Traveling with your dog? Here's What You Need to Pack
Traveling with your dog can be really fun, or it can be really stressful. To prevent stressful situations and be prepared for whatever may come, put thought and time into what you pack. With all the items you might need easily accessible, you can ensure a smooth and enjoyable trip for your pup and you.
- Health Certificate - most airlines and countries require a health certificate within 14 days of travel. This means if you are traveling more than 14 days with your dog, you will need to get a health certificate in your travel location in order to return/continue on your trip.
- Certificate of Vaccination - this is usually more straightforward; some airline require you do this with your health certificate (every 14 days), others don't need it. If you're unsure, just grab one while they're doing the health certificate! Better safe than sorry!
- Vaccination card - most vets give you a card that they use to track your dog's vaccination. They mark on this card all the vaccines the dog has received, on what date, and put each vaccine's sticker on the card as well to certify it was administered. You should plan to always have this card on you! You might need to show it when crossing a border with your dog, dropping your dog at a daycare, bring them on a plane or train, taking them to the vet, etc.
- If your dog is an emotional support or service animal, you will need a doctor's note and a certificate. This is another document I suggest you have on you as much as possible. It is possible you will need to show it if you are trying to enter the airport with your dog on a leash instead of in a cage, etc.
- Good treats - just in case your dog gets scared in the taxi, boat, plane, train, etc, you'll want to have some of your dogs favorite treats available if you need to persuade them into something. Treats can also be useful for keeping your dog calm on a long trip as it gives them something to naw on a bit
- Pre-portioned food - estimate how long you will be traveling until you reach your next destination, and portion out food for each meal you might be traveling during. I keep my dog on her regular meal schedule, so if we're traveling over night she doesn't receive food until her 7:00 am breakfast, like normal.
- Lightweight plastic food bowl - I use plastic Tupperware designed for sandwiches! These have the right dimensions for my pup to easily eat from, while allowing me to snap on the lid and throw it in my bag.
- Lightweight plastic water dish
- Water bottle (if you're flying in areas that allow water on the plane- domestic flights within Peru allow this)
|V's travel crate in an empty seat's legroom|
- Collar with name tags - Your dog should always be with their collar and name tag! If you're traveling internationally, make sure you update the collar to a phone number that someone can still be reached at during your travels. Maybe use a family member in the US or an internationally equipped phone number.
- Harness - I highly recommend traveling with the harness on. It makes it a lot easier to grab your dog if they get into trouble or try an escape. It also makes them look more put together, in my opinion, if it is a service or support animal. You could attached a service/support animal tag to the pack of their harness.
- Leash - even if your dog is good off-leash, there are places where it is required all dogs are on leashes. It also makes the people around you more comfortable.
- Microchip - if you're traveling with your dog, I recommend getting them micro-chipped. Some countries require dogs to be chipped in order to enter the country. So, instead of worrying about which countries and which places require it, just have it done now and never think about it again.
|Snuggling up with Long Boy in an Airbnb|
- Blanky - my puppy has a favorite blanket; I like to bring this with me for many reasons. It can be used to lay down on the floor for her to have a comfy space, to keep her fur off of a seat, to clean up if I spill her water or make some kind of mess, to wrap around her if it gets cold, etc.
- Favorite toy - I always bring Vaquita's favorite toy with us to places I'm afraid she might get scared. Its good for her to have something comfortable with her
|Snuggling up in her sweatshirt and blanky on the plane|
Accident Prevention & Control:
- Peedle pads - I bring these doggy pee pads with me (usually only 1-2 in my backpack as she's pretty well trained) as well as a couple sheets of newspaper.
- Paper towels - I also bring several paper towels in my backpack just in case she goes rogue and pees on something
- Extra hand towel - an extra hand towel is always packed in my bag, just in case. If we get stuck in the rain and I've got a wet dog on my hands, if she makes a mess and I need to clean it up with a towel, etc, etc. Be prepared for the unexpected.
- Cleaning spray - If you have the space, I would also bring a small container of cleaning solution in case your dog goes to the bathroom in a prohibited space