Traveling with Your Pet

Have you ever considered traveling with your pet? They are part of your family and if you are planning on an extended vacation, there is no reason why you can’t take them with you. Just remember you have to do some adequate planning. Yes, pet travel can make things complicated. But considering the amount of joy they bring us, it might be fun for a chance to have them along.

Preparing your pet for travel

If you are traveling out of your home country, research the pet travel requirements for your destination ahead of time. Some places require that your pet be put into quarantine for a set period before being let into the country to ensure they do bring some disease with them.

Others may require vaccinations or parasite testing months before your arrival. Don’t wait until the last moment to find out what you need to do to bring your furry friend. 

Get your pet ready for pet travel by purchasing the carrier you will be using during the journey and getting them used to it. Your pet needs to get used to the small of the airline and the shape of it. Let them wander in and out of it as soon as you buy it.

Toss some treats in it to encourage them to get inside. Let them take a nap in it. The more comfortable they feel in their travel carrier, the better it will be for them when you embark on your trip.

Traveling with your pet on an airplane

When you travel with your pet on an airplane, you will be required to remove them from the carrier so it can be screened by the (Transportation Screening Administration (TSA). They have special screening rules for pets that you can find on their website. Most of the time you can carry your pets through the screening process, but if you fear there will be a problem, you can ask the TSA to screen them in a private room.

Every airline has different rules for bringing a pet onboard. You should always try to have your pet flown in the cabin with you, but if they are too big, they may be required to travel in the cargo area if the airline allows it. Your pet’s carrier will need to fit in under the seat in front of you and they should have enough room to stand up and move around. Be aware that there is an extra fee to fly your pet with you.

No matter where you pet flies, make sure their carrier is correctly marked with a “live animal” sticker on all sides as well as a luggage tag with all your personal and pet information. Try not to feed your pet on the day of travel. Water is okay. If you need to, talk to your vet about traveling with your pet on an airplane and see what they recommend to get your pet ready.

Traveling with your pet on car

Flying isn’t the only way to travel when going on vacation. Road trips are just as much fun. To see how your pet will handle riding in a car, start preparing them with short rides. You will be able to gauge how well your pet can handle riding in a vehicle and if they even like it. If they do, then you know a vacation road trip with your furry friend is possible.

Keep things like your pet’s bedding, favorite toys, and other items from home with your pet in the vehicle. It will help them relax because they smell home. Also, plan on taking breaks, not just for yourself, but also for your pet. Always put their leash on them before opening the car door. If you’re traveling with a cat, make sure they have access to a litter box instead of taking them out of the vehicle. You can purchase disposable litter boxes to make this easier.

And never leave your pet alone in your vehicle no matter the weather. Car interiors get hot quickly.

Pet-friendly hotels

The last thing you need to consider when traveling with your pet is where you are going to lay your head at night. You should be able to find affordable, pet-friendly hotels at your destination with just a little research. Many places charge extra per night per animal, but some don’t and will treat your four-legged friend as well as they treat you. Make sure you follow the rules the hotel has set in place for pets.

Final thoughts about pet travel

If you have any reservations about traveling with your pet on vacation, leave them at home. It is better to have a member of the family, a friend or professional pet sitter take care of them. At the same time, you are gone than taking the risk of something happening to your furry family member.

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