Labor day can be a great time to travel with your pet. Whether you’re jetting away for the weekend, going for a road trip, or just taking a camping trip, there are a lot of things to consider when it comes to your pet. Here are a few things to keep in mind so you can have the best getaway with your furry friend:

  1. Stay Healthy! Ensure your pet is up to date on all vaccinations before you hit the road. If there are any diseases prevalent where you’re going, make sure your pet is adequately protected. For example: heartworm is much more common in the American Southeast than the Pacific Northwest, so check with your veterinarian for a recommendation on proper treatment plans and vet hospitals in your area of travel!

  2. Keep Them Comfortable! It’s important to make sure your pet feels comfortable when you’re on the move. Travel with their normal food, bedding, and toys from home. Having these familiar pieces of home will keep your pet at ease in new locations.

  3. Plan Accordingly! It’s always good to plan your travel route according your pet’s needs. If traveling by car, you need to budget time for potty and play breaks. You should never let your small pet ride in the front seat if there are airbags installed. It may sound like a pain, but smaller dogs and cats should be placed in a carrier secured with a seat belt. There are a lot of great options out there for carriers designed with road travel in mind, they have features that keep your pets comfortable and safe in the case of an accident.

  4. Avoid Disease! You never want to see your pet get sick, especially on vacation. Avoid rest areas and public dog parks during bathroom breaks. These places have a lot of dogs pass through, and the risk of disease is much higher. Be wary of letting your dog get too close, especially nose to nose, with dogs you don’t know.

  5. Consider Medications! If your pet is an anxious traveller, consider talking to your veterinarian about medications to help. There are excellent medications that can decrease pet anxiety on planes, cars, or in new destinations in general. Just remember to check with your veterinarian before you give your dog or cat any new medication.

  6. No Truck Beds! It’s common to see dogs traveling in truck beds. But this isn’t very safe for your pet. Never put your pet in the back of the truck when you travel. It’s very easy for them to fall out and things like loose dust particles can cause serious damage to their eyes.

Of course, if you’re planning to do a lot of traveling and are worried about your pet’s well-being, it’s always a good option to look into boarding while you go out of town. When checking out boarding facilities, look for one with 24/7 monitoring and veterinary support. Be sure to ask for a tour and see where your pet would be staying!

I hope you have a great and safe Labor Day weekend, whether you’re traveling or having a great stay at home!