International Pet Travel Country Questions

International Pet TravelTraveling internationally with a pet? Have questions about country requirements for entering with a pet?

  • Will my pet be quarantined?
  • What vaccinations does my pet need?
  • Will my pet need a passport?

Post your questions here and we will respond within 24 hours. You can also find information on international pet travel here: international pet travel

Airline Pet Policy Questions

Airline Pet Policy QuestionsFlying with a pet?   Have questions regarding airline pet policy?

  • Need to know what type of carrier you will need?
  • What does your pet need to fly as cargo?
  • Will the airlines transfer your pet from one plane to another?

Post your questions here and we will respond within 24 hours. You can also find information here: airline pet policies.

Best Dog Walks in Baltimore

Throughout the Baltimore area, dogs are welcome to take a hike with their favorite humans. In the city and within an hour’s drive are all the fun places a dog could dream of for outdoor fun. Whether you live in the region or are visiting, here are some of the best hiking choices.

Photo Credit: Kurt Jacobson

Baltimore Inner City

Best Dog Walks in Baltimore - Inner City

Starting at Boston St. and South East Street is where you’ll find Canton Waterfront Park that makes for an excellent starting place. After parking, take in the big views of the Inner Harbor as you walk towards the water’s edge. A well-marked path leads you towards the city skyline to start your hike. Of course, Fido will want to sniff and leave messages for the other canines in the area. This park has plenty of grass for such doggy actions. From this spot, you can walk all the way to the Rusty Scupper on one of America’s best harbor pathways. Along the way, some restaurants put out water bowls for dogs to quench their thirst. If you walk all the way to the Rusty Scupper, consider hiking up to Federal Hill and get a view of Baltimore’s skyline from the top of this historic mound. If you don’t want to walk all the way back the Water Taxi runs from the Domino Sugar site back to Canton Waterfront Park.

Best Dog Walks in Baltimore - Gunther and Company

After your walk, if it’s the second Tuesday of the month, Gunther & Company throws a party for dogs and their owners called Yappier Hour. Even if you miss this event, the deck is open for well-behaved dogs and their thirsty humans most of the year. Gunther & Company is just a few short blocks from Canton Waterfront Park.

 

Best Dog Walks in Baltimore - Inner Harbor Trail

A bit farther on the Inner Harbor Trail is one of the most historic dog walks. Even though the trail ends past the Rusty Scupper, you could either continue walking on safe sidewalks to Fort McHenry or drive there. The path around the fort is perfect for a shorter dog walk of about a half mile (0.8 km). There is also plenty of grassy lawn areas to take a step on the soft side. Smaller dogs that don’t have the endurance for a long walk so take a break at this historic site where a significant battle took place during the war of 1812.

Patterson Park is located in the Highlands neighborhood of Baltimore. On days when the weather is fine, there’s always plenty of happy dogs wagging tails at a chance to bark in the park. A hike up the hill to the Pagoda tower delivers a healthy walk and excellent views. Circumnavigate the park for the longest walk enjoying a look at one of Baltimore’s best-known working-class neighborhoods.

Best Dog Walks in Baltimore - Lake Roland Park

Lake Roland Park is north of downtown Baltimore and has several trails for you and man’s best friend. Take Jones Falls Road to Lakeside Drive and find a parking place. Head towards the lake and cross over the stream then head up past Paw Point Dog Park. This dog park is popular with locals and requires submitting an application and payment for membership. Don’t worry if you aren’t a member; you can still walk your dog in and around Lake Roland Park on several miles of trails in the woods and beyond. There are places where your dog can wade in the stream on hot days.

Best Dog Walks in Baltimore - NCR Trail

Take a drive north on York Road towards Cockeysville where the NCR Trail caters to hikers, bikers, and dog walkers all year long. The NCR is one of the best trails in Maryland offering miles of riverside beauty. There are several ways to get to the NCR Trail. If you’re driving north from Baltimore City on York Road, take a right turn on Ashland Road which becomes Paper Mill Road and look for the trailhead parking lot on the left. This lot is one of many NCR Trail parking areas. This old railway route was converted into a hiking trail with help from the Rails To Trails organization. The NCR Trail can be quite busy on weekends during summer as city residents find the shaded trial a respite from the heat and humidity of Baltimore. As long as you can find a place to park the crowds are well spread out, and it’s easy to enjoy the NCR Trail on even the busiest days.

Several places on the NCR Trail further north offer wading and tubing in the Little Gunpowder River. This scenic trail goes all the way to the Pennsylvania state line, a distance of 19.5 miles (31.3 km). Even though there are a few places along the path to get water, it’s best to pack some of your own if you aren’t familiar with the safe drinking spots. The old Monkton train station has a drinking fountain with a dog water bowl at its base, as does the Paper Mill Road parking area. Note that these watering stations are only functional in warm weather months.

Also north of Baltimore City find the Gunpowder Falls Trail in Perry Hall. This favorite trail is located just before reaching Kingsville. Take Belair Road north until you cross the Gunpowder River, and turn right into the parking area. If this parking area is full, and it often is on weekends in warm weather, park off of Belair Road like the locals do and walk to the parking lot to access the trail. Here on the Gunpowder River you and Fido will find several safe places to enter the water, and most agree the water is safe for dogs to drink. If you head upstream and hike for about 20 minutes, you’ll come to a spot where a smaller trail follows the river to a deep spot with a little waterfall. The waterfall area is a fun place for you and your pooch to take a dip in the fresh waters of the Gunpowder Falls. A word of caution is in order; there are snakes occasionally seen on the trail, but the chances are remote that the snake is poisonous.

