How to travel safely with pets

How to travel safely with pets
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For many of us a holiday just wouldn't be complete without our pets so if you’re planning on a summer break here in the UK, there is no reason why your pets can’t join in the fun too! Taking an animal on long car journeys can be stressful so fetch.co.uk have provided their top tips on how you can travel safely together.

1.  Prepare your kennel

Ensure that the crate you purchased when your pet was tiny is still roomy enough for them. Can they stand up without hitting their head on the top of it? And do they have enough room to move around? You should always run these checks before attempting to travel with your pet. In the vast majority of cases your pet will travel in the back of your car, not in the front with you. Fetch’s Petmate Vari Kennel (RRP: £19.99 - £21.99) assembles in minutes, has vents on the back and side walls to keep your pets cool whilst travelling and an easy open squeeze latch door.

2. Pack food and water

Just like us, our pets get dehydrated when they are travelling. A handy tip: freeze water before you leave home to ensure your four-legged friend has water for your journey. Try Fetch’s travel water bottle (RRP: £2.29 - £2.99) to keep your pet fully hydrated on any extended travel periods or particularly long walks.

3. Seat belts and car safety

If you're driving, it’s worth remembering that seat belts are not just for us humans. Pets also require safety belts which are similar to a harness that fits around your pet’s body, with a clip that goes into the car seat belt socket, ensuring your pet is kept safe at all times.
In some countries, it is illegal for your dog to sit in the front of the car. To make sure you are following safety regulations ensure your pet always sits in the back of the car, allowing them more room to spread out or sit down. The Kurgo Enhanced Tru-fit Harness (RRP: £18.90 - £24.30) has been developed to provide safety and comfort for your dog whilst in the car and out walking. The Kurgo Tru-fit Harness is easy to use and contains chest pads for added comfort.

4. Keeping your dog calm during travel

Make sure you bring your dog’s blanket or his favourite stuffed animal, toy, bone - any item which is familiar to your dog to help comfort and relax him. For a little extra help keeping particularly anxious pets calm, try Zylkene Caps 450mg 20 per pack (RRP:£25.72). Useful to help pets cope when facing unusual situations or a change from their normal environment. Starting several days before you are due to travel, open the capsule and mix the powder with food or their favourite treat.

5. Prepare for the unexpected

Flexibility and patience are virtues that every traveller should possess. The same holds especially true when travelling with pets. Whether your car is stuck in traffic, your dog gets sick mid-journey, or your cat decides he can’t wait for the kitty litter – travelling
 with pets can be hard work. In case of any emergencies The Options Hi Travel First Aid Kit (RRP: £11.89)  is a must-have for animals on the move. The kit helps provide aid and comfort to an injured or sick pet.

6. Protect your pet - vaccinate before boarding 

Kennel facilities place pets in close proximity, increasing the risk of passing on infections. This makes vaccinations an essential part of preparing your dog for kennels. Vaccinations help protect your pet by stimulating their body to produce antibodies to specific often contagious and even lethal diseases. If your pet should later come into contact with a disease they are vaccinated against the antibodies will protect them. Vaccinations may be given over a two to three-week course and immunity may take days or weeks to develop afterwards. You should consult the boarding facility and your vet in advance to find out the requirements and timescales involved for vaccinations.

  • Tips from Fetch’s resident vet Angela Rodger.
  • There's more pet advice in every issue of Yours magazine, out every fortnight on a Tuesday.