When we adopt a dog, we imagine ourselves doing every little thing with them. Walking and feeding them, cuddling and playing with them. However, it’s often hard to think of traveling with a dog. Sometimes, the possibility isn’t there, but some other times, taking your dog on vacation with you seems like the perfect plan.
First of all, before making this decision, you should consider:
- Dog’s health condition: It is very important to assess your dog’s health before any decision-making. Consult with your vet and if needed, he/she will run some tests to make sure your dog can travel.
Your dog’s size: Particularly if you are traveling abroad, you need to consider your pet size and weight. Depending on the airline you choose, there are different restrictions regarding dogs and they’ll need to meet the established criteria to travel in the cabin with you.
- The place you are going to: Determine if the place you are going to is pet-friendly. If it is, go beyond that and think if there are any activities to do with your dog and if he is going to enjoy himself there. Otherwise, even if you don’t want to spend any time apart from your BFF, it may not be a good idea to take him with you.
I’m traveling with a dog
If you have already assessed your dog’s health condition, age, size, and you know that place you are going to is dog friendly, then it’s time to plan your next vacation!
To make the most out of this experience, prepare a list of all the things needed:
Leash: When traveling, your dog will certainly need a leash. Even if he is not used to walking on a leash, the scenario will be different change. It is very important to take the leash with you because you may need it.
ID tags: This is a MUST even if you are at home. Unexpected turn of events can happen all the time, identification tags are cheap and don’t represent a nuisance to your dog. Furthermore, if you are going on vacation, it’s super important to add it to your dog’s collar. Your neighbors don’t know your dog and your dog is not familiar with the neighborhood so he can get lost easily.
When traveling with a dog, don't forget...
Waste bags: Make sure you carry these everywhere you go. As a dog parent, you may be used to having your dog poop in your backyard. But remember that it’s basic etiquette to pick up after your dog everywhere you go. Plus, there’s nothing more embarrassing than having your dog poop in the middle of the crowd and not having waste bags to pick up. Try our compostable and biodegradable bags!
Cleansing wipes: They are one of the best pet grooming supplies. They are useful if you need to clean your dog up, if he throws up, or if his paws are covered in mud. Cleansing wipes will be a life-saver if you are traveling with a dog, especially during your vacation time.
First-aid kit: Based on your dog’s needs and health, it's important to take with you a first-aid kit in case something comes up. It doesn’t have to be very serious: small incidents can happen all the time. Particularly when you change your dog’s daily scenario. So, just like you carry band-aids and headache pills with you, you need to prepare a kit for your pet, or at the very least know where the closest vet is.
Food: This may be obvious or even redundant, but it’s important to take enough food for your dog. Why is that? Because depending on whether you are traveling abroad or not, the dog food available can be very different. As a consequence, your dog’s stomach can get upset. And trust me, that is the last thing you need when you are on vacation. Besides, the stress of traveling can make your dog feel sick already. So, if possible, always take enough food to make sure your dog will be fine.
Remember that preparation is key if you are traveling with a dog. Some additional resources that may help you plan ahead are BringFido, which allows you to find pet-friendly hotels, restaurants, and activities anywhere you go, and APHIS Pet Travel, which will provide you with the requirements that you need to take your dog from the United States to any other country.