For all of these walks, it’s recommended to bring poo pickup bags to keep the trails clean and fun for everyone. Looking for a day trip out with your best friend? Check out Trip101’s top day trips from Baltimore, or accommodation reviews, hotels and vacation rentals.

Kurt Jacobson is a travel writer for Trip101, a one-stop guide for travel enthusiasts around the world. He is a former chef traveling the world in search of great food, interesting people, fine wine, nature, fishing and skiing. New Zealand, Japan and Europe are his favorite international destinations. He has visited all 50 US states and constantly explores hidden gems. When not writing on his blog, or Trip101.com he posts to Facebook, and Twitter often.

Emotional Support and Service Animals – Airline Policies and How They are Changing

Airline pet policies on flying with emotional support and service animals are changing, and now the Department of Transportation (DOT) is considering changes to the Airline Carrier Access Act in order to address the issues that airlines have recently been facing – lack of training, the use of false credentials and the variety of animal species whose owners claim protection under this legislation.

Some of the changes that are being considered include policies that would distinguish between different types of animals, whether or not that they will need to travel in pet carriers, whether to limit the number of animals allowed per passenger, and whether to require all service animals have been trained to behave in a public setting.

The DOT is also considering fine-tuning its definition of service animal to dogs trained to assist the disabled with specific tasks.

Title 14 Code of Federal Aviation Regulations § 382.117 dictates that the airline “must permit the service animal to accompany the passenger with a disability at any seat in which the passenger sits, unless the animal obstructs an aisle or other area that must remain unobstructed to facilitate an emergency evacuation.” What is unclear is the species of the animal protected by this legislation, the type of disability, and the amount of information that must be disclosed to the airlines. Because of these gray areas, many of these protections have been extended to those who may not not truly qualify for them.

For the purposes of this post, service animals are defined as animals who have been trained to assist physically disabled passengers suffering from mobility issues, visual impairments, seizures, hearing issues, issues resulting from diabeties or other physical issues. Emotional support animals are those who assist passengers with emotional, psychiatric, cognitive or psychological disabilities and have not received specialized training.

On all airlines, service animals should be fully trained, clearly identified and leashed or harnessed. They will sit at their handler’s feet without protruding into the aisle or causing other safety concerns. Service animals in training may or may not be accepted by an airline under these regulations. Trained service dogs accompanied by their trainers and being delivered to their owners also may or may not fall under these regulations depending on airline policies. Therapy animals, rescue dogs and dogs providing immigration services such as drug or bomb detection are not accepted under these regulations.

Emotional support animals are permitted to sit in their owner’s laps if small enough not to touch any part of the seat and do not interfere or prevent other passengers from using seat amentities. They should be socialized and trained to behave around other people and pets, especially in small confines. Their owners should travel with proper documentation clearly identifying their licensed physician or medical professional, stating that they have a documented condition listed in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders that necessitates that their pet travel with them and dated within a year of flight departure.

In both cases, animals are not permitted to sit in exit row seats. They are not permitted to fly in the seat next to their owner. They are not permitted to sit on the tray table. Owners should be prepared to demonstrate that they are prepared to handle the service/emotional support animal’s hygienic needs on flights over 8 hours in duration. Some airlines will require that a sanitation form is completed prior to travel.

Additionally, notification must be provided and permission granted in advance for countries that require that all live animals arriving by air to arrive as checked baggage or air cargo in the hold of the aircraft. (United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia, India, New Zealand and others)

It is also important to note that both service and emotional support animals are subject to the same requirements when flying internationally as other animals of their species. Owners should be prepared to present rabies and health certificates and all other documentation required by the airline or their destination country upon check-in.

Here are some of the new (and old) regulations regarding service and emotional support animals. For the most part, regulations concerning service dogs have not changed. Note that we will make every attempt to update this post when regulations change. We will also be adding addendums to this post with regulations from other airlines.

Delta Airlines

As of July 10, 2018, Delta will no longer accept breeds included in the Pit Bull category as either service or emotional support anmimals.

Owners of trained service animals are encouraged but not required to provide a signed Veterinary Health Form and/or an immunization record (current within one year of the travel date) through a Service Animal Request form to the Support Desk via Delta.com at least 48 hours in advance of travel.

Owners of emotional support animals must submit an Emotional Support Psychiatric Service Animal Request form which requires a letter prepared and signed by a doctor or licensed mental health professional, and a signed Confirmation of Animal Training form to Delta’s Service Animal Support Desk via Delta.com at least 48 hours in advance of travel. Additionally, a copy of vaccination records may be provided in lieu of the Veterinary Health Form as long as the vaccination dates and veterinary office information are included.

Only one emotional support animal per passenger is permitted.

The following animals will not be accepted as trained service or emotional support animals: hedgehogs,ferrets, insects, rodents, snakes, spiders, sugar gliders, reptiles, amphibians, goats, non-household birds (farm poultry, waterfowl, game bird, & birds of prey), animals improperly cleaned and/or with a foul odor, or animals with tusks, horns or hooves.

United Airlines

United will accept service animals in the cabin at no charge. No documentation is required; however, notice should be given as employees can provide any equipment you may need.

