7 min read
How often have you been out for a vacation and missed having your pet around? For a lot of pet parents, travelling with pets can seem overwhelming. But don’t worry! We have put together a list of things to keep in mind to help you plan your next trip, and this time with your furry friend!
"I'd love to travel with my dog to the beach but I'm unsure of how to manage the street dogs there, so the beaches will have to wait for us! Instead we usually pick a quieter hillside or plains where we can manage the environment a bit more." says Ayesha, mother of Buddy.
Having your research in place and doing a comprehensive analysis of the situations you may face while travelling can help you decide your perfect destination. Remember to always be mindful of your pet’s needs.
Road trips are the most convenient and fun way of travelling with your furry one. If you’re travelling by trains or by airlines, make sure you contact them before booking your tickets to understand the protocols set by them for travelling with pets. This information should be available in detail on their website as well. It’s safer to plan months in advance so if they require any vaccination certificates for your pets, you have sufficient time to get them.
HUFT Tip: If your pet suffers from motion-sickness, it’s best to consult your vet in order to understand the most convenient way for you to travel with your pet. If you’re on a road trip, take breaks every two hours. Ensure your pet stays hydrated and has clean drinking water at all times.
Find a pet-friendly hotel that can help you follow this routine and also cater to your pet’s special needs, if any. It’s always helpful to ring up the hotels and later ask for an email-confirmation so they don’t back out last minute. Remember to also keep a list of pet-friendly restaurants in the area where you’re living.
While travelling with pets, it’s important to be strapped and ready for all kinds of situations. Here’s a travel essentials checklist you can’t do without:
As a general rule, try to stick to your pet’s daily meal routine on your vacation. Carry easy-to-serve and digest dry dog food and dry cat food since they come in secure packaging that doesn’t spill easily. You can always add a bit of water to them for extra hydration. Do not forget pet treats for your dog and cat! They will be extremely helpful if you wish to distract your pet from something. Pack extra packs of food and treats as a precaution.
Easy to wash travel-friendly bowls will be a lifesaver. Carry two of these bowls - one for food and one for hydration. Ensure your pet stays hydrated and has clean drinking water at all times.
HUFT Tip: If your pet has motion sickness, do not give them their meal just before you start your trip. Wait for 2-3 hours and then begin your journey. If you’re travelling with a puppy in a car or with your kitten, be extra mindful of their mealtimes and hydration needs.
Whether it’s your car or the train, make sure your pet travels and naps with comfort. Choose pet mats that can easily be rolled up. These do not take up a lot of space and can easily be carried anywhere. Your pet will also appreciate it if you pack their favourite blanket or pillow that can give them a sense of familiarity in a new environment.
The biggest concern for all pet parents for when they’re travelling with pets is - where will they pee and poop? Apart from taking regular bathroom breaks, pack reusable pee pads for dogs and easy-to-flush cat litter for your feline. You can also carry disposable diapers for puppies or senior dogs. While visiting any place, use easy-to-dispose poop bags to avoid littering around.
HUFT Tip: Cats like their privacy when they’re doing their business. If you’re travelling with more than one cat, remember to keep extra litter trays. As a rule of thumb, for two cats, there should be three cat litter trays.
We know what you’re wondering: Is grooming really important while travelling? Simple answer is yes, it is! Humid climates can easily make your pet’s coat matted and tangled. Similarly, beaches and hills are a great place for your pet to pick up ticks and fleas. Hence, it’s important to carry grooming essentials while travelling with pets.
Here are some that you can carry along:
Your pet will require their own playtime, even when you’re on a vacation. Keep at least two of your pet’s favourite dog toys or cat toys with you—one for indoors and one for outdoors. Not only will they keep your pet entertained while you’re occupied, these toys can provide a sense of familiarity that will help them transition into a new environment easily.
With new environments, it’s possible for your pet to lose their way from you. Hence, it’s best to always be prepared. Get your pet a personalised name tag with your contact details. This will make it easier for anyone to identify your pet and help them reach you in case of an emergency.
We recommend always keeping your pet on a leash and harness during travels for their own safety. Make sure your dog’s collars, leashes and harnesses are comfortable, easy to handle and highly durable. Contrary to popular belief, cats too need sturdy and comfortable cat collars, leashes and harnesses for their safety. You can also use a multipurpose dog leash that can be used as a long leash!
HUFT Tip: If you’re heading to rough or hilly terrain or beaches with your dog, you can also pack them their shoes and boots. Remember to let your pet get used to them before you begin your journey.
While travelling with cats, crates or carriers can be a life-saver. Car seat belts can keep your dog safe. You can also use a car seat cover to avoid fur and drool on the car seats. Additionally, you can place pet mats on the car seats for comfortable travel.
If you’re travelling with a senior pet, jumping up and down from a car can cause stress on their joints. A pet ramp can help your pet move in and out of cars with ease.
Having a first aid kit for yourself and your pet is extremely important for any trip. It’s always best to be prepared for any surprises. Pack emergency pet medicines that can help you for minor injuries or stomach upsets. It’s also helpful to consult your vet for any specific medicines that you should carry that can help with your pet’s special needs.
HUFT Tips: Ask your vet for charcoal tablets! This can be given orally to your dog if they ingest something non edible and can serve as an emergency medication.
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