Summer is in full swing and vacationers everywhere are "gettin' outta Dodge". For many a vacationer, Fido & Fluffy will be coming with. Here are a few tips to help make the vacation enjoyable for you and your doggy.
Flickr photo credit: Katie@!
- First and foremost, make sure you take your pooch for a check up, make sure he/she is up on all vaccinations and that the doc gives the green light to travel. If your pet is on medication, make sure you have enough to last the duration of your trip.
- Make sure your dog is tagged, and/or micro-chipped. It's also a good idea to bring along copies of vaccination & health records, especially if you'll be traveling between countries.
- If you'll be booking accommodations, make sure to book at a "pet friendly" hotel, motel or B&B, and that you have a good handle on their pet policies. Arriving after a long road trip and finding unpleasant surprises, well that just wouldn't be very pleasant.
- If your dog isn't used to traveling in a car, it might be a good idea to take her on a few brief jaunts around town before leaving on your vacation, to give her some familiarity riding in the vehicle.
- Packing for your pooch. Food should be an obvious one. Bring enough of your dog's regular food to last the entire trip. Running out and having to switch to a different brand while on vacation may not be the time to test out the hardiness of your doggy's digestive tract. I know I wouldn't be comfortable leaving things to chance in a closed environment! Bring along lots of water too, rather than risking it with the water at towns and cities along the way. As mentioned above, pack any medications that your dog is taking. Pack treats, toys, blankets and anything else that will help keep your dog comfortable and happy during the trip. Of course don't forget the biodegradable doggie bags. I buy EcoBio® Doggie Bags, but there are a number of different companies out there to choose from.
- Don't let Fido or Fidette, ride with their heads out the window. Aside from the potentiality of falling out of the vehicle, doing so could also subject him to inner ear damage & lung infections or, he could be injured by UFO's, or IFB's (identifiable flying bugs). In fact, it's a REALLY GOOD idea to invest in a doggy seat belt, to keep Fido safe and snug.
- If you're going camping or hiking with Rascal, you might also consider picking up a windbreaker, or raincoat for him. Or, maybe you're heading to the beach? If that's the case, you might think about picking up a good doggy sunscreen, I know, I know, "a doggy sunscreen??" Read this article to find out why sunscreen for your dog might be a good idea.
- This one is REALLY important! Be sure and keep Fido cool by keeping the windows cracked, or by running the AC, and Never, Never, Ever leave Fluffy unattended in the vehicle! In just 10 minutes, temperatures inside a car can exceed 50 degrees Celsius/120 degrees Fahrenheit. These kinds of temperatures can result in heatstroke, which can lead to collapse, brain damage, and an agonizing death. Nobody wants Fido's vacation to be a permanent one, especially Fido!
Oh, and don't forget the triple Venti Hazelnut Latte's, it's gonna be a long drive! Bon Voyage!
Jim is the owner of www.doggybytes.ca a blog that Serves Up Byte-Size Info For Dog Lovers. You can follow Doggy Bytes on Twitter via @doggybytes and you can become a Doggy Bytes Facebook Fan by clicking here