7 Travel Tips for Pet Trips!

Try saying that seven times in a row…

As the end-of-the-year holidays quickly approach, so does the season for travel! Although Canine Companion LA is in the business of pet sitting (especially around these busy times), over the years, we’ve found that many of our clients often take their pets along with them for trips, and not only during the holidays, but all throughout the year!

In fact, we aren’t immune to traveling with our own pets ourselves! Our walkers have taken backpacking, camping, and beach trips with their dogs. Before the birth of Canine Companion LA, our beloved owner Linda travelled across country with her dog Moto by car over 2,600 miles!! With our pet-traveling expertise in hand (or paw), here’s a several tips to get you and your pet on your ways to a day, weekend, or even a week-long trip together:

Picture courtesy of AnimalPlanet.com

Picture courtesy of AnimalPlanet.com

The Basics:

  • Check in with your Vet: First and foremost, it’s important to make sure your pet is updated on vaccinations and in good health to travel. If traveling outside of the state or even the country, make sure to check the requirements of what’s needed for your pets! And don’t forget to bring a copy of your vaccination and vet records. You’ll want to make sure you’re fully prepared if anything were to happen away from home.
  • Proper Identification: Make sure to update your pets contact information on their collars and tags. If traveling by plane, list your name, phone number, address, destination address and phone number, and photo of your pet on their crate. Also be sure to always carry a photo of your pet when traveling! In the case that your pet gets out, this could prove to be a life saver!

Supplies:

  • Pet Personals: Bring food, water, portable bowls, leash/ collars, medication, and a first aid kit. To give a sense of familiarity while away from home, be sure to also bring along a favorite toy or blanket along for the trip.
  • Crate: Whether you’re traveling by car or plane, be sure to purchase a ventilated travel crate for your pet that is large enough for them to stand, sit, lie down, and turn around in. Putting an absorbent potty pad will also help to clean up any accidents along the way.
CCLA Tip: We don't encourage heads out the windows during car rides -- you risk getting debris in your dog's eyes! Picture courtesy of GirardAtLarge.com

CCLA Tip: We don’t encourage heads out the windows during car rides — you risk getting debris in your dog’s eyes (even with doggles)! Picture courtesy of GirardAtLarge.com

The Trip:

  • Lodging: Although in our dream world it would be the case, not all hotels allow pets! Check out this PAWsome list of pet-friendly hotels along with their pet policies:
  • Car Rides: Slowly prepare your pet for longer car rides by taking shorter drives and gradually lengthening the amount of time in the car. Take stops along the way for potty breaks and play time! One of our clients recently told us a story of how he traveled by car with his cat Skeeter. Although he took him out for a potty break before the trip, right when they arrived to their destination, he noted how Skeeter immediately ran over to the litter box to relieve himself!
  • Food and Treats: Although giving your pets treats to comfort them during a trip may initially seem to make sense, too many treats can cause an upset stomach, vomiting, or diarrhea! Keep the treats at a minimum to avoid any possible accidents. This also goes for feedings before the trip. One of our walkers learned the hard way about feeding her dog before even a short car ride; remember that pets get motion sickness just like we do!

As a final note, we’d like to note that not all pets are suited for traveling! Physical impairments, illnesses, and temperament of your pet should be considered before traveling. If you’re unsure, be sure to check in with your vet before you travel. You don’t want a trip to become a stressful situation for both you and your pet!

Have you travelled anywhere with your pet? Tell us about your travel experiences below!

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