Posted on August 27 2015
When traveling with your pet, packing some basic supplies and careful preparations are the key to making a happy and safe trip, to both you and your pet.
Here are some of the things you need to pack and prepare before going out on a trip with your dog:
Don't forget to bring your pet's food, water, bedding, food bowl, leash, dog collar, tags, grooming supplies and first aid kits with the necessary drinking water.
Here are other essentials to pack for your dog:
- Toys to kill boredom.
- Poop bags
- Zip-loc bags
- Grooming supplies
- A local guide book.
- Paper towels
- Extra leash and harness
- Raincoat or rain poncho(depending on the weather)
- Pet seat cover
Don't always assume that you can buy these supplies at your destination. Changing dog food brands as an alternative or having them drink tap water from an unknown location for example could leave their stomachs upset, so if you don't want to have a messy ride have these supplies ready before you leave home.
Carriers and Dog Harness/Collar
For the safety of you and your pet always have a pet carrier, harness and/or collar with you when traveling by car. Even if your dog is used to traveling on the seat of your car, having them kept in the carrier or restrained in a harness is a lot safer.
Your pet's carrier should be durable, with opaque sides, and has ample ventilation on each of the four sides. Select a carrier that has secure door and door latch.
Dog harnesses on the other hand keep your dog from roaming around the car. However, harnesses won't be able to protect your pet in case of a car crash.
You can't always bring a bag full of dog supplies with you, so this is when carry-ons are very useful. Carry-ons have the necessary items you need during pit stops, when strolling around town, and where you just can't bring your pack-full of supplies with you.
Here are some essentials in a carry-on:
- A collapsible water bowl or this
- Water bottle
- Health certificate and a current copy of your pet's shot vaccination record.
- Prescription medications (if any)
- A meal's worth of food.
- Poop bags
- leash and harness
- A picture of your dog for identification
Ensure that your dog has a collar with ID tags throughout the trip. The tags should contain your permanent address and the phone numbers where you or a contact can be reached during your travels.
Best that you carry a photograph of your pet with you at all times. If your pet gets lost on the trip, it will make it easier for others to help you find your dog.
Preparing Your Dog
It is best if you get your pet accustomed to traveling before planning for a trip. Since he/she will be in a carrier on most of the trip, help your pet to be acclimated to a pet carrier.
The idea is to make them feel comfortable in the carrier as if it were their second home. Do this one baby step at a time and this means that you'll have to teach them how to behave when they see a crate, how to get inside the crate, and how to be comfortable in it. Remember that it is a long and tedious process and rushing it will do more harm than good.
If properly introduced, most dogs can quickly adjust to it and even enjoy the trip whether in a car or a plane.