Summer is here, and people feel as if things are going back to normal. After a year and a half of isolation, many families are ready to travel – they’ve spent enough time together in their home and want to see something different.
We’re right there with you if you’re feeling this. But how does your pet factor into your vacation plans?
There’s a challenge, as you’ve likely been home with your pet 24/7 since early 2020. Suddenly leaving them alone would feel cruel to do. Thus, you and your family want to take them with you. But how do you safely vacation with your pet?
Whether ensuring they can come along where your family will be staying or bringing along enough healthy dog treats, you can safely bring your dog along with you this summer vacation by following these tips.
1. Check whether your dog is allowed.
First and foremost, you and your family need to determine whether your dog can come with you. Policies always change, depending on insurance policies and more, so you should be ready to check again and again until the day comes.
There are some airlines that allow dogs to fly in the cabin, as well as some hotels that are dog-friendly.
2. Cover the basics in advance.
Before you head out on vacation, make sure that your dog has their favourite custom blanket – check here. What does that look like? It involves teaching them basic commands before heading out the door. This includes “sit,” “stay,” “look at me,” and more. It’s a great way to ensure your dog listens, especially when there are distractions around.
3. Remember to bring a crate.
It’s likely that you crate trained your dog, either recently or in the past. Their crate is a simple place where they can relax and where they can decompress from various stimulants and distractions. You should take their crate along to provide them with a safe space to sleep, rest, disconnect, and travel securely.
4. Don’t bring too many toys.
While you should bring along a dog toy to give them a way to let out stress and extra energy, you shouldn’t bring too many. Similar to being in a group of loud people, too many toys can be distracting and overwhelming to a dog. Instead, keep it simple and give them one or two things to focus on.
5. Remember to keep them hydrated.
A dehydrated dog can be a bad thing: Not only is it bad for their personal health, but it can equally lead to enhanced anxiety, depression, and more. Make sure you’re aware of the warning signs of dehydration. These include increased panting, loss of appetite, lethargy, and thick saliva.
6. Bring along their personal documents.
Whether you’re traveling state borders or international borders, you should make sure to have your dog’s personal records on hand. That includes their annual physical and rabies vaccination paperwork. Some municipalities might not allow your dog past a border checkpoint if your dog is not vaccinated against rabies or another disease, as this poses the risk of passing it on to other animals.
To avoid this, make sure you bring along all of your dog’s paperwork. Furthermore, be sure to get your dog up to date on vaccinations before going anywhere.
7. Use dog apps to your advantage.
Worried about something happening while you’re out and about? Dog-focused apps can be a big help when you’re in a pinch.
Puppr – If you need to train your dog while on the go, Puppr is the ticket. The app has dozens of lessons you can teach to your dog, from things as simple as “down” to “sit.” Best of all, the app features a clicker, which can be used to confirm good behavior.
American Red Cross Pet First Aid – Worried about a sudden dog injury? The American Red Cross Pet First Aid app helps inform you, with a step-by-step guide, how to treat various injuries while out in the world.
AllTrails – Planning on a weekend outdoors? Waiting to find the place that fancies your interests while driving around? AllTrails will let you know whether a trail is dog-friendly or not. This is essential, as it will save you any trouble before driving out of your way or heading off from a trailhead.
8. Stay somewhere that’s pet friendly.
Worried whether your dog is allowed wherever you’re going? Check here to see top 5 dog-friendly beaches in Dalmatia, Croatia. It can be annoying if a restaurant or public park doesn’t allow a dog, but it’s a serious issue if a hotel, AirBnB, or inn doesn’t allow you to bring along your furry friend. BringFido is a simple way to check whether your dog is allowed wherever you plan on staying. Double check with BringFido to see whether you need to replan, even if last minute.
If you find a pet-friendly restaurant, bring along something that will satiate their appetite. That can include bully sticks, biscuits, and collagen chews.
9. Don’t leave your pet alone.
Most importantly, don’t take your dog along just to leave them in the hotel all day. You wouldn’t do it with your child, so you shouldn’t do it with your pet.
10. Involve your pet, but know when it’s best to leave them at home.
If you think you’re going to have to regularly leave your dog behind, then leave them at home. It’s better to leave them with a family friend or at a kennel than not involving them at all.
Whatever you decide to do, make a decision that is best for both your family and your dog. If you think your dog won’t be welcome most places you go, plan to let them hang out at home, providing them with a dog sitter to keep them attentive, happy, and healthy. Otherwise, bring them along and make sure to incorporate them as you would any other family member.
Passionate Writer, Blogger and Amazon Affiliate Expert since 2014.