There are plenty of ways to show our pets how much we love them — we buy them special food and treats, bring home the newest toys and, of course, lavish them with affection. Caroline Golon, the human behind popular humor blog Romeo the Cat, will share the stories of pet owners who have gone the extra mile for their pets in this series, The Things We Do for Love. And sometimes, the extra mile is only the beginning!

Diane Silver of Atlanta, Ga., rarely does anything without her fluffy Havanese, Cosmo, by her side. That includes visiting the Colosseum in Rome, touring Lake Como, strolling the streets of Venice and snowshoeing in Trentino, Italy.

“The first time we went abroad, I was apprehensive,” Silver says. “There were a lot of hoops to jump through, and it seemed very complicated. I just didn’t know what to expect.”

But, determined not to let Cosmo miss out on the Italian fun, Silver went through the tedious process of planning a European vacation with her best buddy.  

Getting Prepped

Silver says her vet was the best source of information and preparation for the trip.

“We really had to get ready in advance,” Silver says. “It can take up to six months, and for the UK, even longer.”

Preparation for the journey included several vet visits to fill out paperwork. The trip required a "bilingual certificate," a health certificate signed by a licensed, USDA-accredited veterinarian within 10 days of travel, verifying Cosmo’s microchip number and rabies information.

And even before they left for Italy, Silver and Cosmo's vet had to put together paperwork for the trip home. Coming back into the United States required a certificate of vaccination form that Cosmo’s vet filled out before the trip.

Setting Priorities

While planning the trip, Silver researched airline policies to ensure Cosmo could fly in the cabin with her. When she found the right airline, there was no shopping around for prices — that’s the one she chose.

As the trip drew closer, Silver packed for Cosmo. Being out of the country and not near her regular retailer required that she bring all of Cosmo’s food with them.

Silver also packed Cosmo’s chews, toys, bowls, poop bags and his stylish lime green jacket and matching leash.

Communicating With the Locals

While Silver doesn’t speak Italian, she says it seemed that the language of “dog” was a universal icebreaker. “Italy is very dog friendly,” Silver says. “Most restaurants and hotels allow dogs inside. And, while museums and libraries have a ‘no dogs’ policy, there were plenty of beautiful places we could visit outside!”

Was all the hassle to bring Cosmo with her worth it?

“Absolutely!” Silver says. “Cosmo is the kind of dog who wants to come along, so it’s fun to travel with him and make him part of the experience.”

What do you do for love? We’re looking for the funny, sweet and special stories that will make other pet parents smile. Email us at [email protected] to share your story. Please put "The Things We Do for Love" in the subject line.