How To Safely Travel With Pets

travel with pets

With the weather finally warming up, it’s only natural to start thinking about getting away from the house. Whether you want to go on vacation or you are moving to a new home, you’ll have to consider accommodations for your pet. If you must bring your pet with you, we strongly suggest traveling with them, as your presence can drastically de-stress them. Your companion’s safety is of utmost importance when you take them out of the house, so here are some tips on how to safely travel with pets.

Driving

This is the best method of travel, as you can safely secure your pet and keep them under constant supervision. We recommend keeping your pet enclosed in a crate or carrier so they are as safe as possible while on the road. We understand that your pet may want to stick his head out of the window, but it’s safest to keep them in their crate or a doggie seatbelt. Roaming around the car, and especially staying in the front seats, can be extremely dangerous, so it’s best to keep them restrained in the back. Cats should be kept in carriers at all times while the car is moving. Additionally, be sure to make regular stops to let your pet move around and relieve themselves, if needed. While at a stop, remember to never leave your pet in the car unattended! It can be fun to travel with pets, but it is ultimately your responsibility to protect them.

Flying

Generally speaking, you should avoid flying with your pet, if possible. Flying can be very stressful and even harmful for your pets (especially for those with “pushed in” faces). If you have no other options but to travel with pets via plane, you should call the airline well in advance and ask if you can bring a small cat or dog into the cabin. You’ll want to avoid having them stored in the cargo hold, but if all else fails, there are still steps you can take to ensure their safety. Please follow these tips if you cannot avoid placing your pet in the cargo hold:

  • Call the airline to ask about the loading process
  • Always fly on the same flight as your pet
  • Always fly directly to your destination
  • Clip your pet’s nails and make sure their collars are tight
  • Do not give your pet sleeping pills
  • Notify a flight attendant that you have a pet in the cargo hold
  • Label your pet’s crate/carrier with your name and contact information, and carry a photo of your pet
  • When you arrive, take your pet out of the container and make sure they are okay

We do not suggest bringing pets with “pushed in” faces in the cargo hold for any period of time. If you have any questions about how to prepare your pet for a cargo hold flight, contact your airline or an animal specialist.

Leave Them At Home

Frankly, the safest measure to take is to leave your pet at home, if you can. They will have a much better time spending time with a relative, friend, or dog sitter than having to travel with you en route to your vacation. If you’re moving, flying with your pet should only be treated as a last resort. Driving or taking them on the train is the safest method of transportation; if you must fly yourself, consider asking someone you know to transport your pet on the road. If you need any further tips to travel with pets or accommodations for your trip, please contact Cherrelyn Animal Hospital for everything you may need!

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