So you have decided to go on a trip cross-country with a dog (your dog preferably, dognappers need not continue reading). We don't blame you, dogs make an exceptional companion, especially during an adventurous trip.
When planning your excursion, whether by air or driving, there a few essentials you want to keep in mind.
You want to be sure that your pet is healthy enough to travel. Most, if not all, airlines and trains will require documentation of this. Be sure to ask your veterinarian about possible risks such as fleas, ticks, and heartworm. If your pup has anxiety issues, this would be a good time to discuss medicinal options. Plan accordingly. Also, update your dogs' vaccinations if needed.
If you haven't already done so, this is a great time to consider micro-chipping Fido. Just in case you and your buddy get separated during your trip. A pet I.D tag is also recommended as a form of backup.
Bring copies of all important documents (vaccine, medical records, etc.)
Dependent upon the mode of transportation, here are guidelines to follow when taking a cross-country road trip with your dog. Remember to always research before embarking (see what I did there?) on your trip.
There is nothing better than enjoying a road trip with your dog; cruising down a country highway, wind in your hair and your furry, four-legged friend by your side. Traveling with Fido is so much better than missing him the entire trip. Plus, what dog doesn't love a road trip? We get it, but before you rev up those engines, here are a few tips (in addition to those mentioned above) to ensure a safe and happy adventure for all.
- Research and plan your trip. Plan your route noting places of importance, pet-friendly hotels, and restaurants, dog parks, activities, and emergency vets just in case.
- Pack well for your fur baby. Be sure to bring:
- padded dog collar
- food/water bowls
- any medication
- vitamins and/or supplements
- paper towels
- cleaning supplies (for those muddy paws, and possible accidents)
- a comfy towel or blanket
- waste bags
- pet insect repellent/doggy sunscreen
- If you plan on going hiking, camping, or lots of walking/running, be sure to pack the necessary tools. A hands-free option running dog leash is extremely useful for active owners and their dogs.
- Equip your vehicle with a pet harness in the back seat (it is not safe for dogs to be harnessed in the front seat) or use a carrier and buckle it in with the seat belt.
- Bring a first aid kit!
- Stop frequently for bathroom breaks and exercise.
- Never leave your dog unattended in your car. Although you may think you are “just running in”, anything could happen. If it is 85 degrees outside, the temperature in the car can rise to 102 degrees in just 10 minutes with the windows cracked.
Taking a trip with your furry best friend can be the ultimate adventure. Our pets are a member of the family, and we love them. They rely on us to take care of them and keep them safe. Abide by this guide to enjoy a fantasti