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Traveling with Your Pets

Summer’s approach brings thoughts of the family travel vacation. Whether it’s by car, by sea or by air, pets are going everywhere.

Make sure your pet is healthy with a veterinary visit. A health certificate is wise to carry when crossing state lines and required for international borders. Many state and federal parks require proof of rabies vaccination.

Traveling by car is lots of fun with the proper preparation. Ensure your pet has a safe place such as a crate or a pet safety belt. Make sure your pet is properly identified with a name tag and your cell phone number. Microchips are also a smart choice. Never open the car door until your pet is properly leashed.

Feed them at least two hours before your journey starts and not while traveling to lessen the chance of an upset stomach. Small amounts of water should be available. A chew toy will keep them occupied. Stop every hour or so for a little walk and potty break and after four hours make longer stops for food and a longer walk. Never leave them unattended; heat stroke happens quickly. Many hotels allow pets so check beforehand when making reservations.

As air travel has gained in popularity, it has also become more complicated. Carriers require a certificate of acclimatization when the temperature is forecast to exceed 85 degrees or fall below 20 degrees. Also, many airlines will not accept snub-nosed pets, like bulldogs or Persian cats, as cargo since they are prone to breathing problems. Airlines limit the number of pets in the cabin, so don’t wait until the last minute to book.

With the proper planning your pet can have a summer vacation, too.

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