With a bit of preparation, taking your pets on the road with you can be a great experience. We’ve put together a few travelling tips so that you and your pet arrive safely.
Before you leave:
Buckle up for safety
Pets permitted to wander around a vehicle unrestrained are not only a visual distraction for the driver, but also a safety hazard if the vehicle suddenly brakes or is involved in a crash. Using the right car restraint – be it a travel kennel, vehicle pet barrier, or pet car seat is crucial to ensure your pet’s safety. Long before your trip, it’s recommended to take your pet on shorter drives to help familiarize them with the restraint and to ensure they are comfortable being secured in a moving vehicle.
If you opt for a travel kennel, be sure it’s well ventilated and stabilized. The crate should be large enough for your pet to stand, sit, lie down, and turn around comfortably.
Temporary ID tag
When traveling away from home, every sight and smell is new to your pet and this could potentially cause them to behave differently or even wander away. To help protect them in the unfortunate event they run off, attach a temporary identification tag to their collar. This identification tag should include your name and a contact number where you can be easily reached so that your pet can be returned to you safely.
You may have already ensured that your vacation destination is pet-friendly, but what if you have to spend the night somewhere along the way? If your journey is long, be sure to map out potential lodgings along the way and confirm their pet policies before you leave as these can change without notice.
On the road:
Plan frequent pit stops
Although it’s tempting to push yourself for hours to get to your destination quicker, your pet will need several breaks. Expect to stop every two or three hours to let them out of the vehicle to stretch their legs, eat, and do their business.
Never leave your pet in a parked vehicle
Even with the windows open, a hot day can cause serious health risks for your pet. Leaving a pet in the car during cold weather is just as dangerous as cars can hold in the frigid air which could also cause serious health risks.
Have a travel kit for your pet (for long distances)
If you’re planning a long distance trip with your pet, make sure to pack a pet travel kit. When creating your pet’s travel kit, think about anything they may need along the way. Every pet travel kit should have food, a bowl for water, a leash, a waste scoop, plastic bags, a pet first-aid kit, and their favourite toy for comfort.
Make sure to pack almost everything before you leave to help reduce lengthy pit stops so that your pet isn’t left unattended for long periods of time.
Car Window Safety
Make sure to lock the power windows in your vehicle so that they aren’t accidentally triggered as this could cause an unsafe situation and potential choking hazard for your pet.
Although many pets enjoy sticking their head out the window, it’s not safe for them as they could accidentally fall out of the moving vehicle or even get injured by flying debris.
Prepare your pet for the ride
Just as it’s important for you to feel relaxed on your road trip, your pet’s travel experience should be made as enjoyable as possible too – especially if you want them to willingly travel on road trips again.
To help your pet stay more comfortable during your drive, give them plenty of exercise to help burn off excess energy before travel.
Whichever safety harness you choose to restrain your pet, make sure their comfort is a priority.
Enjoy the ride!