Vacationing with your dog
For most of us dog owners, taking a vacation just wouldn’t be nearly as much fun if we couldn’t’ share it with our beloved dogs. While the idea of taking our dog on vacation can be great and fun, it can also pose some challenges. Some vacations are harder to take with your dog than others. For example, only few cruise ships allow dogs on board, there will also be a number of restrictions regarding animals if you’re planning on visiting a national park. Not every dog will enjoy a visit to a crowded tourist destination and not every relative will appreciate having us show up on their front door with our dog in tow.
Camping and other outdoor activities are natural vacation options with our beloved dogs, but there are some dogs that just aren’t cut out for the rugged camping adventures. Also some dogs become over-excited or anxious when travelling, which can then lead to things like barking, marking or other destructive behaviors.
It all starts with realistic expectations and being prepared to have a fun-filled and happy vacation that includes your dog and a dog who loves to vacation with you!
Whether your dog is small enough to fit in a carrier or not, here are a few essential items every pet owner should bring when vacationing with a dog.
Collapsible dog bowls, Bottled Water and Dog Food (don’t switch brands)
Make sure your dog don’t get hungry or dehydrated during the trip. Take enough breaks to let your dog stretch their legs, go potty, eat some food or treats and drink water.
Favorite dog treats
Bring their favorite dog treats. Healthy and natural dog treats is one of the best thing you can bring along with on your trip with your dog. Not only your dog will love it, but it also helps your dog stay mentally active and it also helps your dog relieve boredom and anxiety.
Favorite toy, blanket and crate
Always bring along some items which are familiar to your dog. Bring along his favorite toy and or blanket for him to snuggle with. Setting up a cozy sleeping kennel can really help your dog feel the comforts of home and understand that he belongs where you are.
Dog towels, brush and leash
If your dog will have the opportunity to get wet or covered with burrs and ticks, make sure to bring plenty of dog towels and a good brush. You can also bring tick remover, shampoo if he will be spending more time outdoors. Depending on what kind of activities you have planned for your dog, it is also ideal to bring your dog leash.
Dog poop bags
Be extra mindful especially when travelling. It is important to do your part and keep the vacation spot a clean place for everyone to enjoy their holiday. Always pick up after your dog.
Dog’s first-aid kit
A first-aid kit is very important not only in the event of a natural disaster, but also when a pet is far away from immediate help. When you are planning a vacation with your pet, make sure to check your first aid kit before travelling. It is also important to check expiration dates of the items and buy any replacements necessary.
Health certificate and copy of vaccination records
Proof of rabies or other vaccines may also be required in some parks or camp areas. You may need to show your dog’s health certificate or proof of vaccines if you are crossing states or national borders so make sure you have all the paperwork ready.
Your dog’s identification (Dog tags, microchip)
Make sure your dog wears a well-fitting collar with ID tags or nameplate, and make sure it has a contact number that can be reached on your travels. A microchip is also a very good idea for all dogs and especially when you take your dog on a trip. Many shelters and veterinary clinics have scanners and will check for a microchip should your dog become lost.
Contact number and address of the nearest veterinarian clinic
Accidents can happen all the time, so make sure you look up the closest emergency veterinary hospital to the hotels you’ll be staying at along the way.
If you are staying in a hotel, make sure that you never leave your dog in the room unattended. Also be very mindful of people and dogs you encounter in the hallways and elevator. As hard as it is to believe, not everyone wants to say hi to our pets, they have their own personal reason that we may never know but we should respect them too. Remember to always abide by hotel, parks and state laws. And most importantly, don’t forget to take lots of fun pictures with your dog!