Traveling With Dogs – Taking Your Pet on Vacation

Heading on your next vacation and want to bring your pooch (or pooches) along? No problem. Thanks to many hotels and resorts responding to the requests of pet lovers, there are many options available to ensure that both you and your pets have a great time on your next vacation.


One of the most important considerations when traveling with your pet is deciding how to travel.

Not all pets make good candidates for air travel. For some, a long car ride isn’t a good option. The decision about what method of travel to use should be made with the well-being of your pet in mind as well as what is most convenient for the two-legged members of your family.

Takin’ To The Skies with Your Dog

If you decide to travel by plane, check with the airline about regulations regarding crate size. There may be different requirements based on breed and not simply size. For example, animals with a flat nose, such as a pug, are sometimes required to have a larger crate than other dogs of similar size. Checking with the airline will help avoid any last minute frustrations.

Quick Plane Tips

  • If you are traveling in a warm climate, try to book your flight in the early morning or evening, when temperatures are coolest. If you’re traveling in a cold climate, book in the afternoon when it is warmest.
  • Try to choose a direct flight. Just like your suitcase, there is less of a chance of the airline misplacing your pet if you fly direct than if you have stopovers. If a direct flight isn’t available, choose the flight with the least number of plane changes.
  • If your dog not crate trained, do not wait until it is time to leave to introduce him to the crate that he will be traveling in. Begin crate training as soon as possible. The more comfortable and secure your pet feels in his crate, the less stressful the plane ride will be for him.
  • If you want to check out recent incidents of pets who were lost or injured on a flight, check out www.

Hittin’ The Streets

Travel by car is often a great choice when including your dog in your vacation plans. Unlike plane travel, car travel allows you to keep an eye on your pet and make sure he is safe and happy.

When choosing to travel by car, even for short distances, it’s important to keep the safety of your pet in mind. As tempting as it is to let your dog sit in your lap, or hang his head out of the passenger window, it’s simply not safe.

In a car, the best place for a dog is in the back seat with a harness or a booster seat that allows the dog to look out the window while still holding him securely in place. These are readily available at most pet supply stores. In a covered truck or SUV, the far back is the best place for your pet. Secured in a crate, or with a grill, your dog will be in the safest place should there be an accident or should you have to brake suddenly.

While the dog may prefer to be in your lap or in the front seat, his safety is more important than his begging. No good parent would let a child ride in a car without a safety seat. In the same way, no responsible pet owner would put his or her pet in unnecessary danger.

Quick Car Tips

  • Be sure you dog has access to water while on the tripMake frequent stops. On long trips, give your pets a chance to get some exercise by making some stops a little longer.
  • Bring along a favorite chew toy or two. Having something constructive to do (such as demolish a rope bone) may help relieve any anxiety your pet may feel as a result of traveling.


Once the journey is behind you, a comfortable place to stay is key to ensuring a pleasant vacation. There are countless sites that offer lists of pet friendly accommodations. Whether you’re looking for a trendy spa, a hotel in town or a cabin high in the mountains, there are businesses that will happily accommodate you and your furry friends.

It’s important to ask questions. Many hotels are listed as “pet friendly” but have very strict rules about leaving the pet alone, having the pet crated at all times and even restrictions on barking (obviously a rule made by someone who doesn’t own a dog!). By asking the right questions, you can ensure a pleasant stay, and not encounter any surprises.

Some questions to ask

  • Is there an extra fee to bring your pet? If so, be sure to find out whether it is per night or a one-time fee.
  • Is there a non-refundable pet deposit?
  • Is there a place nearby to safely walk your dog?
  • Is there a restriction about leaving the dog alone in the room?
  • Are there any special dog-related services such as dog walking or doggy day care available on site?
  • If you are bringing a large dog, be sure to ask about size limits and/or breed restrictions.

The climate in the travel industry seems to be ever more pet friendly. There is no reason that you can’t have a wonderful vacation with your entire family

Before you take your pet on any trip, be sure he is up to date all shots and that he seems healthy.

Happy Tails To You!



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.