Our dogs can be our children or our children’s best friends, so we couldn’t possibly leave them behind all the time! Over 30 million of us take our pets away each year, and you may want to start to travel with yours too. Here are our top tips for travelling with Dogs.
Tips for before embarking on your travels
Check-in with your vet
It is always best to check the health of your dog over with the vet before travelling, especially if they are flying. Whilst you are there, get a health certificate. Not all airlines will require this, but it is best to be safe and have it with you.
Update their contact info
Make sure your dog has the most up to date contact information on them or in their microchip, just in case the worst were to happen. They will be in unfamiliar territory after all.
Check with your destination country…
If you are leaving South Africa you must check the restrictions for bringing pets into the county. Some may require that your dog has been quarantined for certain periods of time before you travel. Some may not allow it at all.
And your home country…
South Africa has restrictions on bringing animals into the country from abroad, even if they were originally from the country. Again, check.
Take them for a long walk
It is best to take your dog on a long walk before you set off on your travelling. This should keep them a little calmer whilst travelling (or hopefully asleep!)
Take away the water bowl
We recommend that you take your dog’s water bowl away a couple of hours before you leave. This may seem a tad cruel, and we do not suggest you do not give them any water for the rest of the trip! It will help lower the chances of accidents during the trip. Keep giving them water throughout the trip, but make sure it is just small sips rather than large, long gulps.
Hot (or cold) Dogs
Are you traveling to a location with a different climate from home? Make sure you are prepared for the change for your pup.
What to pack for traveling with your dog:
Dog bed: Many dogs like their own routine, so packing their creature comforts are a must. We recommend that you take one of their beds from home. This will help calm them.
Collapsible bowls: For when they are needing food and water on the go but will take up less space! Also remember a bottle of water for them, just in case you do not have access to water at any time.
Puppy pads: You must obviously allow time for your dog to relieve themselves during your trip, however accidents happen, especially when the journey is long! Puppy pads are a great help, especially in airports when there is no other option
Treats: This may seem a little obvious, but it is also easy to forget. Your pup could easily become nervous by its new surroundings or need to be coaxed into certain unfamiliar areas. Treats will help!
Toys: Keep them happy and entertained with some of their favourite toys.
Planning to fly with your dog?
Check the airline for sizes
Airlines have different restrictions on the size of the pet you are traveling with. Unless your dog is a service dog (which have their own rules and restrictions), the airline has specified travel crate sizes for inside the cabin.
Get a health certificate from the vet
As mentioned earlier, the airline may not require one but taking a health certificate with you when you fly with your pet will keep them happy just in case it is asked for.
We are sure that your trip with your dog will be one of the best trips. Make sure to stick with these tips and everything should go smoothly. For any information on travel insurance, be sure to get in touch with our travel insurance experts