As you travel with your loved ones for the holiday, for many of you, this may require you bring your pets. When it comes to traveling with you dog, there are many things that you need to do and bring with you when you travel. Here is our list to best prepare you for when you travel with your dog for the holiday season.
Get Lots of Exercise
When traveling with your dog, both before you leave and during the drive, make sure and allow your dog to get lots of exercise. Your dog might be in a crate or dog carrier for a while, so make sure to burn off all your dog’s excess energy before the long drive.
When you stop at rest areas to let your dog use the restroom, allow 15 extra minutes to let Spot run around.
Food for Thought
Something that most people don’t think about is that a lot of dogs get car sick. This means that overfeeding your dog before hitting the road is a REALLY bad idea. This will just make clean up a disaster afterwards and a bad experience for him.
While you don’t want to overfeed your dog, you do want to make sure and ensure that your dog has access to plenty of water. Hydration is key.
Prepare Your Dog for the Ride
If your dog hasn’t traveled in your car much before, you need to get your dog accustomed to traveling in your car. Start with letting your dog spend some time in your car as it is stationary. Then take short trips around the block with your dog.
If you choose to travel with your dog in a crate and it hasn’t spent any time in it before, make sure and acclimate him to it as well. You don’t need the first time he is in it to think that it is a prison. Here is a great explanation of how to properly crate a dog for travel.
Keep your energy positive. Don’t present the crate like it’s a prison. Show the dog the crate and open the door. Don’t shove the dog in the crate. Let him go into the crate on his own. When he’s inside and comfortable, you can close the door. Walk away with good energy and body language. If you affect a sad voice and say things like “Don’t be sad. Mommy and Daddy will be back soon,” your dog is going to think something’s wrong and get anxious.
Come back in 15 minutes. This will ease the dog’s separation anxiety next time you crate him. But don’t take him out of the crate. Remember that you’re not projecting that the crate is a bad thing. Just open the door and he can come out when he’s ready.
Take Your Dog Fence with You
If you are traveling to a friend or family’s house with a yard, where your dog can run free, you should take your electric dog fence with you. While Fido usually finds his way home when he sneaks out from your home, when you are 800 miles away, he isn’t likely to find his way back. While we all loved the movie Homeward Bound: The Incredible Journey, you’ll be sad if your dog runs away while on vacation.
Protect your loved ones–including your pets–and follow these tips when you travel from home this holiday season.