Thursday, December 20, 2012

Planning Tips for Pet Travel

Taking your furry friend on a vacation can be a great experience for both you and your pet. It allows you, as an owner quality time with your pet outside of the normal home environment and helps save money on expensive pet boarding, which itself can cause stress for your pet. Pet Health Market has put together a list of pet travelling tips to make for an easier and less stressful adventure with your pet!

DO: Pack a Pet Suitcase

Your companion’s packing list may not be as long as your own but if you pack a pet bag the trip will go a lot smoother for all parties. First, bring your pet’s normal food and water supply. Your pet’s digestive system is accustom to their normal food and changing a diet can cause some messy consequences. When travelling, your pet might get sick drinking from unfamiliar and unsanitary water sources. Starting with a robust supply of water from home and replenishing with sanitary water over the trip will gradually introduce the new water to your pet in a safe way.

When travelling away from home, a pet’s packing list should also include the following items: familiar bedding and blankets, toys, plastic bags, grooming supplies, health records, any medications and treats. Pet Health Market carries a chewable ProQuiet Calming Supplement that helps maintain a healthy nervous system and attitude in dogs and cats. The flavored tablets are perfect for anxious and stressed travelling pets and can be taken before or during travel. You wouldn’t go on vacation without a bag, so don’t forget your pet’s luggage, either!

DO: Buckle Up

Now… we don’t mean that your dog or cat should be using the human seatbelts but all pets should be properly secured. To keep pet and human passengers safe while in motion, all pets should be secured in a well-ventilated crate or carrier. These will keep the animals in one safe place and limit distractions to a human driver. All pet carriers should be large enough for the pet to sit, stand and comfortably turn around. If using a crate or pet carrier you should familiarize your pet with the enclosure before the trip, perhaps even making shorter drives to build your pet’s confidence in the carrier.

DO: Have Up to Date Pet ID and Vaccinations

Having your pet equipped with accurate identification tags should always be a priority. This is even more important when travelling away from home where you and your pet are unfamiliar with the surroundings. Make sure your pet wears a collar with an imprinted tag containing a home address but also a travel tag including cell phone numbers and other relevant destination information.

Before travelling, make sure your pet is up to date with all shots and vaccinations. Aside from the legal requirement of regular rabies shots, some vacation destinations may require additional vaccinations for safe pet travel. Pet Health Market’s inventory of pet vaccines are great choices for pet owners not squeamish around needles. A visit to your local vet can also save you time and frustration of dealing with an unfamiliar veterinarian should a medical issue arise when on the road.

If you are making a cross country trip with your best buddy or just spending a weekend at the in-laws, we hope the pet vacationing tips will make for a more enjoyable and less stressed adventure for you and your pet!