Whether you’re an adventurous spirit, move around often for work or are simply looking to take a vacation, traveling is full of experiences and moments that you’ll remember forever. So, why not share the journey with your best furry friend?
No matter if it’s a train, plane or automobile, we want to make sure that when our pets are on the go with us - that they stay happy, healthy and protected.
If you’re thinking of taking your pet for a ride in the car, hopping on a plane or making a move across the country - here are 5 tips and best practices you should remember when traveling with your pet.
5 Tips & Best Practices For Traveling With Your Pet
Before Your Trip, Bring Your Pet To The Vet For a Checkup
Prior to taking your pet on any kind of major trip, you should schedule an appointment with your veterinarian for a checkup.
The reason for doing this is truly precautionary and to ensure that your pet is in top notch health before embarking on your journey. Just like for many humans, traveling can often evoke stressful feelings in pets. They are taken out of their secure home environment and met with unfamiliar sensory objects that may cause them to feel anxiety or nervousness.
Therefore, in addition to a checkup to make sure your pet’s overall health is in excellent condition, you should ask your veterinarian for any expert tips on how to keep your pet calm and steady during their trip. Many professionals do not recommend sedating your pet before a long flight, so instead listen to your vet’s recommendations on how to create a comfortable environment for your pet.
Lastly, while you’re at the vet’s office, you’ll want to check that your pet’s vaccination records are fully up to date. This is important as many airlines and travel providers will want a proof of health and any records for your pet prior to accepting them as a passenger.
Purchase a Safety & Traveling Approved Crate
Another step you’ll need to take in preparation for your trip is to purchase an approved crate.
This crate should be used in all types of trips including car rides, trains and flights. If you decide to not use a crate while traveling with your pet in a car, you’ll need to purchase a harness or leash to keep them buckled and secure. The crate you purchase should be well ventilated and should also be large enough for your pet to fully stand up and move around.
Remember, your pet could be in this crate for hours on end, so you’ll want them to be as comfortable as possible. Another tip for your crate is to make sure that it has some form of lining in the case of any accidents. You can also add a pet blanket to make it more comfortable for your pet.
Lastly, your pet is guaranteed to get thirsty and hungry during the trip. So, if you’re flying and unable to attend to your pet, purchasing a water bottle that connects to the crate is the best solution to keep your pet hydrated and placing a small bowl of food or treats will curb their hunger.
It is also recommended that your crate be securely closed, but not locked. In any case of emergency, a travel attendant may need to open your pet’s crate and take them out.
Bring Proper Identification & Any Records For Your Pet
In addition to preparing your pet for a comfortable trip, you’ll need to verify that you have all of your pet’s records on hand to show to the travel provider as well as their latest form of identification.
Records usually include vaccinations or any other papers that highlight your pet’s current health status. And, as for identification, there are a few forms to consider:
- A tag on your pet’s collar - this should include their name, address and a contact number
- Ask your veterinarian if there is any other form of identification they recommend for you to bring as a backup
- Copy of your pet’s registration that is usually obtained when they are adopted or bought
Copies of all these documents are sufficient as you don’t want to lose the originals.
Just like you need your state ID or passport to travel, your pet needs identification, an emergency contact and vaccination records.
Put Together A Travel Kit For Your Furry Friend
Now, that you’ve put together the precautionary elements for your pet’s trip, you’ll need to make a travel bag for them to use the day of your adventure.
Think of this travel kit as your pet’s own carry-on bag. You’ll want to include comforts of home as well as the essentials. This includes:
- Food (preferably dry)
- Water Bottle
- Any medications they may need / first aid kit
- Waste bags / Scooper
- Their favorite toy
- Extra treats
- Grooming supplies such as brush
- Copy of their documents and identification
If you’re leaving your pet during the trip, some of these items will go with them in their crate such as food, water and their favorite toy. Yet, be cautious as to how much you place in your pet’s crate because you don’t want them to cause a mess or feel claustrophobic.
Lastly, if your pet needs to take any form of medication, you’ll need to communicate this with the travel attendant in the instance that your flight has a layover. If possible, it’s best to try and book a straight through journey while traveling with a pet, in order to avoid causing your pet unnecessary, added stress.
Now, that you know exactly how to prepare and travel safely with your pet, let’s talk about how you can keep them even more protected during your trip and for the rest of their life.
Pet travel insurance covers the loss, injury or death of your pet during a trip. This insurance should be held by the carrier company you may use to transport your pet. You should ensure that they are licensed and provide a minimum amount of pet travel insurance.
But, the best way to ensure that your pet is always protected during travel is to set them up with a lifetime pet insurance policy.
Pet insurance is a guaranteed way to know that your pet is protected no matter. Whether an accident occurs, they fall sick or simply need a checkup - a good insurance plan can keep your pet healthy and happy for many years to come.
Especially when you’re traveling, pet insurance can be the added safety net that gives you the peace of mind knowing that your pet has the coverage they need. While you never want anything to happen to your best friend, you’ll be able to travel lighter knowing that your pet is in good hands.
With Fursure Insurance, you can travel with your pup and feel confident that they are protected no matter what. Enjoy your adventure with your furry friend and leave the financials to us. You can learn all about our pet insurance plans, here.