Owners of emotional support animals must submit documentation from a licensed medical/mental health professional, a Passenger Confirmation of Liability and Emotional Support/Psychiatric Service Animal Behavior and a veterinary health form completed by a licensed veterinarian at least 48 hours of travel. These forms must be submitted to the United Airlines Accessibility Desk by email (uaaeromed@united.com) including first departure date and the flight confirmation (a six-character alphanumeric code) in the subject line. Pet owners must retain the original forms in their possession while traveling and be prepared to present them to airline representatives if requested. United will be contacting your mental health care professional to validate the documentation.

American Airlines

Service animals are accepted on American Airlines flights at no charge.

After July 1, 2018, American Airlines will require that owners of emotional support animals must provide their Special Assistance Desk with a Mental Health Professional Form, Behavior Guideline Form, and an Animal Sanitation Form (only required if your flight is scheduled to be over 8 hours) at least 48 hours before their flight. All documentation will be verified.

The following animals and birds will not be accepted as service or emotional suport animals on American Airlines’ flights: amphibians, ferrets, goats, hedgehogs, insects, reptiles, rodents, snakes, spiders, sugar gliders, non-household birds (farm poultry, waterfowl, game birds, & birds of prey), animals with tusks, horns or hooves (excluding miniature horses properly trained as service animals) or any animal that is dirty or has an odor.

Air France

Guide (service) dogs are accepted as long as they are clearly marked and remain leashed. Notification 48 hours in advance is required.

Air France will require that owners of emotional support animals provide notification at least 48 hours in advance by providing a medical certificate that is less than a year old. This certificate must be provided by a mental health specialist and attest that you have regular check-ups and need to be with your dog at all times. Air France will not accept dog breeds known as dangerous as service or emotional support dogs.

Lufthansa

Service dogs (guide dogs, hearing dogs, diabetic alertdogs, seizure alert dogs) can fly in the cabin with their handlers on all flights that Lufthansa operates.  For flights outside of the United States, a training certificate from a recognized training institute must be submitted in advance to the Lufthansa Medical Operation Centre via email or the Lufthansa Service Center. You will receive notice of approval from Lufthansa. Two copies of this form must be presented at check-in.

Lufthansa will only recognize emotional support dogs and only on flights to or from the United States. That means that, if you have a layover in a country other than the United States on your itinerary, your dog must fly the leg that does not involve the United States in a carrier in the cabin or in the cargo hold as checked baggage for a fee.

Within 48 hours of flight departure, your service or emotional support dog must be registered with the centers referenced above and a medical certificate issued by a licensed physician confirming the need for you to be accompanied by an emotional support dog must be presented. You will receive notification of approval from Lufthansa. Two copies of this form will be required at check-in.

Air Canada

All service dogs must be accompanied with an identification or card or other written document and be clearly identified. Notification must be provided a minimum of 48 hours prior to departure.

Emotional support dogs are recognized on flights to or from the United States and also flights with an Air-Canada operated flight through a US-based airline. Documentation for emotional support dogs must be provided to Air Canada reservations a minimum of 48 hours prior to departure and must include an original letter dated within the past year on the letterhead of a licensed mental health professional treating the passenger’s mental or emotional disability recognized by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. Your professional’s license information must also be provided.

British Airways

All service dogs must have been trained to assist a disabled person and certified by an organization that is a member of Assistance Dogs International or International Guide Dog Federation. Notification should be provided at least 7 days in advance. British Airways does not recognize emotional support animals.

Emirates

Emirates will transport guide dogs for the blind in the cabin free of charge. Forty eight hour notice must be provided when traveling with a guide dog. Emotional support animals are not recognized.

JetBlue

Beginning July 1, 2018, required documentation for emotional support animals must be provided to JetBlue at least 48 hours prior to departure. This documentation will include: Medical/Mental Health Professional form issued and signed by a medical or mental health professional, Veterinary Health form completed and signed by your veterinarian and
Customer Confirmation of Emotional Support/Psychiatric Service Animal Behavior form completed by the pet owner.

Only one cat, dog or miniature horse is permitted per passenger.

Allegiant Airlines

Allegiant will permit services in the cabin free of charge if they provide identification cards, tags, or other written documentation; harnesses or markings on harnesses or the credible verbal assurances of the individual with a disability using the animal.

Within 48 hours of initial departure, the following documentation must be provided for emotional support animals: letter from a mental health professional (e.g., a psychiatrist, psychologist, licensed clinical social worker, or other medical doctor on their letterhead specifically treating the passenger’s mental or emotional disability). The letter must state that the passenger has a mental or emotional health-related disability recognized in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders-Fourth Edition (DSM IV), that having the animal accompany the passenger is necessary to the passenger’s mental health or treatment or to assist the passenger with his or her disability during the flight or at the passenger’s destination.

The letter must also state that the individual providing the assessment of the passenger is a licensed mental health professional and the passenger is under his or her professional care. Information regarding the licensing of the mental health professional and the state in which the professional is licensed is required.

If your airline is not listed above, you can contact us at info@pettravel.com with any questions.

Photo credit: typicalanimals.com via Pinterest

The Best Dog Friendly City in the UK: Brighton Rocks!

