Summer is almost upon us, and that means there are more weekend trips in the near future! With Memorial Day Weekend only a week away, marking the unofficial start of summer, we thought it would be a great idea to go over some of our favorite pet travel safety tips. Between planning, packing, and actually getting to your destination, it’s easy to forget about all of the things your pets need on a vacation to stay safe. It would be so much easier if they could pack for themselves, but as far as we know, that isn’t something dogs know how to do just yet (though we wouldn’t put it past them)!
Here are a few ways to travel safely with your pets:
Make a Pet Travel Bag
Much like yourself, your dog should have his/her own bag of essentials while you are away on your trip. Make sure you have enough food, bowls, water bottles (like this dog travel water bottle), all medication, an extra towel, poop bags, a first-aid kit, some treats, toys, and an extra leash. Just a small bag is all your dog needs to have a perfect vacation alongside you!
Bring Their Papers
It’s important to bring your pets’ papers whenever you are traveling away from home, especially when crossing state lines. Having an updated health certificate and additional documents included in your travel bag can never hurt. Your vet can provide all of this information to you.
Pack the Correct Wearables
Even if your dog is microchipped, make sure that you have a separate collar with an identification tag in case your pup gets loose. We always recommend that your dog has an additional collar or harness with an ID tag attached to the leash in the event he/she slips out of one. Although it may seem excessive, we know that things can happen, especially when your dog is somewhere unfamiliar.
Keep Your Pet Secure
It’s important to make sure your pup is secure in the car while you are driving - for both of your safety! A crate is an easy way to do this, but you can also use a dog harness with a seat belt clip or a hammock seat cover to give your pet a little more freedom. You can also use a pet barrier to keep your dog from jumping around to different sections in the car. While we love having our travel buddies sitting next to (or on top of) us, it’s more important to keep them safe and focus on the road.
Adjust Their Feeding Schedule
Before leaving for your trip, make sure to adjust your dog’s eating schedule. Especially for long trips, don’t put them in the car right after breakfast on a full stomach and bladder. Instead, feed them smaller meals throughout the trip. This will act as a reward at rest stops and also ensure there are no accidents or upset stomachs while you are driving. Once you get settled at your destination, you can resume their normal schedule.
Never Leave Them in the Car Alone
Although this may be common sense, it is always worth mentioning: never leave your dog in the car alone. It’s getting warmer out and it’s incredibly dangerous for them to be stuck in a car. Make sure to plan out your trip so you can bring your pup with you everywhere, or bring another human buddy along so you can take turns walking your dog on breaks. A trip can be stressful enough for your dog, and leaving them locked alone can only lead to more stress and potential serious issues.
Traveling with your dogs is fun, but it’s important to keep them safe at the same time. A few small additions to your trip will do just that!