Home TIPS Sensible Tips: Travel With Pets On Holiday Weekends
Sensible Tips: Travel With Pets On Holiday Weekends PDF Print E-mail

The experience can be very stressful for both you and your best friend. The hurry-up activities, strange sights, brilliant lights, loud noises and unfamiliar people can disturb a pet used to familiar, quiet routines at home. With intelligent planning and consideration for all involved, there are ways to make the trip easier to endure.

1. If you're planning to fly, consider leaving your pet home. Have a friend or relative take care of it, or board it in a kennel. It’s frightening and stressful to fly is as a caged animal in cargo. Despite the care airlines take to keep animals safe, the ordeal is never a pleasant one for pets nor anxious owners. If you check your pet as luggage, cost may be as much as $150 per flight. It must be in an approved, lockable container with proper bowls for water and food.

2. You're usually permitted to fly with a pet weighing 20 pounds or less into the passenger cabin with you. It must stay in an approved carry-on container throughout the flight, although some airlines allow brief periods for feeding and exercise. The cost may be $100. Service dogs with IDs fly free in the passenger cabin.

3. If driving, it will be more pleasant for your pet. The car is already a familiar place, and the pet is comfortable with family members. Take along feed and water bowls, mat or blanket and favorite toys.

If the driving trip will last more than two hours, make regular stops for feeding, potty breaks and exercise. At all times, keep your pet on a leash.

4. If your holiday journey will involve overnight stops, call ahead to book a motel that accepts pets. Some will allow them to stay in your room, while others require them to be housed in kennels on motel property. Obey the rules for clean up after your pet, and respect the quiet comfort of other motel guests.

5. If your pet tends to be nervous and restless, take vet-approved meds on your journey. To allow regular sleep for the pet and everyone else on the trip, use the meds when necessary. Throughout, give your pet as much freedom and exercise as possible. Soothing talk and petting can also help make the experience less stressful for all.

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