Summer vacations are coming up shortly and most families contain two-legged and four-legged members. When it comes to vacation time the biggest question of all may very well be what to do with the little furry ones? Loyally, they stand by you all year long through thick and thin, so, what are you going to do with them now that it is get away time? If your travel plans are short term leaving them with a trusted friend, or, at a kennel, may be okay, or, you can decide to pamper your little critters at a Doggie Daycare Center while you are away. Kind of like a little vacation all their very own. However, if you will be on an extended stay for several months, they will probably be happier with you in a more stable, less stressful, comfortable, environment, although there are certain additional measures that have to be taken to successfully make that happen for both of you, such as can they make the trip? Your Veterinarian can help answer that question for you, provide your pet a check-up, prescribe any necessary medications or shots, and, can provide all the necessary health records and certificates needed for traveling by airplane or going overseas to another Country.
Should you choose to fly, it is highly recommended you book a non-peak time flight with less passengers, more cabin room, and, less stress. Label your pet carriers and travel identification tags with all of the details of your final destination. A little known tip is that certain times of the year you may not be able to fly with your pet unless it is small enough to travel inside the cabin with you. Check with your airlines about these times, because, it may be too cool in the Winter months, and, too hot in the Summer months, for pets to fly otherwise. Most airlines now have trained Staff to help facilitate necessary arrangements for pets traveling. The International Air Transportation Association, and, the American Veterinary Medical Association may also be able to offer pointers on their websites for pets who are traveling.
Owners need to prepare pets for long car trips, too. Don’t just throw Fido on the back seat and cruise on down the road to wherever the wind decides to blow you. For instance, to help a pet that gets anxious on short car trips around town try putting a crate with some of his most favorite play toys in it inside your house. Once your pet is comfortable with that, move the crate inside your car, and, let them get in with it. After that, short trips around the local area will help acclimate your pet to traveling conditions. For pets it is all about association and time spent with their favorite objects. Once at your arrival destination the same tip still applies to get your pet accustomed to the strange new surroundings they are now in. Just like you have to do with children bring things the Fluffies are used to.
For lengthy, extended stays of several months in a new area, obtain the services of a local Veterinarian and provide them the animal’s health records, or, at the very least, your home Veterinarian’s contact information, so the two Veterinarians can communicate if need be. Remember, stress can lower immunity systems, so, watch your pet’s snacking habits, check for any local toxic plants that may grow in the area, and, allow adjustment time for your pet. Do not abandon them right away once you first get to your destination. Sounds stupid, but, give them a tour of the confines. A little bit goes a long way helping pets adjust to temporary situations. Since animals want to be around their people, spend some time with your pet by just being around it like it is used to.
A few carefully, prior planned, decisions on your part will allow the four-legged members of your clan to go on vacations with you. Pets are part of the Family take them, too. Bon Voyage!