Summer is already here and most certainly you are already planning your vacation. After working for an entire year, taking a break and relaxing is more than welcome. But what about your dog? No dog owner enjoys leaving his or her dog behind during a vacation. There’s something unsettling about knowing that you are away from one family member, even if it has four paws and fur.
However, vacationing with a dog implies several extra aspects you need to consider. First, you will need to choose a location that accepts pets or direct your attention toward a solution that can suit your dog as well. Then there are safety issues. Both you, your family, and the dog should be safe throughout the entire vacation. While you may think that it is complicated and stressful to have your dog along during your vacation, the following tips are meant to give you all a great time together.
• Safety first
Safety is very important for every member of the family, whether we are talking about adults, children, or dogs. Each should have the chance to travel in complete security and enjoy all the comfort available at the moment. In most cases, proper precaution methods will save you from a lot of trouble.
One of the most important things you should do, before you leave home, is to take your dog for a vet check. The vet will look for issues that may not be noticeable by the untrained eye, will give you useful pieces of advice for your trip and vacation, and will administer your dog a prevention treatment for fleas and ticks. Also, you will travel better knowing that your dog is in a good state of health.
Also, once you know your destination, make a list with vet clinics and pet shops around the area, just in case. A good idea would be to bring your dog’s vaccination record along, just in case. When traveling by car, make sure your dog is properly secured. Make stops along the way to give the dog the chance to drink water, stretch its legs, and go potty. And never leave your dog inside the car, even if you plan to leave for just 2 minutes.
• Make sure you pack all the items you need
When prepping for your vacation, you will have to pay attention to pack items for your dog as well. A leash and a collar or harness are must-have items. No matter how well-behaved or obedient your dog is, you may be requested to walk it on a leash. Water and food bowls are also necessary and should be on your list of items to pack. The good news is that you can find portable bowls, for increased convenience when traveling with your pet.
Of course, don’t forget about special waste bags. Whether you are at home or on a vacation, it is always recommended to collect the waste produced by your dog. And don’t hesitate to bring along some toys for your dog, for those moments you will have to stay indoors due to bad weather or looking to have some fun outdoors.
• Pay attention to accommodation options
When looking to travel with a dog, do not book anything before checking to see whether the property accepts pets on its premises. While there are many accommodations options that accept pets, it is always a good idea to check or to have clear confirmation of this aspect. It would be a real disappointment to reach your destination and realize that you cannot stay there with a dog.
Even if you found a place that accepts dogs, check to see whether this will generate additional costs. Some facilities will practice extra fees for guests that bring pets along. These fees may regard the actual accommodation of the dog, a special cleaning fee, or a pet deposit, which can be refundable or non-refundable. Considering that the budget is very important when vacationing, checking out all these small fees that can add up is definitely something you need to pay attention to. It would be wise to start considering this early on when saving for a vacation. A simple monthly budget template can be downloaded that can help allocate your funds appropriately.
• Bring along the right kind of supplies
Ideally, you should not change your dog’s menu when you’re away from home together. Any slight changes in the dog’s diet can transform into serious digestive issues if not even allergies and other complications. Yes, we humans tend to spoil ourselves during a vacation, allowing ourselves foods and slight excesses that we don’t normally do. But, in the case of dogs, this is not recommended at all.
So, resist the temptation to give your dog treats in the form of human foods. If you want to spoil your dog, bring along adequate treats for dogs or buy some from a pet shop. Do not change your dog’s food, so make sure you’re packing sufficient dog food with you. Even a slight change in your dog’s diet can trigger vomiting, diarrhea, and abdominal discomfort. The last thing you need is for your dog to have this kind of issues while you’re away from home.
Besides food and treats, you will need adequate water supplies as well. Because it can get quite hot in the summer, you need to keep your dog properly hydrated by offering it fresh water as often as possible. Bear in mind that heatstroke is a real danger for dogs in the hot summer months.
• Extra care is needed for older, sick, or special-needs dogs
Even if you have a senior dog or a dog with health problems, with a bit of attention and proper planning you can still enjoy a vacation together. Just make sure to pack the dog’s medicine, diapers or pads, vitamins, wheelchair if the case, and have the dog seen by the vet before your departure.
As you can see, vacationing with your dog is definitely not something hard to achieve. If you don’t have a dog just yet, but you plan on getting one, Charlotte Dog Club is here to help. Charlotte Dog Club helps dog enthusiasts find their dream puppies for years already, working with responsible dog breeders only. If you want a healthy, happy, and lovable puppy, this is the best place to start looking for it.