How To Vacation With Your Pet

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

The Best Ways To Bring Your Fuzzy Friends On A Trip

We all love to travel, but leaving our pets behind can be sad. They are part of the family too! And want to experience life’s adventures with us. You can take them with you whether you are heading to the beach for the weekend, on a road trip in fall or just to families house over the summer. Why not spend that extra time with your pet instead of hiring a pet sitter. Having the best cheap pet insurance around  will help put your mind at ease while on this journey. You can find a cheap quote for pet insurance within minutes!

There are some obstacles you may need to overcome to include your pet in whatever vacation you and your family want to go on. Maybe a trip to Europe is a bit extreme, but your basic holiday fun can be even more so with a pet. From finding the right hotels, to understanding your pets needs and anxieties, a vacation can be pet friendly. One of the many things dogs love is to be with their owners or “pack”. Dogs instinctually love to be with other dogs and humans. They don’t do well alone. And even if you have a pet sitter coming to check in on them when you are away, let’s face it, they know you are gone. They get lonely and want to be wherever you are.

What Dogs Want

Have you ever asked your dog “Want to go on a car ride?”. They tilt their head in a cute manner as if to sympathize. “Yes!” is what they wish they could say. Even if your dog gets a little anxiety in the car, they still would rather be going wherever you are than to be at home alone. Cats, birds and other types of pets I’ll admit, are harder to take on vacation. Although it can be done, you may not experience the best vacation with any other pet besides your dog. So for the sake of this subject, we will stick to our canine friends as examples.

Loading up kids, luggage, pillows and blankets might seems like a lot in itself. Add a dog to the mix and you may need a bigger car. There are ways to make packing and traveling easier with your fuzzy best friend. Let’s talk about the ways you can travel safely and happily with your pet by your side. Making sure you have cheap car insurance readily available is a must anytime you travel. Getting the extra roadside assistance won’t hurt either. Getting all of your ducks in a row liability-wise is always a great idea. From pet insurance bills being paid, to renters or homeowners insurance bills being paid before you leave on vacation, you can have peace of mind.

Types Of Pet Friendly Vacations

The first thing you will want to look at when planning a vacation with your pet is how many people are also going on vacation. Are you going as a family of four? Or will it just be you and your dog. To make the experience great, you will want to look into renting a car or SUV that can fit everyone comfortably. You will also want to make sure that you get a list going of the items you need to keep your pet comfortable along the journey. Let’s take a few examples and show how a trip with all of the family members can work.

Example 1: Heading To The Beach For The Weekend

Even if the beach is four or five hours away from you, getting out to the water just sounds relaxing. Maybe you are renting a pet friendly Air B&B. Perhaps you intend to camp. Either way, let’s talk about the travel portion of your journey. Rent a car or SUV that can comfortably fit everyone in your family. Maybe you already have one. A van with the rear seats taken out can make for a nice place your dog will love relaxing. Taking a crate for them to sleep in can make them feel more comfortable. It gives them a “den-like” area to go to.

If you are planning on bringing a crate, make sure you dog has a couple of bones and toys in their as well as plenty of water. A crate is a great tool to have when traveling for many reasons. One is that wherever you are staying, you can always put them in their crate for short periods of time. If you need to run to the grocery store in town, or perhaps your family wants a nice dinner on the town, crate your animal. Never leave a dog unattended in a foreign house or hotel room. Not only could they get up to trouble, but they will get far more anxiety with all of the crazy smells around. Dogs noses are very sensitive. Take this into consideration when you travel. They are smelling everything 100 times more than you are.

How Dogs Feel

They can even smell dogs that have been in that place before. When traveling to the beach specifically, you will want to bring plenty of old, nasty towels with you. Don’t bring your nice ones because they will most likely get destroyed. Dogs love the water, but many times after swimming it can make them sick. From swallowing sea water to over exertion, throwing up is common for dogs after a long day in the water. Try and limit their time in the water. If this means timing them for 20 minutes of play and then 20 minutes of rest, do it. Depending on the breed of dog you have, water-play can be down right tiring.

Bring a hair dryer. Even if you don’t use one yourself, this will save you a ton of time waiting for your best friend to dry before letting them back into that rented house or hotel. Take a few extra minutes and blow dry them off. Getting all of the sand and yucky water out of their hair will help keep your rental cleaner as well. Make sure your dog stayed well hydrated when swimming or running at the beach. They probably aren’t used to this type of exertion. Make sure you bring fresh water and a bowl to the beach. You can buy a gallons worth of bottled water and collapsable bowl. This makes life easy for them and you won’t have to worry about them getting dehydrated or getting a stomach ache.  The kids will fully enjoy watching their dog at the beach. It will be worth the extra effort to bring your pooch on this kind of fun vacation with you.

