Whether you wouldn’t dream of going on vacation without your four-legged friend, or you need to make a long drive for a more pressing reason, traveling with a dog can be done - and in many cases, it is a great experience. But like most things, preparation is important, especially when it comes to your dog's safety and happiness.
Tips for Traveling with Your Dog
In the same way that you get ready for a trip, you need to make sure your dog is packed and ready to go too. If you are planning to road trip with your dog, you should:
- Plan Your Trip - Make sure you know where you’ll be going, how long it will take, and where you will stop. Not all hotels are dog friendly, so check with each place you plan on staying.
- Getting Your Dog Ready - A long road trip should not be the first time your dog is in the car. If you haven’t traveled recently, take your dog on increasingly longer car trips to get him comfortable with car rides. This will help prevent car sickness.
- Pack Smart - Pack a bag for your dog that has more than enough food for the trip, medications, leash, waste bags, a first aid kit, and grooming supplies. You should also bring your dog’s food bowls and a blanket or toy so they have familiar belongings in a strange place.
- Carry Identification - Especially if you are crossing state lines or traveling internationally, bring your dog’s identification papers and rabies vaccination record. Your pet should also be microchipped in case you get separated.
- Adjust the Feeding Schedule - Since a recent meal can cause an upset stomach, feed your dog a smaller portion than at least three to four hours before you leave. Don’t feed your dog again until you stop for the evening.
- Securing Your Dog - The safest place for your dog to be in a moving car is in her crate with the crate secured. A dog should not be allowed to roam through the car or able to stick her head out of a window. Both mean the dog could be severely injured in an accident.
- Stop Often - Just like you, your dog needs a chance to get out, stretch, and use the bathroom. Vets recommend stopping at least once every two hours for a quick break.
A road trip with your dog doesn’t have to be stressful. A little preparation and keeping your dog’s needs in mind during the drive will help both of your enjoy the journey. And of course, if you want to take a road trip without worrying about your dog, the pet sitters at FurBabies are always happy to help. Give us a call today to learn more.