When summer is nearly here our thoughts turn to getting away from the humdrum of everyday life, away to balmy sunny days, and a break from our usual routine. If you are wanting to take your dog away on holiday with you, then here are a few tips to make the experience more enjoyable for all of you. Holidays with dogs can be enjoyable if you’re prepared. For some people, it can be comforting to have the same schedule to follow every day, but most of us yearn to get away from it all now and again.
A similar degree of contentment can be said of our dogs with regard to routine, but as long as they are with you then they are happy. Although most times we probably do the same old walk with our dogs, maybe through time constraints or location difficulties, but should you be able to go into the countryside, the woods or a different park, then their excitement is a joy to see.
Holidays For Dogs, What Kind?
Deciding on the type of holiday to take when taking your pooch is really dependant on the individual dog, with regard to their age and temperament.
A younger dog may not mind a camping or boating holiday, whereas an older dog may need more consideration to their well-being and comfort.
Are We Welcome?
There are many dog-friendly holidays these days, but obviously you will have checked that your choice of holiday will take dogs. But it is wise to also ask about any regulations on how many dogs, their size, their breed, and where they are allowed to go. Not forgetting to enquire about the charge, because mostly there is one, and it’s not often that it is free.
Doggie Dining Arrangements
If you choose to go camping, boating or self-catering, then mealtimes shouldn’t be complicated. However, if you want to stay at a guest house, B&B or hotel, then because of Health and Safety regulations, it may present a bit of a problem. Most of these establishments will not allow your dog in the dining room, although you will find the very odd one that does. Taking your meals in your room could be an option if that facility is available. It’s always best to check beforehand what the mealtime arrangements are.
Travelling to Your Holiday
As you would for yourself, think about what your dog will need for the journey. Ideally, a cage in the back of the car with a snug blanket, and the availability of a non-spill water bowl. Alternatively, on a blanketed back seat with a harness on. A toilet stop every couple of hours is good for relieving muscle tension, as well as boredom. You should also avoid feeding your dog for a while before the journey to avoid car sickness.
Dog Holidays Should Be Fun, Take Extra Care
Protect your dog from accidents and illness, third-party liability and damage to property, by taking out insurance. Have your dog microchipped should they go missing, and buying another tag with the holiday home address on it is another precaution worth taking. Also, an up-to-date photograph is a good idea, should the unfortunate happen and you need to show their picture around.
What To Put In Your Doggie’s Suitcase
Get your dog their very own doggy bag to pack all their essentials in, and make a list of all the requirements and check them off, both going and returning, so that you don’t leave anything behind either way.
Paw Design Dog Travel Bag
This useful Dog Travel Shoulder Bag also includes collapsible bowls, one for water and one for food and an additional detachable zippered case which can be used for storing treats or waste bags. It comes in grey/black, grey/pink and grey/blue.
- Bed – So they don’t get on the furniture or your bed.
- Sheet/blanket – In case they are used to being on your settee/ bed and you can’t keep them off.
- Food – It may be difficult to get their usual food, causing a possible dodgy tum.
- Food bowl – For hygiene.
- Plastic doggie placemat – For slapdash eaters and drinkers.
- Collapsible water bowl – When travelling.
- Plastic bottle for water – When out and about.
- Paper towel – For any spills or unfortunate tiddle accidents.
- Dog brush – Groom them to try and lessen the hair left in the property.
- Clothes brush – In case of dog hair on furnishings.
- Toys – For familiarity and fun.
- Towels – Take plenty for wet muddy fur and paws.
- Poo bags – To collect poo for the barbecue…only joking!
- Jacket – To keep them warm and dry.
- Lead and collar – Obvious, but could be forgotten.
- Car harness – For safety in the car.
- Corkscrew tether – To keep them safe while you’re enjoying yourself.
Where Am I?
Dog’s do not have the same awareness as ourselves, and plonking them in a totally strange environment could make them become stressed. Although most dogs will adapt very well, it is important that you don’t leave them alone, and it is usually a requirement by holiday companies anyway.
Dog Stress Reliever
Doggie Day Care
Sometimes on holiday you may want to go somewhere that you can’t take your dog. Leaving them in the car is most definitely not a possibility, due to the risk of overheating or being stolen. If the option of kennelling them at your holiday place is not available, then research kennels in the vicinity when booking your holiday.
While You’re Away
Even if your dog is good off the lead at home, it would be sensible not to let them off while you’re away. There are unfamiliar hazards and all manner of things that could spook them when they’re out of their comfort zone, leading to a possible disaster. Make a note of the local vet’s number and the directions. Be safe, not sorry!
Take A Day Trip
Do your research before you go to find dog-friendly pubs, beaches and walks and print off the details. On some beaches, dogs are only allowed at certain times of the year.
Don’t forget to take water for your dog because it is not advisable to allow them to drink from any other source (puddles and streams etc.), for fear of contamination. Take a plentiful supply of poo bags, you can get a 100 scented baby nappy bags for the purpose at a reasonable price.
A holiday away with your dog can be a mutually enjoyable event. Fun and adventure to be had by both the two and four-legged beings alike, as long as you go prepared.