Brighton Rocks! The Best Dog Friendly City In the United Kingdom

Best Dog Friendly City - BrightonA study completed in 2017 by National Pet Owners indicates that there are 85 million homes in the United States where a pet is a family member. This is an increase of 56% since the survey was first conducted in 1988. By far, the most popular of pets are dogs with 60.2 million and followed by cats who make up 47.1 million of the US pet population.

Precise figures for the number of owners taking pets on vacation are not available; but a survey conducted by TripAdvisor found that 53% of those surveyed travel with their pets. The cost of boarding, and the stress for both animal and owner from being apart for several weeks, means there are more pets being taken on vacationwith their families.

If you are looking to travel abroad with your four-legged friend, and you are considering the United Kingdom, then look no further than Brighton for your vacation. It is a great location in the south-east of England and has been voted the top dog friendly city a number of times. It is worthwhile planning your trip well in advance as there are a number of important things to do before you fly with your dog.

Things to consider before travel
Just one hour away from world famous London, one of the top ten cities globally, Brighton is smaller and quieter, and the perfect destination for dog lovers. One of the things that makes Brighton an attractive place to consider is that it is much easier to bring pets to the UK, with no extensive quarantine restrictions to overcome. Preparation is the key and you should allow at least four months prior to your vacation if you are entering from a high-rabies country.

You will be required to ensure your dog, cat or ferret has been microchipped, had a rabies vaccination and a blood test to prove vaccination has been successful (high-rabies countries only); a completed EU Health Certificate or EU Pet Passport (EU resident dogs) that must be completed by your vet; and, tapeworm treatment for dogs that must be completed between one and five days before entering the UK by a licensed veterinarian. It is also advisable to check that your carrier is airline-compliant as your dog must enter the UK as air cargo if it is flying.

Dog friendly accommodations in Brighton
There are many splendid places to take your dog on holiday in the UK such as the Lake District and the Cotswolds, with wide open spaces and plenty of walking routes. Brighton has been consistently voted as one of the top cities in the UK to take your pet. Why?
Because there is an abundance of accommodations that welcome both pet owners and their dogs in Brighton. And, with such an enormous selection of places to stay on vacation, the choices are wide and varied with something for everyone. From the Tudor/Gothic Hotel du Vin & Bistro nestled in Brighton’s oldest part of town and just a stone’s throw away from the picturesque promenade; to the Victorian five star The Grand Brighton with its prime sea view location and interior splendor this makes a fine place to vacation with your pooch.

Spending quality time with your dog
What attracts many dog lovers to Brighton is the access to the wonderful beaches. There is nothing quite like fresh salty sea air to revitalise and refresh mind and body. And nothing better than doing this with your four-legged friend.

Dogs are allowed on the main Brighton beach from October through to April. During the summer months there are restrictions but there are lots of other beaches available like the West Marina Wall and Rottingdean slope are summertime dog-friendly, as are the beaches between the west of the Brighton Marina and up to Volks Railway Aquarium station, the beach opposite Holland Road, the beach to the west of the King Alfred Park and the beach opposite Berridale/Welback.

And for solo travelers, Brighton also boasts the most dog meetup groups than any other city in the UK so socializing with other dog walkers could not be easier.

Spending your valuable vacation time with your dog can be rewarding for you both. Travel beyond the United States can be daunting; but as long as it planned well, this should not present a barrier. If England is your preferred destination then Brighton offers the perfection location with a huge number of places to eat and sleep, and where both you and your dog will be warmly welcomed.

Jane Sandwood is a freelance writer and editor who spent over a decade in the tourism industry.

Dog Travel: Seven Things You Can Do With Your Dog In Switzerland

It’s exciting to travel around the world on your own, with your family, or with your friends, but one other companion makes the journey a little bit more precious: your dog.

In many countries, bringing dogs along can be a challenge. The “No Pets Allowed” can often be seen. And on the few occasions that paws are allowed through the door, people around you often may not be comfortable seeing pets in shops or restaurants.

Not in Switzerland! Europe, in general, is generally a very dog-friendly place. You’ll find dogs walking alongside you on busy streets or taking a nap under the shade of an outdoor café. And, in Switzerland, you can take in all the wonders nature can offer and have your dog be right there with you.

So if you’re ready to go on a Swiss adventure with your precious pooch, here are seven things you can do with your dogs in Switzerland:

1. Be one with nature

Going on a hike or a bike ride is probably one of the main reasons for traveling to Switzerland. If your dog is as fit as you are, you are more than welcome to bring them on hiking trails and jogging paths. Personally, I have seen and taken dogs all over the alps, and they love it!

In general, dogs need to be leashed when on trails. If you already know where you’re traveling to, look up the relevant regulations. Different cantons have different rules about pets. The Canton of Schwyz is the only canton in Switzerland with a leash law in all public places, including hiking trails. Other cantons tend to be more lenient. However, in general, as long as you don’t disturb anyone, you will be good to go. Either way though, if you are in an area where you see “Robidog” boxes (green boxes on a stand) it means you are expected to pick up and dispose of your dog’s droppings.

2. Have a dog-gone blast at the park

You don’t have to head to the Alps to breathe in fresh Swiss air. There are many dog parks in several cities for you to visit. Once again, different dog parks have different laws. In general, be prepared to leash your dogs. Some parks require the leash during breeding season, while some fenced dog parks don’t require it at all. Obviously, you are also expected to clean up after your dog.