Example 2: Going To Families For The Holidays

This is a big one for anybody who travels over the Holiday season. To take the dog or not to take the dog. You will of course need the permission of family if you can bring them. But there are ways around this as well. Let’s say you are going for a three day weekend to your aunts house in Southern California. You will be staying in her guest bedroom. She has a backyard and a dog of her own. Your dog and her dog get along, but there is still always extra anxiety when you have an extra loved one to care for. Just remember to stay organized. This means taking your dog out for walks frequently when visiting family. This might mean waking up earlier than everyone else and getting in a jog or hike with just you and the pooch. Realize that your aunts homeowners insurance policy might not cover dogs and dog bites. Ask about this if you have any questions.

What To Bring

Make sure you bring that handy crate along again. Even if your dog and your aunts dog get along, you may want to separate them at times. This will reduce stress for both dogs and give them a mental break. Imagine how much stress you feel just being around family over the holidays. Dogs feel it too. Give them their own separate toys and chew bones in their crate. If you are allowed, keep the crate in the room where you are staying. This way your dog can be in with you at night and not feel exiled. If your dog is well-behaved and allowed to be in the house, remember to give people space as not everyone will be as much of a dog lover as you are.

One thing you can do before heading on this vacation is to go over what your pet knows. How well do they listen? Can they sit and come on command. Practice a little behavior repetition and be firm about how they should behave when traveling. Don’t let everything go out the window just because you are taking a trip. If you are going with the whole family, have a family meeting where you discuss what the dog is allowed and not allowed to do at other people’s homes. Have the kids practice making your pet sit and stay as well. Always reward good behavior, but set an example at home first before you even leave the house.

Staying In Hotels

Many people take their pets with them everywhere. Business trips, holidays, it doesn’t matter. The more you travel with your pet, the better they can handle the trips. One part of traveling that can be sort of stressful is if you stay in a hotel. There are many hotels that are pet friendly. Almost all of the Motel 6 chains accept pets in the rooms. Check out a list of online pet friendly hotels before you start planning your next vacation. You might be surprised at the amount of hotels willing and eager to take on your best friend. There might be an added charge so be warned. But as long as your dog doesn’t destroy anything inside of the room or on the hotels property, you should be fine. Pet friendly hotels are not any more expensive than regular costs of rooms.

Think Like A Dog

When you are looking for a hotel to bring in your fuzzy friend remember to think like a dog. Remember to get a smoke free room. If you can, get a lower level room so you don’t have to take your dog up and down stairs. Bring that handy crate if you can just in case. If you can snag a hotel that has a dog park nearby your dog will thank you. Giving them a little social interaction and play time could be refreshing. Understand that even in the most pet friendly hotels, most dogs are not allowed to hang out in the lobby. If you plan to get a free breakfast in the mornings or a night cap at the bar before bed, crate your pooch and bring your food and drink back up to the room.

Room service is always a good idea. Many times when someone knocks at the door, your dogs automatic response is to bark. This is their nature to protect you and should not get in trouble for it. Instead when you order room service, ask how long it will take and wait outside the room for your treats. Or simply ask the whoever is bringing you room service to slip a note under the door instead of knock. Your neighbors will thank you.

Rural Trips

Sometimes all you want to do with your dog is head out to the great unknown. Hiking, camping and adventure are so fun when you have mans best friend by your side. But there are many things to remember when taking a dog out into the wilderness. Safety is the biggest concern for pet owners. Not only are there predators in nature that your dog could come across, there are natural elements like rivers that can be dangerous. The best thing to do is plan where you are going very thoroughly. This means knowing what hikes you will take ahead of time. Maybe read some reviews in the severity of the hike and ask yourself if your dog is up for it.

The breed of dog you have will have a huge impact on the kind of outdoor trips you can take. Is your dog used to hanging out on the couch with you? maybe don’t plan for that ten mile hike you so eagerly want to accomplish. Maybe you run or hike often with your furry friend. They can handle more terrain than you can in most instances. Always bring a backpack with enough water for you and your dog. You might not run into fresh water out where you are headed. You can find plastic or rubber collapsable bowls for the dog and thermo water bottles for your personal water. Bringing both of you a snack will be a great reward when you get to the top of whatever mountain you are trying to climb.

Safety

Have your dogs tag updated with the correct information. You can even get a lit-up collar or glow in the dark collar. Bring a whistle just in case you lose sight of your dog. This might also come in handy if you get into trouble yourself. Look at some different websites about the great outdoors and safety items you should invest in before you head out on a fantastic adventure.

Most of all, spend as much time with your pet as possible.

Vacations can be fun and even better when you bring along your trusted buddy.

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