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How to travel with a pet

When you are travelling with your pet, you have to choose the best option that is safest and most comfortable for your pet. We should note that it is best to leave your pet at home and hire a dog or cat sitter, but we do understand that sometimes it is impossible to leave your pet at home when you go on a vacation and especially if you are moving across the country. 

If it has been determined that you do need to bring your pet along for a trip, here are a few tips on how to travel with them in a car or in an airplane.

By Car

Here are the best tips for travelling with a cat and/or a dog while you are driving.

Don’t let your dog roam

Especially during long drives, the best way to travel with a dog is to keep them in a crate that is securely anchored down. This prevents your dog from roaming around and distracting you while you drive. However, these crates aren’t reliable for keeping your dog safe during a crash, so always drive with more caution and care when driving with your furry companion.

Bring another human to keep your pet company

If you are able to, find a friend or family member who is willing to travel with you so they can keep an eye on your pet during the drive. They can make sure they have enough water and food and can inform you if your pet is getting antsy so you can make a pit stop to let them stretch and use the bathroom.

Keep your cat in the carrier

Most cats hate travelling by car, so to keep them and yourself safe during the trip, keep your cat in their carrier at all times. You should also strap the carrier with a seatbelt to ensure that it doesn’t roll around or move too much while you drive. 

Never leave your pet unattended in your car

If you need to use the washroom or make a quick pit stop, never leave your pet unattended in your car. If it’s really hot outside, your car can heat up 20 degrees hotter than the temperature outside, which will cause internal damages to your pet if they are exposed to these conditions for even 30 minutes. This is why you should always travel with a friend so they can walk your dog while you run in to get food, water or to use the bathroom.

Travelling by plane

If you need to travel with your pet by plane, here are the best tips to ensure their safety. You should note that most airlines won’t allow you to travel with your pet if they are younger than 12 weeks old and if they aren’t fully weaned.

Ask if your pet can travel with you

If you have a cat or a small dog, most airlines will allow you to keep your carrier underneath your seat as long as it can fit comfortably. Call your airline ahead of time to ensure this option is available to you.

If your pet is too big, they may have to travel in the cargo hold. If this happens, make sure you do the following:

  • Book a direct flight
  • Request to travel on the same flight
  • Tell the captain your pet is in the cargo hold
  • Don’t feed your pet for four to six hours before the trip
  • Don’t fly with your pet during busy vacation times

A lot of airlines will have different rules when it comes to travelling with a pet, so make sure you ask them everything you need to know before your flight. You should also only travel with your pet by plane if you have no other options.

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