Have Pet, Will Travel

Whether furry, feathered or scaled, pets fill our homes with love—no matter how often we change contracts. Pets of all kinds can be great companions for travel healthcare newbies and pros. And pets of any variety will benefit from these suggestions. Follow our tips below to make moving with your little companion less stressful for everyone.

Plan Ahead

As a healthcare provider, there’s no doubt you have experience in care planning. So, why not do the same for your pet? Consider the following plan for a stress-free pet move:

  • Get a copy of all of your pet’s recent medical records. They may be required by hotels or for air travel. Make sure their vaccinations and rabies tags remain current. Let your current vet know you are moving so your pet’s health reminders find you at your new address.
  • Update your pet’s tags and/or microchip with your new address and contact information.
  • Research pet-friendly hotels and reserve pet rooms if driving by car. Most hotels only have a limited number of pet rooms, so reserve as soon as you know your travel route and schedule.
  • Plan for plenty of bathroom and stretch breaks. Bringfido.com allows you to search for pet-friendly hotels, restaurants and activities along your route.
  • Will you use a travel kennel, pet car seat or pet seat belt new to your pet? Practice trial runs ahead of time to reduce anxiety. If your pet isn’t used to their kennel, start feeding them in their kennel to help them grow fonder of their temporary home.
  • Find a new vet, or at least one that offers emergency vet services, in your new area. You can search American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) website for accredited vet practices.
  • Get a jump on interviewing prospective dog walkers or pet sitters before you move. Screen potential candidates with video interviews and ask them questions about their local knowledge of the best dog parks or vets. Rover.comPetsitter.com and Care.com offer sites pet owners can visit to find pet companions.
  • Resist the urge to throw out old toys, worn pet beds or chewed leashes as you clean out and pack up. These well-loved favorites can help your pet feel less anxious in unfamiliar settings once you have moved.
  • While not always possible, leave a couple of days free after arriving in your new city for you and your pet to settle into your new digs before your first day of work. This will help you both acclimate to new surroundings before adding the stress of you leaving for work.
  • Either before you move or in those first few days, check out dog parks, pet stores and local social media pet-friendly groups to start meeting other pet-lovers like yourself. Dog Park Near Me can help you find new parks to explore and friends to meet.

Keep Calm and Move On

Even though moving may be stressful, you can keep your pet calm when you travel by staying calm yourself. Lower your anxiety by keeping as regular a routine as possible for mealtimes, playtimes and time spent home alone. Once you have arrived at your new home, spoil your pet with attention. Resist the urge to be overwhelmed by move-related details. That breath of fresh air you take on a dog walk, or cat snuggles in a chair, offers good mental health for you and your pet alike.

Planning ahead with these tips will help make traveling to new contracts less stressful for you and your pet. You can help your pet friend feel right at home, no matter where that might be.