Traveling with Your Pets

Bjorn Koch Travel PetsHomesickness can surely put a damper on any vacation, whether you’re across the country, across the city or across the world. You miss the comfort of your own bed, the smell that only your house has, and of course, your pets.


Traveling without your pets can be heartbreaking, and not just for you. Of course you miss giving your furry, four-legged friends all the love and affection that they deserve and have become accustomed to. But the pain can be just as bad for your pets as it is for you. Instead of feeling guilty for leaving them behind and dealing with the thoughts of abandonment, bring them along.


Whether or not you pack Fido away will depend largely on where you’re heading, and for how long.


A day trip to the beach or an overnight camping trip are ideal for bringing your dog along.

Transportation in these cases is easy–depending on how large or small he or she is, you can let your dog sit in the back seat of your car and stick its head out of the window for the ride. If it’s a smaller dog (or a cat), a crate is an easy, safe and much cleaner way to transport your pet for car rides.


However, it’s important to take safety precautions when traveling with your pet in the back (or front) seat. By sticking its head out of the window, your dog is at risk of being pelted with insects or other debris at fairly high speeds. And, while it’s an oft-forgotten risk, dogs can fall (or jump) out of a window left too wide open.


Shorter, more outdoorsy trips like the beach, camping or hiking can be enormously fun for you and your pet; they allow you to bring them along but not feel as though they’re an extra chore or a nuisance for the duration.


If you’re going on a slightly longer trip somewhere further from home and you’d rather not pay a sitter or put your dog in a cage at the vet for a week or two, bringing him or her on your flight is a fairly simple process. Even though the process is a fairly straightforward one, it’s important to make sure you’re going to cover all the bases when it comes to getting your pet on board a flight.


First, try to book a direct flight if at all possible–avoiding layovers means less time your pet spends inside the cage in the cargo area of the plane, and less time that the crate will be moved around, transported and potentially mishandled or dropped during the switch over. The ASPCA also recommends buying a USDA approved carrying crate which, above all else, should be properly labeled. Should your pet wriggle its way out of the cage, the cage get lost or misplaced, ensuring everything is labeled with the pet’s name, your name, and some contact info could be the difference between reunited you and your fuzzy friend quickly and safely.


But, once you’ve arrived at your destination with your dog (or cat) in tow, let the fun begin. To find out some pet-friendly attractions and destinations, visit