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Want to travel with your pet on a vacation? Honestly, it’s as much packing for my dog as it was for my kids.
It was all worth it though, the joy my dogs experienced being with the family on vacation was worth it.
Seeing them running, playing in the water or trotting alongside us during hikes, more than made up for all the work.
Dogs and some cats can be excellent traveling companions. However, certain precautions and considerations are basic.
Make sure your pet is wearing a current I.D.
If your pet gets lost, you need a way for the finder to reach you.
When I’m traveling I always attach the name of my hotel and phone number just in case my cell phone is being funky and not picking up service.
If your pet gets lost it’s easy to notify the front desk they may receive a call.
On long road trips, give your pet daily exercise.
- For car trips your pets will need at least half an hour of a vigorous game of fetch, a walk or a jog with you is important for mental stimulation before you head out in the car.
- When on vacation take a leash that allows your pet to roam ahead.
- It’s never a good idea to let your dog run loose, especially in a strange area. Only do so if they well trained to come back to you on command.
- Keep cats on a harness attached to a leash for safety reasons. Cats have a tendency to bolt more than dogs in strange places.
Never leave a pet in a sealed car on a hot day.
- You should never leave a let in a car. A temperature outside of just 70 degrees can heat a car up to 89 degrees in less than 10 minutes.
- Cars act like solar ovens and pets can go into heat prostration leading to brain injury or even death.
- In many states leaving pets in hot cars is a crime.
Take familiar items with you.
- A blanket or your dog’s form of bedding from home can make any animal feel safe, comfortable and more at ease during road trips or vacations.
- Favorite toys help give your pet something to do.
Use commercial pet health foods for convenience.
- Before traveling add Vitamin C and Vitamin B complex to help travel animals deal with stress.
- Stress is a known cause of Vitamin C depletion in dogs.
- Emotional stress can be brought on by traveling, moving, or even demanding training sessions.
- Average dogs can produce about 18 milligrams of Vitamin C, per pound of a dogs weight.
- A dog produces about 18 milligrams of vitamin C per pound of body weight per day.
- You’ll want to build up your dog’s tolerance two weeks before traveling. Begin with 100 mg.
- The second day, you’ll increase by an additional 100 mg of Vitamin C until you reach 500 milligrams.
- Too much Vitamin C will cause diarrhea in dogs. You’ll want to be aware of your dog’s stool when beginning Vitamin C dosing.
- If the stools are loose and runny, decrease the dosage. The amounts vary for each individual dog, so you’ll want to pay attention while dosing.
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Expect nature’s calls.
Dogs—Take a dog for a walk at least twice a day or every 4 hours. Carry disposable bags on your dog’s leash to clean up after your pet.
Cats—Traveling with cats is difficult. In fact, it can be smelly, messy and a big hassle. However, you’ll need a litter box on the floor.
Another great option are these carriers with a built-in litter box.
Pet Fit For Life Collapsible Portable Litter Box and Bonus Collapsible Water BowlCheeringPet, Cat Travel Cage: Portable Pop Up Pet Crate with Collapsible Litter Box, Foldable Feeding Bowl, Hanging Feather Teaser and Ball, Carrying Bag, Extra Large 32″ X 19″ X 19″A4Pet Portable Cat Travel Litter Box, Litter Carrier, Easy to Use in Car or HotelIRIS Travel Cat Litter Pan, Yellow
Prepare for health problems common to most travelers.
- Dogs often wind up becoming constipated when traveling.
- This is most often caused by lack of water, exercise or anxiety about new places, strange territories.
- Most often constipation is temporary and will clear up on its own. Giving your dog fruits and vegetables can aid in constipation. Figs, prunes, fresh berries or bran and oats can help get things moving again.
- Pets may become nauseous when riding in cars or planes. They will either vomit or begin to salivate.
- Providing the B-complex supplementation will help prevent nausea.
- Encourage your pet to lie down on the floor of your car.
- If they wind up with motion sickness, give your dog peppermint tea or capsules. (Peppermint tea is best not given to cats). The peppermint will help to settle your dog’s stomach.
- I always have my dogs fast at least 12 hours before we leave on a trip. It helps in the event she gets sick. If traveling by plane a 24-hour fast will help to keep kennels clean during the plane rid.
- To help minimize anxiety or an upset dog before traveling you can use Aconitum Napellus 30C.
- Giving one pellet an hour before leaving home, then another before a few minutes before leaving the house of this homeopathic remedy will help to settle your pet.
- Give your dog one more pellet before getting on the plane. Just one pellet. This homeopathic medicine is safe and often better than a tranquilizer.
Eye Irritation From Hanging Out Windows
Eye irritation can happen in dogs that like to ride with their head sticking out windows.
Dust and debris can get into your dog’s eyes while traveling at high speed. This can cause the cornea to become scratched and irritate the eyes sensitive membranes.
When my dogs were puppies, we never opened the windows. This way as they got older sticking their heads out the windows was not something they were interested in doing.
- If your dog should get minor irritation, wash the eyes out with a mild saline solution similar to tears. You can also make your own by adding a level 1/4 teaspoon of sea salt to one cup of pure water and stir.
- Always keep the solution at room temperature. Pour a small amount into a cup or dish. Using a cotton ball rub the cotton over and into the eye. You can also use an eye dropper taking care not to poke the eye. Use this until the irritant comes out of your pets eye.
If your pet got a serious corneal injury, they keep their eye shut most of the time. Here you’ll want to get veterinary help.
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Respect motel and campground properties.
- Most hotels allow pets as long as your pet is well behaved.
- Never leave a dog alone in the hotel room while you go out for long periods of time. Doing so can lead to barking and chewing!
- Keep your pet on a leash at all times.
- Clean up any pet messes before the housekeeper enters the room.
- When walking your dogs, don’t allow them to run through the flower beds. Instead, find a grassy area or go for a walk until they relieve themselves. Always clean up after your pet on hotel grounds.
- These guidelines help make you welcome with your pet when visiting at people’s homes, too.
Have fun and enjoy your travels with your favorite furrbaby.