Pets make for great travel companions, especially for people who can’t bear leaving their furry friends behind at home. Travel becomes more adventurous, and encouraging outdoor activity becomes easier.

Planning ahead can ensure both you and your pup have an enjoyable journey together. Use these tips for pet-friendly travel planning!

1. Make Sure Your Dog is Comfortable

Anxiety-inducing car rides may make some dogs anxious; this may make them pant and sweat excessively as well as become restless and restive.

There are a few steps you can take to keep your pet comfortable when traveling with you.

Make sure your pet feels secure by placing them in a travel crate or carrier and placing it in a safe area of the car, said Bernal. Show them it’s okay for them to travel there safely.

If your dog is new to riding in a car, taking some practice drives with him might help get them used to being inside. Consider ending the drive by visiting their favorite dog park or store so as to make their experience even more pleasurable.

2. Take It for a Long Walk

One of the best ways to get exercise with your pup is taking her for a long walk – not only will this burn calories but it can be an opportunity to bond!

Long walks have many health advantages, from improving posture to relieving stress and increasing blood flow – not to mention providing hours of fun! To make the most out of your time on the trail, be sure to wear clothing appropriate to the weather conditions; this will prevent overheating and sore muscles upon returning home, and eating well-balanced meals after your hike if it lasts more than 24 hours.

3. Make Sure Your Dog’s Food Is Included

No matter where your travels take you, make sure your pet stays nourished by bringing enough food. How much you bring depends on their size and length of flight; but always pack enough to last until your final stop.

Before traveling with your pet, always consult the airline’s website for their policies on pet travel. This will ensure you bring only what’s allowed, while taking note of any additional paperwork or requirements that might be needed.

Be mindful that airlines may impose restrictions on what food items can be brought on board. In general, dry food should be permitted, though certain airlines may prohibit you from bringing canned or raw food products onto the plane. Furthermore, it’s a good idea to double check each airline’s policy prior to flying if possible.

4. Get a Pet Carrier

When planning an adventure with your furry companion, getting them an appropriate and safe pet carrier can make all the difference. A pet carrier is a small portable box, crate or cage designed specifically to transport animals of various sizes – which makes your trip much less daunting!

Quality pet carriers should feature a loading door, ventilation slots, exterior pockets and comfortable straps or handles – plus they should meet airline travel regulations and have been crash tested.

An attractive, sturdy carrier is an essential component of any trip with your pet, and there are numerous choices on the market to meet both your lifestyle, budget and pet’s needs.

5. Take Your Dog to the Vet

An annual wellness exam for your dog at the vet can help ensure their wellbeing and up-to-date vaccinations, including rabies.

Your pet’s vet will examine its eyes and ears, listen to their heart and lungs, perform an examination of their teeth and recommend any necessary diet changes, exercises or medications as part of this examination.

Air travel should not be recommended for pets, particularly dogs with brachycephalic faces like bulldogs and pugs; their short nasal passages could result in heat stroke and oxygen deprivation, potentially posing serious threats to their wellbeing.

If you must fly, check with your veterinarian to identify pet-friendly airlines and bring any medications they require, such as heartworm or flea preventives, to make their journey more comfortable and less likely to cause an upset stomach.