Traveling Safely with Pets

Tips for bringing your furry friends along by car, train, or plane.

Planning a trip can be stressful… especially when you don’t know what to do with your pet. Some animals make great travel companions, but just like humans, each pet is unique and reacts to the world differently. These tips will help you and your pet have a more relaxed journey.

Make Sure Your Pet is Up for the Trip

Pre-travel preparation is extremely important with or without a pet. Traveling can be stressful for certain pets. Consider your pet’s personality before booking a trip. Also, consult with your vet if you have any concerns about your pet being healthy enough for the adventure or certain environments. If your pet has never been on a long trip before, you may want to gradually ease them into it. Make sure they are comfortable with with strangers and being in unfamiliar environments.

Book Everything Ahead of Time

Book your travel accommodations early and always call to confirm that you can get a pet-friendly room. Many hotels will only have a certain number of rooms available for guests with pets. Airlines and trains also have a set capacity for pets, so make sure there is a spot for your pet ahead of time. Check with your airline’s species and breed restrictions. Most airlines restrict pets that are more susceptible to changes to temperature and humidity.

Identification and Documents

You should never travel with pets unless they are wearing a tag with your most current information. It’s also a good idea to purchase a temporary tag for your pet’s collar with the location and phone number of the hotel that you plan to stay at. It is highly recommended that if you have not already, to microchip your pet. Microchipping is a safe and permanent form of identification for your pet. Just make sure you keep your contact information current with the microchip registry database.

It’s also a good idea to have copies of your pet’s medical history in the event of a medical emergency. Some states require specific documents and proof of vaccinations, so a quick trip to the vet might be worth your time before traveling across the country.

Keeping Your Pet Safe and Comfortable

Your crate or carrier should be large enough for your pet to sit, stand, and turn around in without any problems. It should be secure and not slide around when the vehicle or plane moves or stops. Introduce your pet to their new carrier at home before going on your trip so that they can get comfortable with it. Cushion your pet’s carrier with a favorite blanket or a clothing item with your scent to relax your pet if they feel distressed.

If you are traveling with your pet by car and don’t plan to use a crate or carrier, make sure that your pet rides safely with its head inside the window. Keep pets in the back seat and in a harness that your can attached to the car’s seat belt buckle. Preventing your pet from wandering around the car freely will keep them safe and reduce distraction for the driver..

Whether you a traveling by car, plane, or train, make sure you take your animal out for a long walk before laving on a long trip. It will help your pet sleep through a lot of the trek. Take lots of breaks to let your pet relieve themselves and stretch their legs. Give your pet light and dry meals that don’t upset their stomach or cause any discomfort. Never leave your pet alone in the car, and if you are traveling be plane, don’t be shy – ask the airline staff about your pet as soon as you land. We hope these tips helped you prepare for an exciting adventure for you and your traveling companion

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