Traveling with your dog can be a transformative experience. Having your pet along for the ride while you visit new places and explore them can be fun for both of you, and it’s a bonding experience that neither of you will forget. Of course, dogs have their own set of safety and comfort considerations, so it’s important to think about how best to plan for your trip when you’ll be bringing him along. Keeping him active is crucial, as dogs need lots of exercise, so if you’re going to be staying in a hotel, make sure there’s a dog park or pet-friendly beach nearby.
Most travelers have a budget they want to stick to, and when you’re taking care of a fellow passenger — even one on four legs — you want to make sure you aren’t overspending, especially if you’re going to travel outside of the US. Planning ahead of time will help you create a budget that works for you and your pup, so think about what he might need on the road and how you can make sure he’s safe and comfortable for the duration.
Here are some things to take into consideration when traveling with your dog.
Save on Necessities
Your pet will definitely need a few things to stay comfortable on the road, but you don’t have to spend a ton of money to get ready for the trip. Whether you need a new leash, portable food and water bowls, or a safe pet carrier, you can look online for retailers and coupons through Ebates, and in some cases, you may even basically get paid to shop.
Find Accommodations Ahead of Time
When traveling with your pet, it’s imperative to find your accommodations ahead of time to ensure his comfort and the comfort of the guests around you. Whether you want to camp out while you’re on the road or plan to stay in hotels, you should do research before you leave. Look online to find the best dog-friendly spots to stay in and find out whether they require a cleaning deposit or if they have specific rules about breeds and weight limits. Taking care of your accommodations in advance will also allow you to find discounts and pin down the best rates.
Research Pet-Friendly Stops
No matter what your final destination is, you’ll probably want to include some stops along the way if you’re traveling by car. Look online to find out what sort of restaurants, coffee shops, truck stops, and tourist attractions are on the route that are dog-friendly, including in the area of where you’ll be staying. If you can bring your dog along with you on most of your outings, it will save you from having to pay for a sitter or daycare for your pet.
It’s also a good idea to look for a vet in the city where you’ll be staying. If your dog should suffer an injury or get sick, it may be very expensive to take him to an emergency animal doctor. Having a vet selected ahead of time will give you peace of mind while you’re traveling.
Plan Ahead for Flying
Flying can be pretty costly when you’re alone, but when you add in a pet to the mix, it can blow your budget very quickly. To keep costs low, look for airlines that offer frequent flyer miles for customers who travel with pets, as this will help you out the next time you fly. You should also check with the airline about their rules regarding breed and size restrictions, specifically when it comes to pet carriers. If your carrier doesn’t comply with their specific rules, you may be required to shell out some cash for one from the airline.
Traveling with your dog can be a great time for both of you, but only if you’re both prepared for the trip. Whether you’re driving or flying, you’ll want to make sure he’s ready for it all. Keep in mind that you may want to go over some basic commands with him to ensure he’ll listen when it’s time to be quiet or stay; this will keep both him and the people around you safe.