Holidaying with your pet

It happens every summer just before the holidays… “What shall we do about our pets?” When deciding on a holiday destination – should you take him or leave him? As a member of the family, your pet is entitled to share the fun of travelling. On the other hand, some pets can take all the pleasure out of a trip. Think before you decide. A week or two in a clean, well-run boarding kennel or at home with an animal loving house-sitter might be your dog’s idea of a perfect vacation! A dog should be thoroughly familiar with riding in a car before you consider taking him on a long trip. After a few rides around town most dogs overcome their motion sickness and begin to enjoy riding with the family. If you pet does not travel well and continues to get sick or restless, consider a boarding kennel or pet sitter. Don’t take a sick or unhappy dog on a trip. Both you and your pets will be miserable. But suppose you decide to take him along. Keep in mind these important tips when travelling with your dog: •  Be sure to make your hotel reservations well in advance, advising that you will have a dog with you. This could save much time and aggravation. ALWAYS check ahead to ensure the facilities are animal friendly. •  Take along your pet’s own bowl. Use it for water and mixing his food. He will have an added feeling of security using his regular bowl. Try not to feed your pet for six or more hours prior to traveling. Most dogs travel better on this feeding schedule. Also take along a square of old blanket or his sleeping pad. This is your dog’s travel bed in the car and motel. After you’ve shown him a few times, he’ll understand. •   Ensure that your dog is identity chipped before you leave and invest in a good collar with tag that contains your contact details. •  A can of flea powder is a must. Your pet may start out without a single flea, but he could pick some up along the way. You don’t want fleas in your car, and the hotel or motel doesn’t want them either. •  Some dogs insist on hanging their heads out the window. Don’t permit this, as bits of grit may be driven into the eyes. In any case, the dog may get nasal and eye passage inflammation just from the wind. Keep him in his place and close the windows part way to discourage him. •  If you will be traveling across borderscheck ahead to determine whether a health certificates or proof of rabies vaccination is required. Wherever you go, remember that you are responsible for your dog’s conduct. The impression you make on hotel and motel managers will determine their attitude toward all dogs and dog owners. By planning ahead and observing the rules of courtesy, you can take your dog with you anywhere. If your pet enjoys car travel, you and your family can a expect a most enjoyable trip.

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