It’s now been over a year since we’ve been coping with all the restrictions and lock downs that the Covid-19 Pandemic has given us and many of us are chomping at the bit to get away. Now that the active number of cases continues to drop and more and more people have been vaccinated, certain restrictions have been lifted and some places have begun to open their doors for travel away from home within the province.
In the past couple of weeks several cottages, Airbnb’s and hotels have opened their doors and are accepting reservations for a family get away. So if you have the time and resources and want a change of scenery, the first step to consider is whether your pet is welcome to stay with you.
There are many places that are “pet friendly” but not all of them are so before you start packing be sure to check. If you plan on taking your pet, you need to make a list of all the necessary things you need to bring to make your trip and time away enjoyable and worry free for all.
If you are going to a cottage or other country resort, you would be wise to bring your own bottled water for yourselves as well as for your furry friend. Many places outside the city take water from rivers or other sources such as a well and, for anyone not used to it, you may end up with diarrhea. This also applies for your furry four legged family member. Also remember to pack water and food bowls for your pup.
Be sure that you take a supply of food from home for your pup to cover the number of days you’ll be away and always take some extra food just in case you extend your stay. Remember, you may not always be able to purchase your usual pet food or treats once you’re outside the city.
Another thing to consider is to bring additional bedding for your furry friend. Even if the place you’re going is “pet friendly”, it’s still respectful to make sure that you don’t get your pet’s fur or dander on the bedding or furniture. There may be other people who are visiting with allergies who may have a bad reaction.
If you’ve crate trained your pup, you should bring his crate along with you. Your pet will feel more comfortable with his own crate, especially being in a strange environment. It’s the safest thing to have in the event you have to leave him alone in the room or cottage for a couple of hours.
You should also be sure that your pet is up-to-date with shots and is wearing his tags along with a tag with his name and your cell phone number on it, just in case he gets away and is lost. It’s also wise to carry an extra ID tag with you in the event your pet accidently loses his.
Be sure that you have a good leash for your pup and an extra one on hand in case one gets lost or falls in the water. Another item that would be helpful is a tie-out and stake so you can safely keep your pup with you outdoors and not have to worry about him wandering off. If you’re going to be staying at a cottage and near a lake or other water source, be sure that your pet has a life jacket in the event you go boating or in case he falls into the water. While most dogs can swim, if he accidently falls in the water he will be frightened and disoriented and a life jacket could save his life.
If you’re planning on spending time on a beach, be sure that you have a large umbrella to give your pet ample shade, and have lots of cold water and a portable bowl with you so he doesn’t become dehydrated. If it’s very hot outside, it’s best that you leave your pet in the cottage or room since pets can suffer from heat stroke.
Most important when travelling with your pet be sure that he is wearing a seat belt to restrain him in your vehicle. If you have to stop suddenly or you’re involved in an accident, your pet will not become a missile and hurt himself or end up wandering on a road or highway. It’s also wise not to let your pet travel with his head out the window. Many dogs seem to enjoy the wind rushing through their fur and ears, but particles or stones from the road could fly up and injure your pup’s eyes or cause an infection in their ears.
So enjoy a nice drive in the country, fresh air and a change of scenery, but be careful and stay safe.