Travelling with your Pet

Hey McLean Community, it is summer! The weather is nice and it seems like everyone is out and about with their pets.

If you are like me, your pets are family and that means family vacations sometimes include them too. Our last family trip to Washington, DC found my little beagle monkeys in the backseat for a ride to America’s capital.  There are a few things you can do of course, to make this easier on them and you.

Know your pet, if your pet hates the car and doesn’t do well in new places it might be best to leave them with family or board them until you are back. Make sure you have all your pets’ documentation up to date as well as vaccines. If you are crossing the border you will need at the very least an up to date rabies vaccine. It’s a great idea to have your pet microchipped, and put a name tag on them with your number on it. Losing them in a strange place will not only ruin your vacation it will also be very stressful trying to locate them in a different city. A microchip is the first thing animal service workers look for in a stray dog, or cat. Look up the closest emergency veterinarian to where you are going and program it into your GPS, this will save time if something happens. In addition, take along a pet first aid kit. Check out a pet store and pick up something to anchor your pet to the car, either a seatbelt or a crate. This is the safest way for your pet to travel. You can also get a spill proof water bowl so they have access to fresh water at all times.  This goes without saying but NEVER leave your pet in a hot car, the temperature rises so fast and it’s so dangerous.

Make sure you check ahead with all the places you will be going, hotels, attractions, and anywhere else you will be taking in the sights. This will help you plan better as you will know if they allow pets or if there are accommodations for them. For example, the hotel we stayed at in Washington had the fluffiest amazing doggie beds, our little Lillie loved it! And it made me happy knowing she was comfy. There are also several locations such as African Lion Safari that have a covered kennel for your dog while you take in the sights. Websites like Trip Advisor and are great resources to find places that will allow your pets to enjoy attractions and even some dining with you. Imagine whale watching with your dog! Travelling with your pets can be fun if you are prepared.

Next stop New York City, Lillie wants to see Times Square.

by Marion Cummings, CCR