Monday, June 07, 2010

Summer Pet Tips: Vacationing

When planning your vacation it will be necessary to decide on your pet’s care and whether to leave your pet or take him along. Your pet’s personality and the length and distance of your trip are important things to consider when making your decision.

Not Taking Your Pet Along:

Boarding your pet or hiring a pet sitter are options if you decide to leave your pet behind. In either case, here are some general tips.

- Ask your vet or other pet owners for recommendations of reputable boarding facilities or pet sitters.
- If boarding, visit the facility to meet the staff and to check the safety and cleanliness of the operation. If hiring a pet sitter, meet him/her in your home to see how he/she and your pet interact.
- Make reservations well in advance of your trip, especially during holidays, for facilities fill up quickly.
- Be sure your pet is current on all vaccines required.
- If your pet is on medication, be sure to leave an ample supply and clear instructions.
- Leave an ample supply of food and complete feeding instructions. Also, discuss your pet’s regular exercise and potty routines.
- Make sure your pet is wearing a collar with identification tags; make sure cats have safety collars on.
- Leave information on your vet’s office and emergency numbers.
- Also, leave a phone number where you can be reached.

Taking Your Pet Along:

- Call ahead to be sure your pet will be welcome at the hotels, motels, homes and/or parks where you will be staying and visiting.
- Be sure your pet has all required vaccines and a current health certificate. Be sure to take along his medical records as an extra measure.
- It is also a good idea to know where a few local vet office are located near where you will be vacationing, in case of an emergency.
- Take along your pet’s regular food, a supply of water if needed, any medications, and if there is room his favorite bedding and toys.
- Be sure your pet has a collar with an ID tag with your name and telephone number on it. It also helps to carry a photo of your pet in case he is lost while traveling.
- Be sure to keep your pet leashed and/or caged/confined at all times. New smells and surroundings entice pets to wonder.
- If traveling in a vehicle with your pet, it is safest for you and your pet to keep him confined to a carrier. Never let your pet ride in the back of a truck.

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