how to travel with pets for the holidays without anxiety

Travel, especially with little ones can be complex. Add in holiday craze, a furry little one, and a little cold weather, and things can escalate quickly.

By guest blogger, Jonathan Maxim

According to the dog walking network Rover, 37% of dog owners have skipped vacation to stay with their dog. Beyond that, 10% have hidden their dog in their luggage to sneak them into a hotel, and 3% have tried to disguise their dog as a baby when boarding a plane (seriously!).

It’s easy to forget that the whole intention of this endeavor is to relax with loved ones.

Being the owner of a corgi and an Australian shepherd, Rigby, and Sydney respectively, I know firsthand the challenge of pups on the go. And so do they. 

However, with a little planning, traveling with pets this holiday season can be a breeze.

So let’s make sure that our pets aren’t anxious, we have the best carry-on luggage, and in turn, we’re not, by making smart travel plans.

Traveling with dogs may have you begging for help

With pet travel, you have all the same options, but a lot more restrictions. So it helps to map out exactly where you’re headed and how you get there to make sure your dogs don’t become overly anxious, and in turn, you.

Traveling by Airplane

Many dogs, especially rescues, have a hard time with new people. Add in thousands rushing to make a flight, and a crowded security line and your dog can become overwhelmed quickly. For this reason, airlines all require a crate. So make sure you have a clean one ready to go.

According to the AKC, it should be:

  • Large enough to allow the dog to stand, turn, and lie down.
  • Strong, with handles and grips, and free of interior protrusions.
  • Leak-proof bottom covered with absorbent material.
  • Ventilation on opposing sides, with exterior rims or knobs to prevent blocked airflow.
  • “Live Animal” label, arrows showing upright position, with owner’s name, address, and phone number.
  • Stock the crate with a comfortable mat, your dog’s favorite toy, and a water bottle, and your dog is ready to go.

Once you have the crate taken care of, consider the following.

You need to visit the vet prior, and have health certifications to the airline 10 days in advance of your flight, covering rabies and vaccinations as well as the dog must be weaned and over 8 weeks old.

Airlines take no responsibility for your dog’s health, and the ability to fly. That rests on you. For that reason, check with your vet about whether your dog should be tranquilized prior to flying. Another solution is CBD, which can help calm their nerves. And can be quite a bit cheaper and faster.

about the author

Jonathan Maxim is a health and fitness junkie from Venice, CA who spends his days building businesses, but at home loves his Aussie named Sydney, and Corgi named Rigby. After bad hips began to torment the Aussie, he began using CBD to help mitigate the pain and relieve anxiety for the two family dogs, and since created a whole company around it called Friendly Paws. Their mantra is “Plants over Pills”.

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