With the holidays upon us, more and more people are now traveling with their pets rather than leaving them behind. Our pets are like family, so it makes sense that we’d want them to be with us for the holidays. But traveling with cats and dogs can be tricky, so heed these 5 tips for traveling with pets tips to keep your dog or cat safe both to and from – as well as at – your holiday destination.
- Make sure you have the right gear for the road – or flight. Different states have different laws for traveling with pets in the vehicle, such as requiring dogs to be in a restraint, and cats to be in a carrier. USA Today reported about traveling with your pets in the car, and you can read some more information on their article about state laws about driving with pets. If you’re flying, check with the individual airline to determine their requirements, as each airline has different rules.
- Pack food, and water. This may sound like a no-brainer, but even on long car trips, making sure your pet is comfortable is important. Offer water every few hours, and depending on if your dog or cat is prone to an upset tummy from motion sickness or stress, you may want to withhold food until after the journey. However, once you get there, be sure to offer your pet their regular food – traveling is not the time to change foods!
- Know the requirements for where you are going. Whether you are traveling domestically and crossing state lines, or internationally, different regulations may apply. Current proof of rabies vaccination is just the start – so be sure to know what you need before you hit the road or take to the air. You can check out this blog by VitalChek about international travel with animals for some great information.
- Check your equipment before you go. Make sure you have the right leashes, harnesses, ID tags and collars for whichever pets you are traveling with. If your cat wears a harness and you plan on letting them get some exercise at a rest stop, be sure to put it on before you open any doors or windows. Same goes with securely leashing and harnessing up your dog – even dogs can easily slip out of their collar and all of the commotion at roadway stops can be terrifying!
- Talk to your vet. Whether it’s questions about what’s needed to travel (do you need a health certificate, proof of rabies, or boosters on vaccinations before you go?), or to make sure your pet is microchipped and registered, or even getting a good grooming before they go, your vet is there to help. A quick visit before you travel can save a lot of trouble down the line.
Are you planning on traveling with your pet this holiday season? Share your tips for traveling with pets below, and of course, Happy Holidays!