a plane at some point. So, if you are traveling with an airline, make sure to check the policies of the airline relating to pets. Then, based on their policies, fulfil all of the requirements in order to ensure your dog gets on the plane with you. You should easily be able to find an airlines policy, by searching google for "name of airline + pet policy".
8. Plan dog-friendly activities
Once you have reached your destination, you cannot neglect your dog. Hence, it is extremely important that you plan dog friendly activities to keep your dog happy. Leaving the dog alone will make it lonely and will definitely have a negative impact on their overall behaviour. Be sure to read up on the local areas dog policy, and if you are travelling to national parks make sure you are aware of the rules, as fines can be handed out.
9. Bring drinking water from home
This will depend on your travel arrangements, but if you know you are going to areas with uncertain water availability it is best if you bring drinking water for your dog from home. This is mainly because, drinking water from unknown water sources may make your dog sick and lead to expensive vet bills. Though their stomachs can probably handle more than ours, it's still better to be safe than sorry.
10. Exercise before the journey
Lastly, before you leave for the journey, make sure that you take your dog out for some exercise. This will ensure that your dog will be ready to rest during the journey, and you won't have to deal with an excited or anxious dog.
There you have it, 10 Tips For Travelling With Your Dog. We hope that these tips will allow you to have a nice and smooth journey with your dog. Just keep in mind that you will have to be patient throughout the journey, and don't forget to stop for lots of toilet and water breaks!
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