Traveling with your pets is a great way to enjoy your summer vacation. If it’s possible to bring your pet cat, dog, rabbit, or bird with you, it can help to reduce stress in both you and your furry friend. However, there are a number of things that you should keep in mind if you are planning to drive, fly, or travel by other means with your pet.

In this article, we will look at what you keep in mind to make the journey with your pet as enjoyable as possible.

Of course, the first thing you should take into consideration is if it’s advisable to bring your pet with you. Sometimes, age, health issues, or your destination could mean that it’s not a good idea to have your pet travel with you. However, if you think that it’s safe, here are a few things to keep in mind.

Driving with a pet

If you are taking your pet dog, cat, or another animal in an automobile, it’s important to make sure that your pet can travel in safety. Pets should be properly restrained to prevent the injuring themselves or causing an accident.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration found that in-vehicle distractions caused by pets are a cause of many accidents. They recommend that you secure pets traveling in the car to prevent unnecessary accidents.[1]

Your local vet can advise on seatbelt harnesses, pet carriers, or suitable guards to make sure that everyone gets to the destination safely.

You should also make sure that if you plan to cross state lines, your pet has the appropriate Certificate of Veterinary Inspection. You can arrange to receive this after your vet has done a proper examination of your pet.

Flying with your pet

Most airlines request that your pet dog can fit under the seat in front of you on the aircraft. The only exception to this is if your pet is a service dog. This means that you should find a suitable pet carrier that is in harmony with your airline’s cabin baggage restrictions.

You will have to check with your airline about pets like rabbits and household birds to see if they are allowed on the flight. There may also be an extra fee if you want to take your pet with you, so you should check with your airline.

Another consideration is if your pet will travel well in the aircraft. Changes in cabin pressure can make pets nervous and uneasy in the cabin. Apart from causing disruptions to other passengers on the flight, if your pet dog is constantly barking, it can be very stressful for your pet.

Other practical tips for traveling with a pet

Here are some general tips for traveling with your pet, whether you are flying or driving:

  • Take your dog for a long walk before traveling. This will help tire them out before the journey.
  • Try to avoid feeding your dog or giving him water at least 2 hours before a flight. This can help to avoid nasty accidents.
  • Plan ahead to have the proper pet supplies at your destination.

If you can’t take your pet

If you decide that you can’t travel with your pet, what should you do? You need to find a trusted friend or service that will look after your pet’s needs while you are gone.

Source: 1. Distractions: In and Out of the Vehicle by the NHTSA.