When it comes to planning a trip, there are many factors to consider—accounting for the comfort and safety of your pet while traveling is an added challenge.
Here are some essential tips for making sure your pet stays calm and comfortable while you travel.
Get an ESA Evaluation Letter
The sense of companionship that animals give us is invaluable. It’s no secret that many people turn to animals for help managing symptoms of a mental health condition like anxiety and depression.
If you have an emotional disorder, a therapist might encourage you to get an emotional support animal. An ESA letter stating that your pet is vital to your course of treatment will help you avoid regulations that might otherwise prevent you from bringing an animal on your trip.
ESA letters are useful against airline regulations, federal laws, and housing policies.
Buy a Comfortable Crate or Carrier
If you plan on buying a shipping crate for your pet, make sure you choose one that is IATA (International Air Transport Association) approved.
The crate or carrier that you purchase should be large enough for your pet to stand, sit, and turn around easily. It should not slip or move around as the car or plane moves.
Bring Proper Identification
Prepare for travel by making sure you have packed all the correct identification paperwork for your pet:
- Buy an ID tag for your pet’s collar with your address and phone number.
- Purchase a temporary tag that lists where you are staying during your trip and a phone number that you can be reached at.
- If you are a frequent traveler, consider having your pet microchipped. It’s a safe and permanent form of identification that is extremely helpful if your pet gets lost.
- You should also take pictures of your pet’s medical history documents and keep them on your tablet or phone. The images will come in handy if there’s a medical emergency.
Practice Before the Trip
If your pet isn’t used to traveling or being away from home, it’s best to ease into being on-the-go. Don’t expect your pet to feel comfortable traveling long distances if they’ve spent very little time away from home.
If you plan on going on a road trip, take them on car rides for a few days or weeks leading up to the trip.
Pack a Doggy Care Package
Whether you are traveling close to home or somewhere far away, you must pack a separate bag for your pet.
Bring extra food, their favorite toys, and a blanket that makes them feel safe. Also, bring a collapsible water bowl so they can hydrate on-the-go.
Make sure you check the weather of your destination before departing. If you are traveling somewhere hot, furry dogs need a cooling vest because they have a hard time regulating body temperature.
If you are taking a road trip, you should stop frequently. Take a break from driving every two to three hours so you can take your pet for a walk.
During this time, let them exercise, use the bathroom, and eat if they haven’t yet. Keep a gallon of cold water on hand, so your pet stays hydrated while you travel.
Traveling with a pet can be challenging if you haven’t prepared properly. Your furry friend can be a great travel companion, but you must think about their needs before you embark on any journey.
We hope you found these tips helpful, and we encourage you to check out some of our other travel advice for your next vacation!