Tips on How to Travel with Your Pet

Taking a pet from one place to another can be a little bit of an ordeal. Whether you’re going on holiday, or you’re traveling for business, or you’re moving to a new home in a new part of the world, a pet can impose an additional layer of stress and complication.

Fortunately, this is a problem that countless pet-owners have had to contend with at one point or another, and there are a few proven strategies that will help you to deal with the problem. All pets are different, and so your mileage might vary with each of these – but each is worth a try!

Keep your pet restrained

If your pet is free to roam around the inside of the vehicle while it’s in motion, then there’s a chance that it will distract the driver and cause an accident. Moreover, if you have to stop suddenly, then there’s the chance you’ll cause an injury to an unrestrained animal. Article 57 of the Highway Code insists on restraining pets, either via a cage or a harness. You might find that your pet doesn’t take to certain kinds of restraint – so make a point of experimenting.

Take Practice Trips

A car can be an unfamiliar and distressing place for a pet to be. This is especially the case if they associate it with trips to the vet and other stressful events. Make a point of taking your pet in the car regularly – and for fun activities. That way, they’ll be accustomed to their surroundings, and less likely to stress out.

Keep them Comfortable

Anything you can do to provide your pet with comfortable surroundings is surely worth doing. Favorite toys, blankets, and other items are all worth taking along.
If you are going on a long trip, you should consider traveling with your pet and take the time to find a sturdy dog stroller. It should be lightweight, but heavy enough to keep your dog from moving around too much. A good stroller can also provide your dog with some level of comfort and protection from the elements. Just make sure that it has a handle for carrying or it will be difficult to transport over unpaved surfaces or uneven terrain.

Make sure you have the right paperwork

If you’re crossing borders, then you’ll need to make sure that your pet is entitled to come along for the trip. This may mean a health certificate and even a separate passport. Different territories will impose different travel restrictions on animals, so make sure that you’re apprised of them before you set out. If you’re taking your dog in a special kind of vehicle, like a motorhome, then be sure that you have the appropriate insurance.

Don’t leave them alone

Pets will have a much easier time coping with travel if they have you there to reassure them. In some cases, such as when you’re traveling by air, this will be impracticable at certain points in the journey. So, make sure that you’re there whenever you reasonably can be.

This applies especially during hot weather. Don’t leave your dog alone in a hot car, or they may quickly begin to suffer. Under the 1971 Criminal Damage Act, strangers may feel that they can smash your windows to prevent your dog from dying. So don’t put it in that situation.

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