Summer is here. For many families, that means gassing up the vehicle and hitting the open road. It is a time for making memories and finding adventure. If you intend to bring the furry family members along, there are some steps we suggest you take to ensure everyone has a safe and enjoyable trip. Paws Up Inc. is here to help with the tips you need:
Practice Ahead of Time
It is overwhelming for an animal to go from rarely being in the car to taking a long trip. Take your pet on several shorter car rides. Think about a runner preparing for a marathon. They start small and work their way up. Start your pet with just a few minutes in your vehicle and gradually increase until the actual trip. This will help them become acclimated to being in the car. It will be worth it when you are not dealing with car sickness.
Pack A Pet Kit
If you have kids, you probably pack specific items to try and anticipate their needs. Pets are not much different. When planning for the trip, make a list of everything you think your pet might need. We suggest food and water, bowls, leash, plastic bags, something to scoop with, and any medication they take. Put all of this in one bag that is easily accessible in your vehicle. That way, you’re not having to go through all your luggage on breaks.
The ASPCA recommends that pets travel in a well-ventilated crate, even when in your car. This ensures that they do not move around. The crate should be big enough that they can sit, stand, and lie down comfortably. It should be secured to the seat in the event of an abrupt stop. If you choose not to use a crate, a harness that works with your seat belts is also good. In either case, pets should always be in the back seat.
Just like humans, dogs need to stretch their legs and use the bathroom periodically. If you are on a long trip, be sure and let him or her out every couple of hours. Always keep your dog on a leash during bathroom breaks. Extra vigilance should be paid to traffic; cars are constantly going in and out of gas stations and rest stops. Remember to give your pup some water.
Don’t Leave Your Pet Alone
It may seem harmless to leave your pet alone in your vehicle for just a few minutes. In fact, it is dangerous and not worth the risk. It does not take long at all for a car to heat up and for heat exhaustion to set in. The stress of being alone only complicates things. Even if you leave the air-conditioner on, you run the risk of your baby being stolen. The best option is for your family to take turns, leaving the car so someone is always with your pet.
Paws Up Inc Pet Sitting and Dog Walking hopes you have a fantastic summer. Enjoy the company of your loved ones, both the two-legged and four-legged. Keep these travel tips in mind when going on a trip. If you decide to leave the pets at home, please give us a call. We would love to spend time with them. Please continue to follow our blog for more great pet tips.