There are two things you can never forget at home when traveling: your pets and your children (unless we’re talking about Home Alone). Your passport ranks a close third if you’re setting off on an international voyage. Anything else is replaceable.
Whether you’re moving to a new city or embarking on a month-long road trip, you’ll want to do more than just remember your fur babies.
You’ll want to be prepared to travel safely with them. Here are five tips for doing just that.
#1 Bring Important Documents
If your animal gets into any trouble on the road or while away from home, you’ll need to have relevant information on hand to give to a new veterinarian. Depending on how and where you’re traveling, airport security or other officers may ask you for specific papers as well. Here are a few records and forms you should make copies of, just in case:
- Medical history, including previous vaccinations and known allergies
- Detailed information regarding any medications they currently take
- Specific documents required by the state, such as a Certificate of Veterinary Inspection, or an EU passport if traveling abroad
A collar and ID tag is a good start, but for greater chances at reunification and better peace of mind, install the HomeAgain microchip—safe, permanent, and smaller than a grain of rice—under your pet’s skin.
90% of pets without identification never reunite with their families. With all the chaos of summer travel, your pet might get startled and run off, but this technology makes the unthinkable much more manageable.
#3 Reduce Anxiety
When you place your animals in their crates for long periods of time, they don’t understand what’s happening. They’re in a small, contained space with no idea where they’re going. If someone did that to you, you’d be downright terrified.
Luckily, there are ways to alleviate their feelings of claustrophobia and anxiety:
- Limit food and drink intake – Don’t give your pet too much to eat or drink in the hours leading up to your trip. This will help reduce anxiety and prevent nausea and vomiting—which is a pain for both them and you.
- Final bout of exercise – Right before embarking on your journey, squeeze in a good 20 minutes of exercise to destress and tire them out. Take your dog for a quick walk or play a game of fetch. This is a little more awkward with cats, but you can still put a leash on them and do a few laps around the backyard or parking lot (just ignore all the questioning looks).
- Cannabidiol treats – In the same way that it relieves stress for humans, one dose of a CBDfx pet tincture should calm your animal’s nerves and make them less frightened by sudden noises or movement.
#4 Acquaint Your Pet with The Car
If you’ve never traveled with your pet before, they probably don’t spend a whole lot of time in the car. And when you do take them somewhere by car, where are you most likely going?
The vet, the groomers, or the dentist. Super fun places where pet dreams come true.
Take your pup somewhere exciting in the car, like their favorite park or a dog beach if they like to swim. You can find excellent options in your area by using Dog Park Finder Plus.
Your animal will begin to form new, positive associations with a car ride, which will make them less resistant to climbing back in after each rest stop. It might take some time to undo the trauma of their most recent teeth cleaning, but you can get them there eventually.
#5 Proper Crate or Carrier
Your travel carrier should be big enough for your pet to sit, lay down, stand up, and turn around in—basically, everything required for a standard game of Simon Says.
Invest in a Sleepypod pet carrier to give your animal a comfortable experience without sacrificing their safety. The Sleepypod performs triple-duty as a carrier, cozy bed, and car seat, so you can transition easily from truck to plane to train and back again.
Load Up and Head Out
Traveling is amazing, but there’s a lot to think about. Did I pack enough underwear? Will my carry-on fit in the overhead bin? How can I travel sustainably in an unfamiliar city?
With these helpful tips, you’ll have one less question on your mind. With your pets in their car seat carriers, snoozing happily from the CBD treat, you’ll almost forget they’re there—but seriously, don’t forget they’re there.