Let’s face it. Traveling is always an exciting adventure. But, when you’ve got pets to leave behind, going away for so long can be tainted with anxiety. It’s normal to worry about how your pets are going to be. For others, they don’t have anyone around town to leave their pets with. Or it could simply be that you can’t do without your pets. There’s simply that desire to bring them along with you.
If this is what you really, really want to do, then why not do so? It may seem a little challenging at first, but once you get the hang of it, you can master the art of traveling comfortably with your pets. You can think of it in like manner as you would travel with kids. Your pets may not be able to internalize where they’re headed, but you’re saving them the anxiety of suddenly not seeing you for a long time. You get to create brand new memories with your pets, too.
That said, if this is an endeavor that you’re excited to try out, here are some tips to guide you by:
- Research The Embassy Requirements
Different countries have their embassy requirements when it comes to traveling along with pets. So, as you plan your holiday, this is one of the first steps you’re going to have to undertake.
At the very least, you’ll want to avoid those countries that’ll require your pet to be quarantined upon arrival, as you’ll still be separated from your pal anyway. This will only make you and your furry companion even more anxious. Some countries require more vaccines than others, so this is also something that you’ll necessarily have to comply with.
There are two ways for you to go about this process. You can call the embassy, or even check their website.
- Start With Car Travel
If you have the option to travel by car for this holiday, this is a great first-time test journey for your pets. Car travel is often going to be the easiest adjustment for dogs before you go full blast with cross-country or air travel.
When you know that you’ll be traveling long distance with your car, these tips will come in handy:
- It also helps to ask for a sedative from your veterinarian. In doing so, you immediately have it on hand, only whenever you need it. It’s normal for pets to be stressed even with car travel, especially when the distance is going too far.
- It’s also good to stop once every three or four hours, so you can take a few minutes to let your pet have some fresh air and walk around a little bit. This will do good not only for your pet but even for you, too. You have some time to stretch your legs.
- Have your Innovet Pet, pet supplies with you inside the car, like shampoo or supplements, so that whenever you need it, it’s immediately within reach.
- Study The Conditions Of The Airline Company You’re Flying With
Every airline has their own set of rules that one must comply with, for you to be able to bring your cat or dog. Generally, for smaller pets, you can put this in an approved carrier that fits right under your seat. For bigger ones, you’re going to have to place your dog in the approved kennel or crate by the airline at the cargo section.
Air travel may be a little bit trickier, as your pet will surely adjust to the air pressure. It’s for this reason that you’re going to have to be very prepared about how you can help your pal adjust better.
That said, here are some tips for you to ensure a smoother journey:
- For car travel, it might be acceptable to sedate your dog. But, when it comes to air travel, it’s not advisable to sedate dogs, or else the change in the air pressure might cause serious health problems for your pet.
- Be sure that you abide by the routine veterinary check required by the airline company you’re flying with.
- Book the most direct flight, so you can avoid any unnecessary layovers, as this can be very stressful for your dog.
- Pack a leash with you so that your dog is always close by during security checks.
- Be Sure To Prepare The Necessary Health Certificates
Depending on where you’re headed to, each destination may have its own set of health certificates and other documents that they’ll require you to prepare. Be sure that you research all of these first before you visit your veterinarian for a routine check before your trip. That way, your veterinarian can comply with all of these health certificates in one go. Also, you’re sure that you’re not missing out on any important document.
For this purpose, you should visit your pet’s veterinarian at least ten days before your trip, so that all records are of a very recent period.
As you prepare all of these necessary health certificates, don’t just have hard copies of these. It’s prudent to have electronic copies also stored on each of the devices that you’re bringing along with you. That way, should you lose any of the hard copy documents, you still have electronic copies with you. Also, whenever it’s asked from you, you immediately have a copy to show right at the comfort of your phone.
- Study The Rules For Bus And Train Travel
For shorter bus and train travel, like the public transportation that will take you from one end of the city to another, you may not encounter a lot of problems with bringing along your pets, for as long as they’re secured in a bag, carrier or a leash. You have to study each rule that you’ll need compliance with, for every train ride for your dogs, so you don’t get lodged off the journey.
But, if you’re traveling long-distance on bus and train travel, there are certain restrictions that you’ll also have to comply with. Unfortunately, most major bus and train operators such as Greyhound and Amtrak don’t allow pets inside the carriage or coach, unless they’re service animals.
If you are traveling with a service animal, be sure that you also have the proper certifications to prove such, so that you won’t fall into any trouble with the law of the places that you’re visiting.
- Research Local Veterinarians On Each Place You’re Visiting
As you prepare for the trip, part of your research should also involve getting information on trustworthy veterinarians on each place that you’re visiting. That way, should anything happen to your pet while you’re on the trip, you don’t feel confused or lost as to where to go.
This step is especially important when you’re traveling to a country where the people aren’t native English speakers. To avoid any miscommunication and added stress, it’s better to know where to go, in the event of an emergency.
- Study The Conditions By Rideshare Companies
If you’re planning on engaging in the services of rideshare companies a lot as you transfer from one end of the city to another, you’ll also have to study the necessary conditions set out by rideshare companies.
Generally, these are allowable but will be at the discretion of the driver, as they own the car. After you book your ride, you should call the driver immediately and inform them if they’d be willing to take in your pet. If they are, then at least bring a blanket for you to prop your pet on, just as a gesture of respect, for you not to mess up or spread dirt inside the driver’s vehicle.
If you’re bringing a service animal, then this is allowable at all times. Even when this is the case, give that heads up, as some drivers might be allergic to dogs or cats.
- Refrain From Bringing Too Much Pet Food
There’s no need for you to bring so much pet food during your trip. Not only will this take up luggage weight from you, but it will also be subject to a lot of inspections across borders. It can just be an added stress to have to go through all of these inspections.
When it comes to your dog food, it’s understandable that you have your trusted brands. But, because you’re traveling, rather than focusing on the brand, take note of the ingredients instead.
When you do this, you can shop for pet food at your destination by looking at the ingredients your pet uses.
With these tips, now you know how to start planning for that holiday with your pets. If you used to leave them behind but felt so bad about having to do so, now you don’t have to stare at those puppy dog eyes with so much pain and guilt in your heart. If this is something that you can afford to do and make possible for your pets, it can be quite an enjoyable holiday too, to bring them along with you. Admittedly, it’s going to take a little more planning and effort, but it’s not an impossible task. Before you know it, all that anxiety will be traded in for happy smiles and a grateful, wagging tail.