Not all public parks allow dogs, either. Watch out for the signs so you don’t end up with a heavy fine. The Swiss do love their rules! Some great places to spend an afternoon with your dog are Parc Bertrand or Genthod in Geneva, Horburgpark in Basel, or the Allmend Brunau (technically not a dog park, but great place for all sorts of furry playmates) in Zurich.

3. City-hop with your dog

Public transportation in Switzerland is very dog friendly and a great way to travel with your dog. Small dogs in carriers can usually take a ride for free. Big dogs are issued a half-price ticket. If you can’t handle all the walking through the maze of streets in any city, then don’t hesitate to hop on the bus, train, tram, and even ferry. You can even get day cards or travelcards for your dogs to make hopping on and off public transport much more convenient. That doesn’t happen in most countries, right?

4. Take the Fondue Tram in Zurich

Take all the things that you love and enjoy all of it in one go: travel, food, and playtime with your pooch. The Fondue Tram in Zurich celebrates what Switzerland does best – cheese. The tram takes you on a tour around the most popular sights in Zurich while you enjoy a meal with fondue and drinks. The best part? Your dog is more than welcome to join you with a half-price ticket.

And even if fondue or trams are not your thing, many restaurants are happy to have your dog, as long as it behaves. Especially in summer, when you can sit outside freely on the terraces Europe is renowned for. Of course, some restaurants are dog-friendlier than others, but it pays to just ask and more often than not you will get a friendly nod.

5. Take your dog shopping

Shopping in Switzerland is a must, whether you’re actually out to buy something or just happily browsing dazzling displays. Switzerland is known for very posh shopping streets like the Bahnhofstrasse in Zurich, Rue du Rhone, or Place de la Rippone in Geneva. You can also find a lot of quaint boutique shops with unique Swiss finds.

Window-shop to your heart’s content with your dog on a leash. Most stores are very dog-friendly, except for those that sell food, of course. When a shop does not allow pets inside, there will most likely be a post for you to tie your dog while you browse through the store. The Swiss are very thoughtful that way.

6. Immerse in Swiss Culture and History

Every city in Switzerland has its own version of Old Town. Here, perfectly preserved structures and architecture tell the story of how the city began. This kind of travel can be a little tricky when you’re bringing your dog along. As a general rule, dogs are not allowed in museums and some cathedrals where valuable items and treasures are carefully preserved. Some castles may also restrict the entry of dogs.

So, where can you go with your dog?

It won’t be that hard to bring your dog around the city. Just be ready with a leash or a carrier. Check out the Luzern Musegg Wall for a taste of history and architecture with your dog. If you want something closer to nature, you can visit Bern Bear Park and introduce your dogs to a new kind of furry friend.

7. Enjoy a classy hotel together

After a long day of adventure and exploring, the best thing to do is snuggle up in comfortable sheets in a warm room in Switzerland. Not all hotels allow pets in the room, but it won’t take you too long to find the perfect, and dog-friendly Swiss hotel for you and your dog. Sometimes, they even go out of their way to make your dogs feel just as welcome as you do.

Now that you have an almost endless list of options for traveling with your dog in Switzerland, all that is left to do is book the trip, right? Note: One last tip. Just keep in mind, that there are always rules for entering Switzerland with a dog. But, when traveling with your dog to Switzerland from the United States and Canada, it is simply a microchip, rabies vaccination and endorsed EU Health Certificate.

Roger Timbrook is a keen traveler, lover of dogs and the outdoors. Originally from Australia, he is now living in Switzerland where he spends most of his time enjoying the amazing Swiss Alps. You can find him on his blog or on Twitter.

Pet Travel: Pet Friendly Cabin in the Woods – You, Your Dog and the Wonder of Nature

10 Things to Keep in Mind When Vacationing in a Pet Friendly Cabin With Your Dog

Tired of the hustle and bustle of the world in which we all live? Want to take a break and go where silence is king and the wonders of nature surround you and your dog?

A pet friendly cabin is an ideal place to travel with your dog. There’s plenty of room to run and play, and you don’t have to leave them at home – your best friend misses you more than you know when you leave. Depending on the personality of your dog, this can result in fears of abandonment and lead to destructive behavior. Besides, what would be more fun for you both than an experience walking through the woods?

When staying a cabin with your best furry friend, make their stay just as enjoyable as yours. Keep these ten things in mind when traveling with your dog to ensure their safety, comfort and pleasure while still respecting your accommodations:

Before You Travel to Your Pet Friendly Cabin

1. Don’t Forget Water and Food Bowls as well as Your Pet’s Food

As you pack, it’s easy to forget simple but important things your dog will need. Start with packing their water and food bowls and also an ample supply of their food. Portable pet bowls are best because you can carry them with you on your hikes.

With these items, include a mat with a sticky bottom to secure the bowls from sliding and spilling. Just as it does at home, this will prevent stains and tripping hazards in the cabin.

2. Bring Inside and Outside Toys

While on vacation, your dog will have plenty to do, so they won’t need toys, right? Like at home, your dog can get bored or will need to be occupied during times of rest. Their toys from home will be comforting to them while in a strange environment. Why not bring things for them to fetch to give them extra exercise?

Toys appropriate for inside and outside play are necessary for your packing list: Frisbees, balls and dirty ropes are perfect for outside. Rubber chickens, chews and non-squeaky toys are best for inside play.

3. Consider the Climate

Will it be hot or cold? Will your dog be able to handle the prevailing temperatures? Make the transition easier on your pet by supplying additional water, pet sweaters and blankets. Oh, and bring plenty of pet towels to dry them when they jump in the creek!

