Our dogs are a big part of the family, so when summer and the holiday season comes around, it’s only natural that we want to include them in any trips so they don’t miss out on quality time with the family. It can be hard for owners to leave their furry friend behind and there are many advantages of bringing pets along on holiday. But it’s important to consider what this entails and to make sure that you think of any necessary steps to take in advance.
If you’ll be driving for any long journeys as part of your trip, then think about taking steps to make your dog as comfortable as possible during travel (everyone will thank you for it!). Taking toys to entertain them, bedding or a blanket for comfort, and treats and plenty of water for stops will help keep them happy and content. Be sure to take regular breaks to let your dog have a quick controlled run around, toilet break and also a small snack because feeding large meals during the journey itself isn’t advisable.
Whether you’re off to somewhere more exotic, or simply taking a ‘staycation’, there are certain things that always apply when travelling with your pet. These include packing the following essentials to make the trip as hassle-free as possible for both you and your pet:
- Collar or ID tag – with all of your contact details, including your holiday address, plus a microchip with up to date details held in the database.
- Food – enough for their normal daily amount plus extra and some treats.
- Water and food bowls, including an extra outdoor water bowl for any day trips or long walks.
- Lead – plus a spare in case it should get misplaced.
- Poo bags – to act just as you would at home when it comes to your dog’s waste.
- Bed and bedding/blankets – familiar items help your dog settle in a new place.
- Dog shampoo and brush – to keep up their usual grooming routine and for some extra tlc!
- Toys – bring a variety to keep them active and engaged, useful for play time and the journey too.
If you like to jet to further afield over the summer then, thanks to the Pet Travel Scheme (PETS), people are allowed to both enter and take their dogs out of the UK to most countries in Europe without quarantine requirements, as long as they meet certain conditions. It is possible to travel to other countries such as the United States, Canada, Australia and New Zealand, but there will be a plethora of pre-travel tests that your pet may have to undergo. If you’re planning on taking your dog abroad then you’ll need to make sure they have the following to comply with the scheme: a microchip, a rabies vaccination (ensuring they’re microchipped first or the vaccination won’t be valid), a pet passport or official third country veterinary certificate, and proof of tapeworm treatment. You can get a pet passport from any Government approved vet, and while you’re there it’s worth arranging a general health check for your dog to make sure they are their fittest self for all the holiday activities!
Plan wisely for any travel with furry family members, researching your destination and accommodation, and making a checklist of everything they might need while you’re away and it’ll help prevent any issues during the trip – leaving you more time to relax and enjoy the break.