Best Tips For Traveling With Pets

071009garbo-01.jpgSo you've just decided to take your pet with you on vacation. And while the little guy does well on trips to the dog park, you'd like to be as prepared as possible to make the journey comfy. We speak from experience--if you're not all set before you leave, things can turn bad in a heartbeat. Here are our tried and true tips for traveling with pets. And don't forget to let us know how you prepare for the ride after the jump!

  • Bring extra towels and plastic trash bags. Because traveling long distances can be stressful on your pet, you might want to lay a plastic bag underneath the padded floor of the carrier. Just in case Fido gets nervous and wets the carrier, it will stop at the plastic layer. You can then throw away the soiled towels and lay down fresh bedding to make your pet comfortable.
  • Pack a lint roller. Cats shed more when they're stressed so you'll be grateful you can clean yourself up (and behind him) with your handy lint roller.
  • Trim their claws a few days before travel. It's smooth sailing when our dog travels with us in the car but an airplane is another story. When we took our dog on his first plane trip last year, he almost succeeded in clawing his way out of the carrier. Not to mention, if your cat gets spooked, you don't want her scratching you (or anyone else for that matter).
  • If you and your pet do travel by plane, it's best to check your luggage. Because it's standard procedure that you take your animal out of their carrier--you don't want the added worry of keeping up with more bags. For further reading, here's an extended list of tips for pet travel by plane.
  • Stay calm and act relaxed. Pets can sense stress (especially if it's coming from their owner). Bring music to keep you occupied and stress free so your pet stays relaxed. In addition, Abby posted some great lessons on road tripping with your pet here.

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(Image: Beth Zeigler)