What could be better than a nice, relaxing vacation? Bringing your pet along for the ride, of course. However, trips by themselves can come with dozens of miniscule details that you can stress over – sometimes adding a pet to that mix can make those details feel overwhelming.
Whether you’re traveling for work or pleasure, your plans don’t have to be dampened by forcing you to leave your cat, dog, or other small animal behind. Here are some tips to help both you and your furry friend plan a comfortable travel experience.
How to Prepare for Traveling with an Animal
A lot of pet owners who frequently travel with their pets invest in an ESA letter. Registering your furry friend as an emotional support animal is inexpensive and can save you a ton of traveling hassle in the long run, both in getting the animal approved for flights and hotel stays (among other things).
Preparation before you leave for your trip is one of the essential keys to a successful journey – with or without your pet. By planning well in advance, you can save both your pet and you a lot of anxiety and discomfort. Here are a few things to do before you head out:
- Rehearse the Experience
If your animal has never experienced a long journey before this, you should help them get ready to minimize their stress when the time comes. Take them on short drives and increase the length of these test drives gradually. Make sure you have them in their crate for each practice drive, that way they will get more accustomed to traveling in it.
If you’re traveling by plane, go to the airport and walk around your airline terminal so that your pet can get used to the sounds and smells of the area. Always reward them for good behavior and continue to speak reassuringly to them to keep them calm.
- Prep the Crate for Optimal Comfort
A crate isn’t something you should skimp on. You don’t want your pet to be stuck in a too-small carrier for hours on end. Make sure the carrier you get is an appropriate size, and line it with cushioned blankets, pillows, and maybe a few things that smell like home to your pet.
- No Crate? No Problem
Not everybody wants to use a crate, especially when traveling by car. Just make sure your pet is in a safe position at all times in case of an accident. Attaching a harness to a seat belt buckle in the backseat of your car is an easy way to travel with a pet.
Benefits of Traveling with Your Fur Baby
Traveling is an amazing experience on its own and bringing your beloved pet along for the ride can only make it more special. Nothing beats the bonding and companionship of journeying together. Here are a few benefits of traveling with your pet:
- You can form a closer bond
A one-of-a-kind experience for the both of you is sure to result in a stronger relationship by the end.
- You are forced to slow down
Trips with a pet tend to be slower paced and, in turn, more relaxing. Animals are calming creatures – why do you think emotional support animals are so common?
- You can meet more people
Pets are great conversation starters. When strangers see someone walking a well-behaved dog on a leash, it is not uncommon for them to approach the owner and start a friendly conversation centered around the loving pooch.
- You may be safer
Dogs have much better hearing than humans – they can alert you to a potential threat with enough time for you to prepare yourself.
Take That Trip
We hope we’ve inspired you to take your pet along for the ride next time you go somewhere. Save money on a petsitter and enjoy a different kind of travel buddy on the road!