Top 5 Dog Travel Concerns

Posted on June 18, 2009 under Dog Insurance

June Pets Best Newsletter – In this issue:
5 Reasons to Promote Pet Dental Health
For a Healthier, Happier Life … Every Pet Deserves Oxyfresh

It’s summer! Keep your dog safe and happy when you hit the road

For many of us summer is travel season; a time when the entire family finally has some precious time together for rest, relaxation and recreation. Of course, if you are a pet owner and lover like me, your dog is likely to be traveling with you. So don’t let poor planning for your dog’s travel turn your vacation into a disaster. Here are some pet travel basics to follow and pitfalls to avoid:

Top 5 Dog Travel Concerns

1. Anxiety: Dogs can be scaredy cats on the road

Some dogs get all excited at the prospect of a car ride. They jump eagerly into the car and watch happily out the window. Others are afraid. They have travel anxiety. These dogs must be dragged into the vehicle and they pant, tremble and stay crouched down for the entire trip. Different feeding times, a strange bed, long car rides, lots of commotion and unfamiliar faces can all be stressors for your pet that can have a wide range of side effects — from having an accident in the vehicle to getting aggressive. Consider a safe and natural supplement to calm your pet. Although supplements are not covered by your Pets Best policy, your small investment could help to make your dog more comfortable.

2. Dehydration: Quench thirst to avoid medical issues

Dehydration in dogs is common during warm weather, travel or any time your dog doesn’t have access to water for an extended period of time. Signs of dehydration range from excessive panting and dry mouth to loss of elasticity in the skin, sunken eyes and exhaustion. Dehydration can occur quickly as a lot of moisture is lost when pets pant from either anxiety or summer heat. Plenty of fresh cool water is essential to maintain proper hydration and organ function and avoid possible heat stroke. Pack water in a sealable container — and don’t forget the bowl.

3. Pet Odors: Never Pleasant on a Trip

If you have had problems with noxious pet odors in your vehicle, you know that getting rid of the odor is very difficult. Traveling in the close confines of an automobile exaggerates odors from pets. Dogs often find unpleasant things to roll in at parks and rest stops and a soiled crate quickly diminishes the air quality. And it’s not just the nasty odor. Pet feces and urine can pose a real health danger to you and your family. Be sure to pack deodorizers and cleaners to keep your pet and your family safe, clean and fresh.

4. Digestive upset: Calm his topsy-turvy tummy
Travel or motion sickness is caused by movement in different directions, particularly when the animal is sitting or standing still in a moving vehicle. It can also happen when there is a loss of visual contact with the outside horizon or due to pressure changes through elevation changes. These events may cause changes in the balance center of the inner ear, leading to fatigue, nausea, dizziness and even vomiting. Your dog is experiencing enough changes during travel season, so try not to alter his normal diet. And include healthy snacks to keep him energized and happy.

5. Emergencies: Be prepared for the unexpected
Medical problems and injuries can be even more difficult to deal with when you are on the road. Be sure to have a pet first aid kit, medical records, your veterinarian’s number and a pet poison control phone number with you at all times. Next, be sure every family member knows where these things are at and that they are readily accessible.

Small efforts in organizing and preparation can pay large dividends for both you and your pet during your next travel. Tips like ensuring access to an online vet locator can help make sure you are prepared for any pet emergencies. Plan ahead for pet-friendly locations and if one of your destinations does not allow pets be sure to have scouted out a nearby boarding facility you are comfortable with and make reservations well in advance.

Now that you are ready, get out and have fun!

-Article submitted by Boyd Harrell, DVM – Oxyfresh Pet Consultant