Summer is in full swing, and many of you probably have plans for a vacation. If you’re like me, packing is something to be done at the last possible minute, and with very little forethought or strategy. Common sense, in fact, rarely comes into play. It’s not unusual for me to discover that I have packed toothpaste, but no toothbrush. And it should be obvious that when bringing running shoes I should also bring socks, yet I cannot tell you how many times I have had to buy emergency, often absurdly high-priced socks in a small coastal-town shop (this is what I get for foolishly attempting to exercise on vacation). I have suffered through many a self-inflicted packing oversight, but when traveling with my dog I try to be much more careful since I know he is depending on me for his happiness and safety.
Here are a few tips and reminders for traveling with pets:
1. Before heading out of town, make sure your pet is up to date on his shots and vaccinations, and that he is in good health and fit for travel
2. Check that his license and other identification (name tags, microchips, etc) are current
3. Identify the name, address and phone number of a veterinary clinic in the area you will be visiting (and then, actually remember to bring that info with you!)
4. Pack your pet’s bed, or a blanket or towel so your pet will have something familiar and comfortable
5. Make sure you have a pet emergency kit so you are prepared to deal with minor injuries
6. Bring more pet food than you think you need. It’s better to pack too much than run the risk of running out.
7. Pack an extra collar and leash (my dog once chewed through his leash and I ended up having to buy a new one with pastel seashells on it- at the same store where I bought my running socks)
8. Bring a current photo of your pet- if for some reason your pet becomes lost, this will be helpful when organizing search efforts
If you have more items to add to this checklist, please use the comment form below to share them.
P.S. For this post I had planned on including a photo of my dog taken during a recent trip to the beach, only I don’t have any, since I forgot to pack my camera…