Vetstreet. All rights reserved.
Vetstreet does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. See Additional Information ›
As a veterinarian with 20-plus years of experience roaming the States with pets in tow, you’d think I’d have the traveling thing down. Yet every single time I take my pets anywhere outside my hometown in South Florida, I’m forced to confront some new (and often annoying) aspect of pet travel I’d somehow missed during the 50-plus trips that preceded it.
My last expedition serves as a perfect example:
I flew from Miami to Arizona with my French Bulldog, Vincent, for a speaking engagement.
After spending the night at a fancy pet-friendly resort, we flew to Washington, D.C., where Vincent and I met up with my significant other and our Belgian Malinois pup, Violet. They’d just driven up from Miami to help me enjoy three days of BlogPaws, a social media conference for the pet set. There we spent our nights in a ninth-floor hotel room (near the elevator, thank God) and our days in a conference booth promoting my Fat Dog Diet iPhone app.
After the conference, we shared a leisurely drive back to Miami with Vincent and Violet sleeping peacefully (mostly, anyway) in the back of my SUV.
As a mixed media marathon experience in pet travel, this particular trip was extra-illuminating on the things-I-never-knew-about-pet-travel front. After all, it’s only fair for you to learn about the things no one ever talks about in all those supremely unhelpful pet travel websites.
So here it is, fodder for your upcoming summer travels:
1. The first time is always the worst. So always plan a short trip first. I know plenty of people who refuse to travel with their pets after having suffered a stressful time their first time out. But that’s only to be expected. As long as it wasn’t a complete fiasco and your dog has a generally sound temperament, it’s probably a good idea to try again. Just be sure to make it a shorter trip the next time out, and stop somewhere fun, like the dog park.
2. Traveling with a puppy is a double-edged sword. As you might expect, puppies can make for some tough traveling experiences. Consider: separation anxiety, housebreaking issues and all that chewing! Despite the drawbacks, traveling with a pup offers plenty to recommend it. After all, how best to socialize a pet to the rigors of travel than to expose her to them early?
(Just be sure to bring along a powerful array of floor cleaners!)
Like this article? Have a point of view to share? Let us know!
Take our breed quiz to find your next pet.
Get all the best pet news and information sent right to your inbox!
Thank you for subscribing!
From offering treats to keeping dog
shampoo out of your pup's eyes, here are
six ways to make bath time less…
Do you think dogs show guilt when they
misbehave or chew up your favorite
things to punish you? You heard wrong.
You usually don't need to worry about this
behavior, but sometimes it can indicate a
medical issue or anxiety…
The wavy-coated Cornish Rex might not be able to speak English, but she knows how to get her point across.
Parasites are no fun for dogs. Learn how
to protect your canine from heartworms,
hookworms, whipworms and more.
Check out our collection of more than 250 videos about pet training, animal behavior, dog and cat breeds and more.
Wonder which dog or cat best fits your lifestyle? Our new tool will narrow down more than 300 breeds for you.
If the video doesn't start playing momentarily,
please install the latest version of Flash.
Thank you for subscribing.