With spring in full swing, it’s time to start planning your spring and summer vacations. Wait! Don’t forget about your dog. Nothing is quite as fun as planning a vacation, packing up and heading out of town for a weekend or longer trip. It’s always nice to get away. A change of scenery from time to time is good for you and your dog. Why wouldn’t a dog love to travel and be exposed to new places? When planning your trip with your dog, there are a few things to keep in mind that can help make the trip a positive experience for everyone.
How to Prepare Your Dog for Traveling
Visit the Veterinarian
Visit your vet to ensure your dog is healthy and caught up on vaccinations. Make sure to bring these records with you when you travel just in case.
RELATED: Spring Dog Health Tips
Update ID Information
ID your dog. Whether you microchip or have his and your name on his collar, make sure all of the information is current.
Pack the Necessities
When packing, include your dog’s food, food and water dishes, treats, blankets, dog bed, leash, grooming supplies, and toys. Providing familiarity can ensure the physical and mental comfort of your dog. Don’t forget a container of drinking water for the vehicle and a first aid kit.
Locate Dog-Friendly Facilities
Make sure to research dog-friendly accommodations. Find out in advance which hotels at your destination or on your route allow dogs. Many hotels don’t accept dogs, or have size or breed restrictions. If your dog is allowed to stay at a hotel, respect other guests, staff and the property. Remember, one bad experience with a canine guest may prompt the hotel management to deny dogs in the future. Be considerate of others, and leave your room and the grounds in good condition.
Check the Weather
Consider the climate of your destination. Depending on your dog, the change in climate may cause your pet to struggle to adapt. He can become uncomfortable and irritable, which could be a bad experience for everyone.
Plan for Frequent Stops
Frequent stops are not only good for bathroom breaks, but also for stretching. Dogs need to stretch their legs just as much as we do. This is especially essential if you’re traveling in hot weather. Always make sure your dog is hydrated throughout the trip.
Buy a Dog Seat Belt
To keep your dog safe in the car, make sure to use a safety restraint system, such as a dog seat belt, harness or crate. A crate is an excellent way to keep your dog safe in the car, and is required for airline travel. It can also keep your pet from getting into trouble in a hotel or at your host’s home. Stock the crate with a comfortable mat, your dog’s favorite toy and water bottle.
RELATED: Dog Safety in the Car
Bring Ice Cubes
Like humans, some dogs experience motion sickness. Take along ice cubes for your dog to lick and mouth, which are easier on your dog than a large amount of water all at once. Keep feeding to a minimum during travel to prevent an upset stomach and only allow small amounts of water periodically in the hours before the trip.
Vacationing with your dog can help train him various behaviors. By spending a vacation together, you have the opportunity to take advantage of your dog’s undivided attention. Enjoy this time and be safe!
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