Traveling with pets, without proper planning and preparation can be a night-mare for both of you. Depending upon your destination, the preparations are similar: have your pet examined to ensure it is healthy enough for travel, obtain the proper paperwork, pack for your pet’s needs, train your pet for traveling and if needed, have your pet groomed. By following these 7 tips, you and your pet can have a safe and enjoyable trip.
1) Have your pet examined by your vet; verify it’s healthy enough for travel, that their vaccinations are up to date and obtain a Health Certificate and a Rabies certificate. Vaccinations vary from country to country so let your vet know if you’re traveling out of the country. You should also research the destination country as to other requirements for traveling with pets there.
2) Paperwork required for traveling with pets is usually the same whether traveling by air, rail, ship or road: health & rabies certificate, vaccination history and sometimes; proof of ownership.
3) Pack some of your pets’ favorite toys, bowls, blankets, food, leash and water. Make sure your pet has a collar (check it for wear and fit) with ID and rabies tags on it. Don’t wait until you’re ready to get in the car to teach your cat to wear a collar.
4) Pack cleaned out milk jugs of water so a change in water doesn’t ad-versely affect them. Don’t feed your pet a full meal just before leaving; a small meal a few hours before the trip is better for them.
5) Start training your pet to travel about a month before your trip. Obtain a traveling cage or crate; let them smell it, go in and out of it on their own for while, then start shutting them in it for longer and longer periods of time. A word of advice; only let them out when they are calm and ac-cepting of the cage. If you let them out while they are agitated, you’re only teaching them to misbehave in it. You cannot expect your pet that has never left the comfort of its home to understand that the noisy, smelly box (car) you just stuck them in, is safe.
6) When traveling with pets, call ahead to ensure your destination allows pets, more and more hotels/motels are accommodating pets. Research where you’ll stop every 2 or 3 hours to rest, exercise and water your pet.
7) Traveling with your pet requires some extra forethought, planning and packing, but the reward is a safe, healthy and enjoyable trip for both you and your pet. Have a great time!