Roadtrips offer popular vacation alternatives for anyone wanting to travel freely, see numerous places and save some money. They are also great choices for traveling with a pet. A family roadtrip requires a lot of planning, especially when bringing along a four legged friend.
Chart Your Course
Arguably, a roadtripper should already have a route and a destination in mind. Traveling with dogs or cats should cause you to take that road plan one step further. Look for safe, pet-friendly places where you can stop. Plan for walks and potty breaks, preferably in places where your pet can truly stretch. Good options might be dog parks or rest stops.
Safety and Security
Pets should always be carefully watched when away from home. Even pets that are accustomed to walking without a leash must be tethered to their owner any time they are outside of the vehicle. An animal can react unexpectedly when placed in unfamiliar environments. It is not uncommon for dogs to run away simply because they are scared or confused. This may lead to them becoming lost or injured. Likewise, an animal that is scared of strangers may suddenly lash out.
Food and Water
A roadtrip is not complete without a well-packed ice chest. You will need plenty of food and snacks for the road for you and your pets. Bring along enough bottled water for the bulk of the trip as well as a collapsible water dish. Don’t forget food, treats and other comfort items that may help your dog or cat to feel at ease when in the car or while taking a break outside.
You may wish to stop at hotels, restaurants, amusement parks or any number of spots that make vacations fun. A bit of advance research will tell you which of these places allow pets and in what capacity. Many hotels allow furry companions on the premises with a deposit. Restaurants often allow well-behaved animals in any outdoor seating areas. Amusement parks may have pet care options onsite. National parks sometimes have areas that are specifically geared toward traveling with animals. All of this information should be easy to find by visiting the site’s webpage in advance or giving them a call.
Non Pet-Friendly Locations
There may be times on your road trip when you need to enter a location where your pet isn’t allowed. This might be a stop at a shop, service station, museum or an indoor restaurant. When all other options are exhausted, you may have to settle for a space where you cannot be accompanied by your pet. Though not ideal, there are ways to make this work. Safety is paramount. Do not leave a dog or cat alone in a car for more than two or three minutes. Any longer than that and their safety is greatly impaired. In hotter weather, animals can quickly overheat. In cooler weather, hypothermia may set in. Instead, look for boarding facilities that will take your pet by the hour. These are sometimes available in popular tourist locations. Another option is to take turns staying with your pet with other members of your party.
Traveling with Cats
Felines rarely accompany their families on vacations, simply because they are extreme creatures of habit who are often happiest at home. Still, if you do intend on taking your cat with you, keep in mind that he or she is likely to either run and/or hide in a strange location. Keep your pet crate handy, offer plenty of treats or favorite toys and never force your cat into a situation in which he or she is uncomfortable.
Not sure about going on a roadtrip with your family friend? Consider boarding while you are gone. Fon Jon Pet Care offers boarding for pets of all sizes. Our boarding facility is a home away from home for first-time visitors and long-term clients. Give us a call to find out more about our pet boarding facility.