Dog-Friendly Travel: Exploring the World with Your Canine Companion
What could be better than discovering all the world had to offer? Do it with your four-legged companion!
Dogs can make great travel buddies, adding to the trip’s fun. Traveling with a pet isn’t as easy as picking up your pooch, throwing some things into your backpack, and heading out. There are many things to consider, from finding the right accommodation to packing your dog’s favorite squeaky toy.
Feels overwhelming? That’s what this guide is for! Once you take care of your academic obligations with essaypro reviews and make other arrangements, here’s what you should consider if you want to share your traveling experience with your furry friend.
But First: Will Your Dog Like Traveling?
Dogs are generally more up for a trip than cats and other indoorsy pets, but that doesn’t mean every dog will love going outside their comfort zone. After all, traveling involves going to unfamiliar places and spending time in unfamiliar environments – sometimes loud and crowded.
So, think back to how your dog reacts to similar settings. Are they usually anxious around strangers or in crowds? Are they skittish in general? Do they whine or scramble under the furniture whenever there’s a loud noise?
If that sounds like something your dog would do or has done in the past, it may not make for a great travel companion. In this case, they should stay behind in a safe, predictable environment.
Teach Your Dog Some Manners
Before you set out on a trip with your four-legged friend, it’s better to make sure they can obey some basic commands, like “stay” or “sit.” Navigating new situations will be much easier when you know you can leave them alone for a quick moment.
Plus, if you can demonstrate your dog knows how to behave, you’re way more likely to hear “yes” to your requests in a hotel or motel, for example!
Find Dog-Friendly Accommodation
Not all places let you stay with your pets; keep that in mind. So, when you book your stay, double-check that your pup will be allowed to spend nights there with you. Otherwise, you risk a bad surprise.
Make sure to read the pet policy carefully. For one, some places may charge you an additional fee for the pet. Beyond that, there can be other rules and restrictions for your stay. For example, some hotels may prohibit you from leaving your dog alone in the room; others may require you to leave them in a crate when they’re on their own.
Pack Up All the Essentials
If you want to share the joy of traveling with your canine companion, be prepared to pack twice as much luggage as you would for a trip on your own. That’s because you should remember to bring them:
- Treats and food;
- Collapsible travel bowls;
- Collar, leash, and harness;
- Travel crate;
- Seat cover;
- Medical records and other documents;
- Poop bags.
It’s also a good idea to get a travel water bottle for your furry friend and a dog seat belt if you plan to take the car with them.
If You Plan to Take a Road Trip with Your Pooch
Here are a few tips on how to make your road trip stress-free when your canine is riding shotgun:
- Get your dog used to car rides (if they’re not yet). Go on short drives with your pet so that they can get used to the rumbling sounds, loud wind, and vibrations. These drives will also help you see if your dog can handle road trips well.
- Use the dog seat belt. First, it may be required by law to secure your dog in place. Second, even if it’s not, it’s still a best practice: your furry friend won’t distract or interfere with the driver, be it you or someone else. This will also prevent them from jumping out of the car.
- Take as many breaks as your canine friend needs. Remember that your dog needs to exercise and go potty every once in a while. So, allow them to do so!
- Never leave your dog alone in the car. It’s common sense, but you’d be surprised how many still do it. Still, leaving your dog inside a car is dangerous: it can get hot fast, putting your furry friend at risk of heatstroke.
If You’re Flying With Your Dog
If your destination is one plane trip away, you can still share the joy of exploration with your canine companion. Here’s how to make your trip smooth:
- Check the airline’s pet transportation rules. Airlines have different rules on whether small dogs can be allowed in the cabin or what crate you should bring. Some airlines may require more pet documents than your destination country, too.
- Consider how stressful flying will be for your pet. In the cargo hold, it’s loud and dark; in the cabin, it’s still far from quiet. So, if your pooch is naturally anxious, it may be best for them to stay home. Otherwise, talking to your vet about ways to relax your dog during the flight can still be worth it.
- Get your dog used to the crate. Encourage them to spend time inside it before the trip. Put their favorite blanket or toy inside to help them get accustomed to it. And make sure the door latches are robust!
- Prioritize non-stop flights when booking. Flying once is already stressful for your furry friend. So, try to avoid routes with layovers, even if they cost less.
A Few Words About International Travel
If you’re traveling abroad, do your research on the entry requirements. Make sure it’s thorough: head to official resources, like governmental websites, and wrap your head around all the legalese. This will save you from panicking at the border if it turns out your dog isn’t allowed to enter.
Different countries have different entry rules, of course. Typically, they concern:
- The types of vaccinations your furry friend should have;
- Microchipping or tattoo for identification purposes;
- Documents (e.g., a health certificate).
In Conclusion, It’s Tough But Rewarding!
Traveling with your pooch for the first time is always overwhelming at first. But with thorough preparation, that stress will subside quickly, and you’ll be ready to explore the world with your canine friend!