On the Road with Your Dog

Whether you're taking a short day-trip or a month-long trek around the country, pets can make excellent traveling companions. Here are some tips that will make the trip more pleasant for both you and your dog:

On the Road

Get a health certificate and proper ID. Take your pet for a veterinary check-up and make sure you have a certificate stating that your pet's shots are up to date. Several states require these certificates, especially for rabies. Also, be certain that your pet has a sturdy collar with two pieces of identification, including a number where you can be reached. You may want to consider microchipping your pet.

Get Your Pet Used to the Car

If your pet isn't used to the car, start taking some short trips and gradually build up to longer and longer trips. Not all pets like to travel. If your pets experience carsickness, try getting them accustomed to the car when it's not running. Your veterinarian can also prescribe medicine that will help with carsickness.

Get Hotel/Motel Accommodations in Advance

Be sure your pets are welcome in the hotel or motel where you're staying.

Through the Air

Get health certificates and identification. All airlines require health certificates for pet travel. Visit your veterinarian well in advance of a plane trip. Your veterinarian may recommend a tranquilizer for your pet when traveling. A sturdy collar with two pieces of identification is also essential. Be sure the collar has a number on it where you can be contacted.

Be Aware of Airline Procedures

Different airlines have different procedures for transporting pets. You need to know where to drop off and pick up your pet and how much extra time to plan for. Be certain to find this out well in advance, especially if you're traveling internationally. Also, find out the requirements of your pet's traveling kennel and how to handle feeding.