Tips for Safely Traveling With Pets
With the holidays coming up, you may be preparing for a road trip with the family. We know many families have a four-legged member that just can’t be left behind and included in road trips as an equal party. Hitting the road with your pets can be a lot of fun and save the expense of boarding them up. However, whether it’s a road trip or a drive to the vet, driving with your pet can pose many dangers. According to AAA, 84% of survey respondents stated that they have driven with their pets on a variety of car trips; However, only 16% use any form of pet restraint system when driving with their dog.
In order to avoid dangers to you or your pet, read these tips for safe travels:
- Build your pet up to long trips.
This is probably one of the more important steps to take when taking your pet places. Before planning a long trip that requires your pet to be inside a moving vehicle for several hours, start by taking them on drives around the block. It’s best to avoid only putting your pet in the car when it’s time for the vet so they don’t associate the two and present a hard time when trying to get them in the car.
- Set them up in the back.
Keeping your pet in the backseat will not only help keep your eyes on the road but if an accident does occur and the airbag’s deploy it could seriously injure your furry friend.
- Feed them hours before hitting the road.
There is nothing more distracting than dealing with a sick pet while driving. If you don’t give your pet enough time to digest their food before placing them in the car, they can get car sick. You also don’t want to deal with them having to go to the bathroom minutes after setting out on the trip.
- Don’t let them hang out the window.
While it may be adorable to watch your pet enjoy the wind on their faces with tongues hanging out, it could actually be quite dangerous to them. The wind can irritate mucous membranes and a constant rush of cold air into their lungs could make them sick. There is also dust, debris, and objects that are carried by the wind and could cause injury.
- Never leave pets unattained.
Leaving your pet in a parked car is a bad idea, even for short periods of time and even in temperate weather. Vehicles can get very hot, very quickly, and exposure to intense heat for just half an hour can cause severe damage to your pet’s organs.
Here are some extra precautions to take to ensure optimal safety while traveling with pets.
- Pack a first-aid kit for your pet.
- Invest in a nice-sized, comfortable crate, or carrier.
- Get your pet microchipped.
- Bring a favorite toy to keep them occupied.
- Take frequent breaks on long trips to allow your pet to stretch.
- If possible, bring a friend or family member along to help with the drive.
Keeping your pet safe is a responsibility that should be taken seriously. Whether you’re preparing for a seven-hour road trip or a ten-minute drive to the vet, always ensure your pet is safely prepared.