Heading away this Christmas Holidays? Here are some tips to ensure your pet is as comfortable as can be during the journey or if they are staying home.

Often this time of year means celebrations, parties and trips away with family and friends. Remember that your pooch or cat is a big part of the family so keeping them comfortable is just as important. If you decide to leave your pet at home with a carer or friend then consider these things before packing up and heading away.

  • Keep the usual diet your pet receives regularly. Avoid trying too many new treats while you’re away in case they don’t agree with your pet and the carer is left taking your beloved to the vet for treatment.
  • Try and keep routine the same. If your pet is used to walks or eating at particular times, then ask the carer if they can try and keep to this schedule to assist with separation anxiety.
  • Have multiple water bowls around the yard or house.
  • Leave your local vet’s phone number in an accessible place.
  • If your pet is on any medications then show the carer how to administer these prior to you going away.
  • Make sure your pet is up to date with vaccinations, worming, flea and most importantly TICK control while you’re away.

If your pet is travelling with you to your holiday destination….

  • Take a collapsible water bowl with you in the car
  • Make frequent stops for food, water and toilet breaks (for the kids and the pets!)
  • Keep your pet confined to their crate or carrier during car travel and have it positioned where they can get adequate air flow. Some states (such as NSW) require adequate restraint as a mandatory requirement so do your research before travelling!
  • Never leave your pet unattended in the car, even for a moment.
  • At your destination, take time to settle your pet into their temporary space. Crate trained pets do particularly well in new environments as they have the comfort of their ‘safe’ place (their crate) to make them feel at home. Consider crate training your pet in the months leading up to a trip.
  • Have your pet’s vaccinations up to date before you leave and take a copy of the certificate with you.
  • Again, make sure their tick and preventatives are up to date before leaving.
  • Take your pet’s normal food with you, avoid buying a last-minute option.
  • Ensure your pet’s ID tag and microchip details are current.
  • If travelling to the beach with an active dog, avoid ball games in the water. Your dog can end up swallowing a lot of sea water this way and may end up with diarrhea as a result.
  • Keep your pet fresh with the Dr Zoo travel packs, these are great for those beachside showers so that you don’t have to have the ‘wet dog’ smell in the car on the way home.

Lastly, enjoy this very special time with your pet! It’s not every month we get to spend more time at home or away with the furry family members. As we know too well our pet’s live so much in the moment, so let’s take a leaf out of their book and stop sometimes to savour those little things that make us smile!

Happy Christmas!

Dogtor Andy