Dog Travel Planning

Dog travel planning. As a dog owner there is always extra planning involved when you're planning a trip. Should your dog travel with you? Should he be left behind?

Consider your dogs personality and the length and distance of your trip in making this decision.

Leaving Your Dog Home

If your decision is to leave him behind, you have the option of boarding or hiring a sitter. Either way here are some general tips:

  • Ask your vet, groomer or other pet owners for recommendations. Many vets and groomers have their own boarding kennels.

  • If you're hiring a pet sitter, meet them in your home and see how they interact with your pet.
  • Many facilities fill up fast, especially if its a holiday, so make reservations in advance.
  • Besure your dog is current on all vaccinations and ask if additional shots are required.
  • If they are on medication, be sure to leave a good supply and clear and complete instructions.
  • Leave feeding instructions and a supply of your dog's regular food. If leaving with a sitter, discuss exercise routine.
  • Be sure he is wearing a collar with ID tags.
  • Leave your vet information including office hours and emergency numbers.
  • Be sure to leave a number where you can be reached.

Taking Your Dog With You

  • Call ahead and make sure your dog will be welcome at hotels, motels, homes or parks where you will be staying.

    Read more about Pet Friendly Hotels - This site contains all information about Pet Friendly Hotels that you love to experience.

  • Take along medical records and be sure they're up to date on vaccinations.
  • Take your dogs regular food, special medications, a supply of water and if there's room take his bedding and favorite toys.
  • Don't feed him for at least 3 hours before starting a trip.
  • Walk him just before he leaves.
  • If traveling by car, stop frequently and give him water and a walk.
  • When traveling in a vehicle its always safest for you and your dog that they be confined in a carrier, never let him ride with his head out the window or in the back of a truck. NEVER leave them confined in a closed car in hot weather - even for a few minutes
  • Be sure he has a collar on with ID tag containing your name and telephone (including area code). A photo of him could be very helpful if he get lost. Never leave him loose in a hotel room when you're not there, keep him confined in a crate and check on him frequently. When you take him out always have him on leash.

Dog Travel by Air

Sometimes airlines will allow pets to travel in cargo sections for a nominal fee. If your dog must travel in the cargo section its probably best to avoid flying when the weather is extremely hot or very cold.

Some airlines allow a very small pet to travel under seats in the passenger cabin. Check with your airline for their rules and restrictions.

Plan ahead to be sure your carrier is approved by the airline. These can be purchased at most pet stores.

Follow all airline rules, make sure the carrier is clearly marked and indicates there is a live animal inside.

Pet airline travel can be stressful. Book direct flights and avoid holiday bookings

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