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Preparing Pets For Travel And Adventure

What could be better than an adventure with man’s best friend? If you’ve decided to pack the car, suitcase, or RV with your furry friend, there are a few things you should know before you go. Our pets don’t need much, but these tips will help keep your pet safe, happy, and healthy.

Research The Risks To Your Pet In Your Destination Of Choice

Different climates hold different health risks for your pets. For example, Southern California shores pose a definite flea risk for both cats and dogs, whereas ticks are a much bigger concern in the Rocky Mountains, and heart-worm is prevalent near the Gulf Coast. Once you know what your pet could face in your chosen climate, call your vet, make sure your pup or cat is up to date on their vaccines and explore preventative options for these risks.

southern california sunset

If You’re Flying With Your Pet, Consider Their Anxiety

Most pets are not used to being on an airplane or in an airport, this can send them into a serious state of anxiety. If you have a pet prone to anxiety, consider a calming option before you head to the airport. CBD treats work wonders to keep a calm pet, as can medications from your vet. It’s important to get them to exercise before a flight, this will help them wind down quickly. Airport pet relief stations are handy, but not ideal. The most important thing before walking into an airport is making sure your pet relieves itself as close to flight time as possible. Avoid food and water five hours before your flight. Small amounts of water are fine, but the last thing you want to deal with is cleaning up dog pee off an airport floor or inside a pet carrier.

airport terminal boarding airplane

Pack For Your Pet As You Would Pack For Yourself

Need food, water, shelter, medications? So do our furry friends. A good way of keeping track of your pet’s belongings is to get yourself a pet bag, especially for all the things they need. It’s always better to be over than under-prepared in this situation.  If an outdoor adventure is ahead, your local outdoor superstores are sure to have packable options for pets. Here are a few things to pack for your best friend. 

  • Collapsible eco-friendly water and food bowls, accompanied by at least four extra days of water and food
  • Towel
  • Pet life jacket
  • Packable pet snacks for quick fuel
  • LED light-up collar
  • Long leash
  • Eco-friendly poop bags
  • Pet first-aid kit
  • Any medications your pet requires
  • Any type shade provider
  • Tweezers for unexpected plant or animal encounters
  • Pet-friendly sunscreens or protective clothing
  • Pet harness

Get Your Pet Comfortable With Daily Full-body Inspections

While adventuring with our pets, these daily inspections are vital. This means head to toe, in between toes, under the tail, and inside the ears. An unsuspected harm to our pets are foxtails. Sure, these plants look harmless, but can quickly become dangerous. Foxtails are easily picked up in our pet’s fur, and they slowly embed their way into dog and cat paws, noses, and ears. This is a very quick way to end up with an infection or worse. Daily inspections not only keep harmful foxtails away but help you catch ticks, too. The pesky bugs thrive on our pets, this is why preventative measures and inspections are so important in protecting their health.

how to protect your dog from foxtails

Invest In A GPS Tracker And ID Tag

The worst thing you could imagine while traveling with your pet is losing them. Do not leave your home without a tag with your information attached to their collar. Better yet, get a GPS tag to also attach to their collar. You’ll find many options for GPS trackers with a quick search, but another excellent option not marketed for pets is the Apple AirTag. Not only is the AirTag incredibly cost efficient, the battery is designed to last a full year, and once you turn on lost mode, you’ll receive address updates every time your pet comes within Bluetooth range of a compatible phone. Check out this test on AirTags for pets.

Plan Then Prepare

Different types of adventure require different types of preparation. If you know you’re taking your pet somewhere they’ll be hiking for long hours, try to spend time everyday preparing them. It’s as simple as taking them on a 20 minute uphill walk in your neighborhood, something is better than nothing. They need stamina as much as you do. If you’re headed somewhere they’ll be spending time in a body of water, get them comfortable with water, even if that means doing so in your bathtub at home.

dog hiking

There’s no bonding experience like adventure with your pet. Remember they rely on you and although they’re probably just happy to be joining you, their safety depends on their #1, aka you. As always, knowing before you go is a surefire way to your next best adventure.