Pet Traveling Part One: Canines
When going on vacation and bringing your four-legged family member along can be somewhat dangerous. Here are some safety tips you should use for this summer’s vacation! Remember, we want to keep our furry loved-ones safe too!
Before you leave: Depending on where you go, you should double check with your vet if your dog is up to date with all their shots. Make vacation ID tags. These tags should have your cell number and the hotel you are staying at labeled clearly with the hotel’s address. Try a couple of trial runs with your dog in the car to see if he will even like the experience. Some dogs get motion sickness. If there is room in your vehicle it is best to buy a crate and stick it in the back with the front facing the driver. While on the road: Water is essential to bring on road trips for dogs. When they are excited they pant, and when they pant they become thirsty. Have water and a bowl available to your dog, and be sure to plan pit stops for them as well.
Remember: before even opening the door of the vehicle, have your dog on a leash! It is very important that you do not let your dog roam freely in the car, whether in the backseat, the bed of a truck, and especially not the front seat. Your dog should be strapped in just like every other family member. If you let your lap dog in you lap while driving, you are putting them at great risk if there was an accident because the dog would be crushed between you and the airbag. To keep your pet safe, you have two main options: a crate or a seat-belt harness. Safety first! Whether your dog is riding shot gun or cruising in the back seat.
It is important that your fidgety dog is secured by a harness seat belt (more liberating) or well ventilated cage. You can buy a pet specific seat belt similar to the “Y” straps on infant car seats. As for windows, we all know a dog’s simple pleasure is the wind in his face, but that is strictly for Sunday driving around town. Rocks, grit, debris, bugs and dust in the air can be damaging to your dogs eyes, nostril and windpipe. Also, sometimes bumps and the like startle dogs into jumping ship as it were. We do not want that! The best advice I can give you is to get a crate! Even a divider between the backseat and trunk/cargo area isn’t enough to protect your pet in a crash.
Make sure the crate is large enough for him to stand, sit, lie down, and turn around–but not so large that she can pace. Place the crate in the back, facing forward (to prevent car sickness). Pick a hard crate for safety and undo his leash to prevent dangerous tangling.