4. Prep for Sleep Conditions

Your pet will be sleeping in a completely different environment, and it’s important to make them as comfortable as possible. Bring the bed they use at home if at all possible or consider a pet travel bed.

Will your dog sleep in their typical room, even if the environment is different, or will they need to sleep by your bed? Your cabin may not allow your dog to sleep in the bed with you.

5. Bring Medications

Does your dog require important medications? Do not forget those vital prescriptions, and it may be necessary to have your veterinarian order additional medicine in case. Bring your veterinarian’s contact information with you and know where the nearest veterinary hospital is in case of emergencies.

Dogs can develop allergies during the winter, so be prepared for this when shifting from a hot to a cold environment. Your dog may get sniffly or have itchy skin just like you do when the seasons abruptly shift.

6. Prepare a Pet First-Aid Kit

Your pet needs a first-aid kit, too. You’ll need tick and flea medicine, and here are a few other recommendations similar to what goes into a human first-aid kit:

  • tweezers
  • scissors with a blunt end
  • cotton balls and swabs
  • ice pack
  • adhesive tape
  • absorbent gauze
  • antiseptic wipes
  • rectal thermometer with petroleum jelly

Hydrogen peroxide can be used to induce vomiting, if your dog eats something they shouldn’t. Ask your veterinarian first! Your veterinarian can also recommend a good pet-first aid kit if you prefer to buy one.

Once You Get To Your Pet Friendly Cabin

7. In Case of Weather-Induced Anxiety

One of the most prominent and understandable triggers for pet anxiety is volatile weather. Research weather conditions before you head to the cabin.

In the case of a severe storm, calming methods will help ground your pet. Simply sitting with your dog usually calms them, and you can try to distract your pet with their favorite toy. Just as you might use swaddling to help a baby fall asleep, thunderstorm sweaters are also made for dogs. A trainer may be able to help by recommending playing low recordings of storms on a regular but short-term basis to overcome their fear or develop a healthy coping mechanism. All natural pet calmers can also help take the edge off any anxiety that your pup may feel.

8. Respect Leash and Sanitary Disposal Laws

Before you leave, research leash laws in the area you’ll be visiting. If hiking on trails with your dog, must pets be leashed, or is it safe for them to run free? What about when you go into town? Best always to leash your dog when around other people in places not familiar to them, no matter how friendly they are with you and those people they know.

Observe leash laws and keep your dog happy, as many parks require the removal of renegade or noisy pets. Bring along sanitary bags to dispose of pet waste in an environmentally-friendly way when on a hike. Some parks have regulations for your pet’s bathroom breaks.

9. Make a Cabin Pet Space

An effective solution to keeping your pet comfortable and happy on your getaway is to make a cabin pet space. You can repurpose unused areas in the den to create a cozy sleeping spot by the fire, and use gates to give your dog designated roaming places. If your dog is pad-trained and appreciates privacy, place their potty place under the sink or in another out of the way place.

Try to place pet spaces in familiar areas, but with a little routine, your dog will get used to their new spaces. They’ll also feel more at home on the family vacation.

10. Establish a Vacation Routine with Your Dog

Establishing a vacation routine with your dog is one of the most helpful things you can do once you’re at the cabin. Simulate your daily routine with your dog while at the cabin as closely as possible to what you follow at home. For example, feed and walk your pet, get up in the morning and go to bed at night close to the times you do every day.

These ten tips will help your dog enjoy their stay and enhance the fun of your trip. No one wants to leave their furry best friend at home. Pack with your dog’s comfort and fun in mind, and it’ll be a memorable trip for all.

Here is one website that offers pet friendly cabins for destinations worldwide.


Kacey BradleyKacey Bradley is the lifestyle and travel blogger for The Drifter Collective, an eclectic lifestyle blog that expresses various forms of style through the influence of culture and the world around us. Kacey graduated with a degree in Communications while working for a lifestyle magazine. She has been able to fully embrace herself with the knowledge of nature, the power of exploring other locations
and cultures, all while portraying her love for the world around her through her visually pleasing, culturally embracing and inspiring posts. Along with writing for her blog, she frequently writes for sites like US Travel News, Thought Catalog, Style Me Pretty, Tripping.com and more!

Pet Travel: Why Temperatures Matter

Protect your pet from low and high temperaturesSo, it’s time to travel with your pet. Whether your trip is planned or unexpected, why should you understand that temperatures matter? Simply put, extreme weather outside your door, at any place you stop along the way or at your destination, can put your pet at great risk when traveling, especially when flying.

How does a cat or dog regulate its body temperature in periods of high temperature? Our fur babies do not sweat through their skin as we do. Their coat helps protect them, keep them warm in the winter and cool in the summer. They can perspire through their ear canals and the pads of their feet, but they regulate their body temperature primarily through their respiratory system (panting). Excessive panting promotes dehydration, and that is why having water available to them when traveling is important.

How about low temperatures? If dogs and cats are exposed to low temperatures for long periods of time, body temperatures can drop and hypothermia can develop. As time passes, their body’s ability to bring itself back to normal temperatures diminishes. Depression of the circulatory, central nervous, respiratory and the immune systems commonly develop. It all leads to difficulty breathing, which is never good for any of our four-legged friends.

