Have you had dreams about going on a road trip? Right now, the allure of the open road is particularly alluring, but longer road trips in a car with your dog can be difficult and enjoyable. Dogs can become restless and exhibit unsafe behaviors, such as hanging out the window or jumping into your lap while driving down the highway.
Adding worries about the coronavirus epidemic makes a relaxing road trip seem perhaps a little problematic. How can you ensure that you and your dog remain secure and content when traveling for extended periods? We compiled the best advice from professionals about traveling with your dog. Do not go without these!
1. Create a path that is animal-friendly.
When traveling by car with your dog, you must consider their requirements, including stopping for toilet breaks and exercise. Verify that the route you choose has plenty of places where your pet can walk around safely. According to Dana Vachon, CPDT-KA, a dog trainer at Philly Unleashed Dog Training, “most significant rest stations include dog spaces for them to go to the toilet, stretch their legs, and play. Dr. Lin Chen, director of the Mount Auburn Hospital Travel Medicine Center in Cambridge, Massachusetts, advises considering COVID-19 precautions as you make your plans.
Avoid traveling through congested areas or areas where it would not be easy to keep a 6-foot space between you and another person. Additionally, you should keep your dog six feet away from other people. As a general rule, she advises treating dogs as family members. Also, be cautious while deciding where you want to go. Dr. Chen reminds out that “states have varying amounts of the virus” and “some states have varying degrees of quarantine guidelines.
For instance, some places demand that individuals hide their faces in public, while others do not. Consider your options carefully and choose a location with a low COVID-19 prevalence, even though the local environment is constantly changing. In addition to the travel advice from the CDC, be prepared to abide by the safety recommendations made by local and state authorities.
2. Make practice excursions before the vacation.
If you know your dog has significant anxiety when riding in the automobile, you may want to attempt behavioral training methods. Take a few small trial excursions with your dog that result in enjoyable experiences before embarking on a lengthy road journey, advises Vachon. Driving will become associated with more good memories if you take trips to your favorite pet shop or dog park, for instance. Don’t only use your vehicle trips to go to the vet, in other words!
3. Consult your veterinarian.
Is your pet in good health to travel? Without consulting your veterinarian, you won’t be able to be certain. Dr. Katy Nelson, DVM, of the Belle Haven Animal Medical Centre in Alexandria, Virginia, recommends owners of dogs with pre-existing health conditions inquire about how travel may impact them and ensure their dogs are current on their vaccinations and flea and tick preventatives. Asking your veterinarian about nausea-relieving or stress-relieving tools and Zetpo nails caps to avoid scratches that can benefit your pet while you’re driving is another chance to do so (more on that later).
4. Take just the necessities.
It’s always a good idea to bring your pet’s requirements when you travel, but now more than ever. To reduce your chance of getting the virus in supermarkets and veterinary offices, which may be crowded settings, Dr. Chen advises packing your pet’s food and water, treats, medications, toys, feeding bowls, and other supplies.
To ensure that everything can be disposed of correctly, she advises remembering to pack tools for picking up pet waste. And don’t forget to include your COVID-19 safety necessities! Even if you don’t anticipate seeing many people, Dr. Chen advises carrying masks and hand sanitizer nearby in the vehicle just in case. Dr. Nelson advises cleaning pet feet and hair using pet grooming wipes.
5. Keep your dog and automobile safe.
The safety of your dog comes first while traveling by car with them. Vachon advises utilizing a hammock or dog sling in the back seat to provide your traveling companion with a secure and cozy area. These accessories may protect your pet while driving and prevent hair and claw marks on your vehicle’s upholstery. The Frisco Water-Resistant Hammock Car Seat Cover prevents spills from getting on your seats and is also machine-washable in case of larger messes.
Smaller animals may have a better view out the window while being safe and secure in a car seat like the HDP Deluxe Lookout Dog, Cat & Small Animal Booster Car Seat. In any case, keeping your vehicle secure will let you focus on the road rather than glancing behind to ensure your dog isn’t gnawing on the armrest, which keeps both of you safe.
obey CDC recommendations.
Following the COVID-19 safety recommendations from the CDC can help keep you safe no matter where you are or where you are going. Its suggestions include keeping a 6-foot buffer between you and other people, including their dogs. Don a face mask made of fabric. often wash your hands. Do not touch your lips, nose, or eyes.
Keep in mind that you are taking safety measures not just for yourself but also for your dog. They need your health as well! Each road journey starts with preparation. You map out your route, prepare a list of what to bring, pack your go-to roadside munchies, and create the ideal road trip music. Remember to account for your dog’s requirements when you plan your next road trip with them. Travel safely!