Traveling with a Dog

Traveling is fun, exciting, and sometimes a bit stressful—add a dog into the mix and suddenly you’ve got a lot on your hands! However, it doesn’t have to be scary for you or your pup if you are well prepared. Consider these tips as you get ready to travel with your furry friend.
First of all, you’ll want to take your dog for a quick check-up with your veterinarian before making any travel plans. They can talk you through some of the protocols and help you decide how you should keep your dog safe and calm. You should also make sure your dog has proper identification, such as a dog tag or a chip, before going anywhere.
Next, you’ll want to determine your mode of travel. For dogs, the airport can be really overwhelming and it’s best to only fly your pet if they are small enough to ride in the main cabin alongside you. If you must travel on a plane with a larger dog, you’ll want to be extra thoughtful of their comfort underneath the plane. This will include a USDA-approved shipping crate that is large enough for your dog to move around in. You should line it with some cozy bedding and ensure the dog has access to water during their trip—especially if it is going to be hot outside. For both airborne scenarios, big and small, try to book a direct flight. This reduces the risk of either size dog facing too much stress for long hours.
If you and your pet are headed on a road trip, you may want to prep them for riding in the car by taking them on a few short and positive rides to get them used to the motions. Consider a drive down to a pet-friendly beach to throw the ball around. Once they realize the car means that they may get to splash in the waves and dig in the sand, they’ll be much calmer in the future. For the actual day of travel, make sure you bring along a pet travel kit. They’ll need their necessities like food, snacks, and plenty of water. If you plan on the trip being extra-long, bring waste baggies too. You will probably need to stop and take your dog on plenty of walks so they can stretch their legs—you’ll enjoy the scenery too!
With the right amount of preparation, it will feel like the paw-fect vacation for both you and your fluffy pal.

–  By Olivia Dimatteo, blog contributor for Garden City Realty

When planning a trip with your dog, take some time to prepare ahead of time. There are several questions you may need answers to such as what hotels/rentals allow dogs, how do I prepare for the drive, where will I stop along the way and more. By planning ahead you are prepared for anything that may happen during your trip. Plus, how convenient is it to be familiar with things you are able to go in case plans change! Heading to a certain part of town and remember you had found a dog park in the area? Good thing you researched ahead of time. 

The first rule of thumb is to plan the destination and find dog-friendly lodging accommodations. At Garden City Realty we offer a selection of Dog-Friendly rental homes to choose from. Several companies may need paperwork ahead of time or will feature certain restrictions. Make sure to review the pet policy for any lodging company you are considering to avoid any issues at check-in. 
After confirming the lodging, it is a good idea to plan ahead and research dog-friendly restaurants, activities, dog parks, emergency vets, and anything you feel you may need access to during your stay. petfriendlytravel.com, and are all great sources to begin your search! 
To make the trip as comfortable as possible, prepare your vehicle with the recommended dog travel items. Adding a car harness not improves safety in case of an accident, but is also a preventative from having your furry friend try to jump into your lap while driving. You may also look into purchasing a dog car bed, car seat cover, a dog water bottle, and more. To stay organized, preparing a designated bag to place your dog’s items in to keep it all in one place, after all, they are our fur babies. 
During your trip you will want to try your best to keep your dog to their normal eating, resting, and exercising habits as this will help decrease travel anxiety. When traveling to your destination or back home consider stopping at a rest stop and walking your dog around so he can get in his standard exercise.  
Traveling with your dog should be fun and create lasting memories. Take the time to plan ahead to make it great for yourself and your dog!

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