How to travel with a pet

Whether you are travelling abroad or staying at home, pets often accompany their owners everywhere they go. They provide companionship, entertainment and unconditional love. In fact, according to the American Pet Products Association, nearly 80% of adults consider their animals to be part of the family. When choosing a destination for a trip, pets are just as important as children during the selection phase. Travelling with your pet requires preparation. The very first step is to research the laws regarding bringing pets into countries where you plan to visit. In addition to local regulations, it’s also important to have your animal checked by a veterinarian at least two weeks before departure. Let’s see below how one can travel with a pet.

 Choose a good pet carrier that will fit comfortably inside your luggage

 You should think about size, weight and materials. It needs to be sturdy enough to protect your pet from the elements while preventing damage to your belongings. If travelling between flights, opt for an air-cushioned crate rather than a hard plastic kennel because this gives your pet more comfort and protection. Make sure that your carrier or crate has handles so that you can transport it in a taxi or other vehicle without assistance.

Decide on what type of pet you want to take along

A cat? A dog? An aquarium? Your choice depends largely upon the number of days you intend to stay away. If you’ll be gone only a few days, choose something small that can easily nestle beneath your seat. On the other hand, if you’re planning to spend several months away, get yourself a larger container for your big pet.

Consider whether you want to board your pet before leaving or bring them along when you arrive

 Boarding services usually charge per day; however, most airlines allow up to 30 days of continuous boarding service. This means that if you need to leave for five days but return on the sixth, the airline will still charge for the full month (assuming no changes were made to your itinerary). Bring along your pet when you depart from the airport and drop them off at the same place when you return. Most travellers prefer to do these arrangements themselves because this way they have control over who takes care of the pet and who pays for any boarding expenses. Travellers also find that they can have a lot of fun with their friends’ pets – especially if they live close by.

Determine where you will store your container

 If you decide to keep your pet in the cabin itself, make sure that there is room for both of you in the space provided. Also, ensure that the floor area of the aircraft has been covered with absorbent material such as rubber mats or towels to prevent injuries due to slipping.

buy travel insurance

 Pets can cause considerable damage to a household if left unattended. As well, they are prone to getting sick and injured when travelling. For example, many airlines prohibit the carrying of fish tanks onboard. Therefore, if you’re planning on taking your pet with you, purchase travel insurance just like you would for your family members.

Think about feeding your pet during your trip

Some airlines allow you to feed your companion animals using special meals. However, remember that many airlines require all food to be sealed in bags; therefore, carry some dry food in case your pet gets hungry during long layovers.

Find out what vaccinations your pet requires

 Depending on the country you’ll be visiting, certain inoculations may not be required and others may even be prohibited. Contact your vet to determine whether your pet is adequately protected against rabies, distemper, parvovirus or hepatitis depending on which countries you’ll be passing through.

In conclusion, bringing your beloved friend along with you on holiday or business trips is one of life’s great pleasures. Just remember that pets need extra attention and care when flying so don’t forget to put everything in writing.

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