It is often said that a dog is a man’s best friend, and if you’re one of the estimated 8 million households with a canine companion, you will know just why this is so true.
Dogs really end up becoming part of the family, which is why it is hardly surprising that more people than ever are choosing to bring their beloved pets on holiday. While you can take your furry friend with you abroad, we still consider renting a dog-friendly holiday cottage the best option since there’s usually enough space outside and no need to worry about tricky flights.
Prepare Your Pet’s Holiday in Advance
Preparation is key if you plan to travel with your furry friend. Ensure that you have as much information as possible on the cottage and the surrounding area before setting off and making a list of all the things you will likely need. It is very good advice and a bit of forward planning will ensure that the holiday goes smoothly and your furry friend stays healthy and happy.
Here are 8 tips for taking your dog on holiday:
1. Check that the Cottage Will be Suitable for Your Pet
It really goes without saying that you will have to select a dog-friendly holiday cottage, but it is also important to check that the size of the property will be suitable for your pet and there’s enough space outside for your specific breed. Prefer the amenities that come with a hotel? Don’t worry there are plenty of hotels that accept dogs, many welcome them and have specific pet friendly facilities that make your stay with your dog as comfortable as possible.
It can also be a good idea to check whether there are any restrictions, such as areas that may be off-limits for pets or even a limit on the number of pets you are allowed to bring along if you have more than one.
2. Plan the Journey in Advance
Keep in mind that if you will be making a long journey by car that you take a bowl along with some water with you and have plenty of stops, especially on those hot days. Ensure that your furry friend is able to stretch his or her legs and gets some fresh air at regular intervals. If your four-legged friend isn’t used to traveling, you should try them on shorter car journeys beforehand.
3. Avoid Running Out of Supplies
Try making a checklist of all the things that your dog might require before setting off and ensure that you have sufficient food, medication, treats, and poo bags, which are incredibly important. It is also important to take your dog’s collar and lead, which should have a tag with your contact details.
If you don’t like the idea of taking too much stuff with you, it can be advisable to check where you can buy dog food locally at your destination, especially if you prefer sticking to certain brands and what items will be available at the cottage.
4. Make the Cottage a Home Away from Home for Your Dog
Your beloved pet will likely be unsettled when he or she first arrives, so it can be a good idea to take as many of his/her things as possible. Familiar items such as your pet’s own bed, toys, and blankets can make a huge difference since the last thing you want is for them to feel upset and worried.
Show your furry friend the new surroundings and allow them to explore (if and where appropriate) so that they start feeling at home within the shortest time possible. Dogs are usually creatures of habit so stick to their routine of walk and feed times where possible.
5. Get the Contact Information of a Local Vet
You will hopefully never have to contact a vet on holiday, but if your beloved pet falls or gets hurt while you are away, it is always good to be prepared. Research vets that are close to the cottage where you will be staying and keep their details close by throughout your stay.
It can also be a good idea to take your pet to your regular vet before you travel to ensure that they have a clean bill of health and are fully up-to-date with vaccinations along with other treatments such as worming.
6. Keep Your Pet Safe
The last thing you would ever want is for something to happen to your pet, which is why you need to ensure that the cottage and garden are both secure and there’s nowhere for them to escape.
Going for walks with your furry friend through the beautiful countryside is just one of the perks of taking them with you, but it is always advisable to be highly vigilant. If you take your dog off the lead, you must ensure that there aren’t any dangers around such as wild animals, streams, or even cliff edges.