Every animal is different in how they handle changes in temperature. The size, age, breed, type of coat and health all play a part in protecting your cat or dog from variations in body temperature. Snub-nosed breeds are particularly at risk due to their inability to breathe efficiently.

Obviously, dogs and cats that have thick undercoats like Huskies, Samoyeds, Malamutes, Persians, and Maine Coon Cats, for example, are better protected in periods of cold weather while Chihuahuas, Sphynx cats and other small, short-haired breeds are more susceptible to cold temperatures. Makes sense, right? Does it work the other way around? Not necessarily. It depends on your pet’s normal environment and what temperatures they are accustomed to.

If your dog or cat is traveling from a warm climate to a cold climate, it is important to offer protection to them until they can become accustomed to lower temperatures. One way to help is with a self warming pad. This nifty pad can be used in a crate, carrier, cage or a car and will hold your pet’s natural body heat to be reabsorbed back into its body helping to keep it warm. Don’t forget sweaters for short-haired dogs and cats in low temperatures.

Let’s first consider ground travel as it is a less stressful way to travel with a pet. Obviously, if you are traveling in a car, conditions will be stable for your dog or cat because you will have control over temperatures in your car; that is, as long as you are in it. If you leave your pets in your car unaccompanied, know that temperatures can rise or fall very quickly in summer and winter, even if you leave the window open a bit. Takes only a few minutes to become risky for them, especially in periods of higher temperatures.

Remember, too, that our friends need pit stops when traveling and protecting their pads is important in both summer when asphalt is hot and winter when sidewalks are icy and snow is on the ground. Dry their pads well, removing any snow or ice that is caught in their pads. (Cats will especially love this.)

If your dog or cat is flying in an airline cargo hold, temperatures really matter.

When flying in the hold, the time when your dog or cat is most at risk is not after take off at 30,000 feet but on the ground during periods of holding, loading and taxiing. Most cargo areas are not heated or air conditioned efficiently and it can get mighty cold or hot waiting for hours before loading. (United Airlines offers climate-controlled holding areas.) Live animals are generally the last thing loaded, so they wait on the baggage carrier or the tarmac until it is their turn. Also, if the airport is busy and there is a wait to take off, tarmac temperatures can affect the cargo hold until the aircraft’s heating or cooling systems kick in. (like conditions in the cabin)

If you are flying your dog or cat in the cargo hold, your airline will not accept live animals when temperatures on the tarmac fall below 45°F (7°C) or higher than 85°F (29°C) anywhere on your route (origination, layover or destination). Some airlines may accept an acclimate certificate issued by your veterinarian if your pet lives in a cold climate and is a breed that is accustomed to lower temperatures. No such certificate is available for higher temperatures and rightly so. Like a hot car, periods of high temperatures are extremely risky, even to healthy pets.

OK, so what can we do, as responsible pet owners, to avoid extreme temperatures?

Travel in Spring or Fall
The best time for pets to travel is the Spring or Fall when temperatures are not extremely hot or cold, no matter how you choose to move your pet.

Travel During Non-Holiday Periods
Book your flight on a Tuesday or Wednesday when demands on the cargo hold are not as excessive. If driving, traffic will be lighter on these days. If you are traveling for Thanksgiving or Christmas, go several days early before the rush and return during the week after the holiday.

Drive or Fly Directly
Unless you are traveling in an RV, get to your destination as soon as you can so you can introduce your pet to a stable environment. If flying, opt for a direct flight. It may be more expensive than a layover, but far less stressful for your pet. Never change airline companies along the way if at all possible.

Get Your Pet Acclimated to Travel
Lots of short trips in the car will help your dog or cat get used to leaving its environment and travel will become a bit less stressful.Get your pet a good restraint, whether a pet carrier or a booster seat. If flying, get a good pet crate and get your pet used to it as early as possible.

Life Happens – What to do?
Because, we do not always get the opportunity to plan our travels. Life brings sudden changes and all of us want our pets with us when it is time to go. If temperatures are high, then consider driving to an airport where temperatures are cooler if possible. Talk to your airline about holding and loading procedures.

If your destination is too hot or cold when you need to travel, you may need to leave your pet with friends or family until such time that it is safe for them to travel. Yes, it’s inconvenient, but safety is first and to lose a pet is surely a tragedy. Better to fly your best friend alone or go get them later when temperatures are more tolerable.

Find more information on traveling with your pet.

 

Six Tips for a Safe Thanksgiving with your Dog and Cat

Thanksgiving is a wonderful time, invoking thoughts of home-cooked turkey and all the trimmings, sharing love and laughter with family and friends, as well as toasting the start of the holiday season. Diets will wait when tables of turkey and ham, gravy, mashed and sweet potatoes, rolls, vegetables and, of course, pumpkin pie are served. Food for everyone? Hold on.

Here are six tips for a safe Thanksgiving with your dog or cat.

Holiday decorations
When you decorate, think of how a child could hurt themselves if they can get a hold of your holiday decorations. (Pets are our children, after all, right?.) Decorations can be attractive to a dog and especially a cat. Be sure that they are out of reach or, if you have a cat who is comfortable with heights, make sure that decorations cannot be knocked off a shelf. Be careful with candles and consider battery operated candles if you have an inquisitive cat.

Identify your dog or cat
It is easy for your dog or cat to slip through the door when guests arrive. Be sure they have their collar on with an ID tag with their name and your phone number engraved on it. Better yet, make sure they have a microchip so you can be identified as the owner and be contacted if they are picked up. (be sure your information is registered in a microchip database).

Stick to the schedule
Keep to your dog or cat’s schedule on Thanksgiving day as much as possible. Take them for a long walk before guests arrive so they will get some exercise. Feed them at their normal time, even if they are a bit distracted by the activity around them. Not that it may make a difference, but feeding them before the big meal may cut down on begging.

Deal with kitchen confusion
Kitchens are popular places during Thanksgiving and wonderful smells quickly attract your furry friends. Take care to pick up any scraps that fall on the floor. Handle raw turkeys with great care and disinfect all counters, cutting boards and knives after contact. Take out the trash often and keep the lid securely closed. After dinner, make sure dishes are stacked where your dog or cat cannot reach them until they are rinsed or washed. Refrigerate leftovers as soon as you can.

Pets can get underfoot
Your guests may not be accustomed to pets being underfoot. Although your cat may hide, dogs, being social, will want to mingle with your guests. If your guests will be standing before dinner, or you have an overly enthusiastic pup, then consider keeping your them in another room, after introductions, until after your guests are seated at the dining room table.

Set the rules
The first people that your dog or cat will approach for food is your guests. Why? Because guests don’t know the rules of the house. If you normally feed your dog or cat while you are eating (bad habit), then prepare a plate of tid-bits (read on) so that everyone can share the feast with your pet. Otherwise, tell your guests not to feed your pets until after dinner is over.

What can your dog and cat eat on turkey day?

Your dog or cat can eat small bits of white turkey (no gravy, salt or pepper), cooked or raw white or sweet potato (remove some pieces from the pot before you whip them), macaroni and cheese, green beans, carrots, corn and a bit of baked bread. Small amounts of peanuts, almonds and cashews are also safe for your dog.

What foods to avoid sharing on turkey day?
Do not feed your dog or cat any ham, pork, turkey bones, stuffing, gravy, onions, casseroles, marshmallows or any desserts as this can cause stomach upset. Who needs that on turkey day?

Have a wonderful and safe Thanksgiving holiday with your furry friends. For more tips on pet health and travel, go to PetTravel.com.

Why You Should Never Leave Your Dog or Cat in a Disaster

Do not leave your pet in a natural disasterAdopting or buying a dog or cat is a bit like adopting a child. They will give you unconditional love and loyalty; they will be an important part of your family, and they will provide true companionship to you and your family.

Yet pet owners should not forget that dogs and cats need to be fed, loved, disciplined and protected. They will depend on you to keep them safe for their lifetime, especially in uncertain times.

Perhaps it is a drop in barometric pressure, but animals know when a change in weather is imminent.  They can feel your concern and see a change in your schedule. They can hear the noise of the wind as the speed and intensity increases.

On a personal note, despite being 2 blocks from an evacuation zone, we decided not to evacuate as our home is hardened for storms and we did not want to remove our dogs from their home. For 18 hours, our dogs lay on our feet and looked at us with worried faces while the wild winds and rain of Hurricane Irma pelted our windows. It was difficult to comfort them despite all the attention that we showed them.

They could not understand what was going on and were visibly disturbed. If we went to the next room, they went to the next room right on our heels. They followed us to the bathroom, to the kitchen and to the bedroom all day and night. When we snuck them outside between weather bands for a bathroom break, they strained on their leashes with wild eyes wondering where they should run. (We did have them on leashes.)

We got through the storm together and, we would not have done it any other way.

It is very important that pet owners must have a plan to deal with disasters such as hurricanes, floods or fires, and this plan must include their pet. You should never leave your dog or cat alone in times of disasters.

What can you do to prepare should you need to leave your home?

Call your local government and identify pet friendly shelters as they fill up quickly. Find pet friendly hotels in areas that are deemed safe and make reservations early.

Get a pet crate or pet carrier for your pet if they will be with you in a shelter as shelters require that your pet be contained during their stay. Be sure you have good pet pads to keep your pet dry and clean. You may also want to bring your pet to the hotel in a crate or carrier to keep it safe and secure.

Put a used t-shirt in your dog or cat’s crate so they will feel comfort with your scent.

Bring your pet’s leash and be sure your contact information is on a tag on your pet’s collar.

Bring at least 4-5 days supply of food and also a food and water bowl.

Bring all of your pet’s medication and a copy of your pet’s rabies certificate if it does not have a rabies tag.

Bring a chew toy or a few more of your pet’s toys to help keep it occupied.

Bring a spare towel for easy clean ups.

What to do if you need to evacuate and cannot take your pet?

Ask friends or relatives in areas not threatened by the crisis whether they can care for your pet during the disaster. Drive them if you can and relocate them well in advance.

If you elect to fly, your pet can accompany you, so make reservations early and make sure your pet is fit to fly with a visit to your vet for a health certificate.

The very last resort is to surrender your dog or cat to a shelter. Although it is hard to understand how a pet owner could choose this option, it is certainly better than abandoning them in an empty home or, worse yet, in the middle of a storm or fire. Just know that you are giving up your rights to your dog or cat. After surrendering, it will be put up for adoption.

There is no excuse for leaving your pet with no means to protect itself during disasters. Pet owners take on the responsibility to care for their dog or cat for its lifetime when they get their pet. If they cannot fulfill this commitment, they simply should not get a pet.  Period.