AD | Pet parents will no doubt agree that owning a four-legged friend is equal pets rewarding and stressful, perhaps no more so than when it comes time for a holiday. There is always the question of what will you do with your pet? Who will you leave them with? How much will a kennel charge for boarding? Is it even worth going away in the end?

Taking Your Pets on a Weekend Break: Pug on the back of a sofa

Photo by sarandy westfall on Unsplash

Thankfully, you can put your mind at ease and do away with many of these worries by taking your dog along with you. If you are not prepared for the paperwork and hassle of taking your pet abroad, then instead you can plan a weekend break in the country, where they can join you without needing a pet passport. To get your break off you the right start, here are some things you’ll have to do beforehand if you are planning on taking your pet along.

Find a Pet-Friendly Hotel

One of the first and most important things you’ll have to sort out before taking your pooch along with you on a weekend getaway is finding a dog-friendly hotel. Choosing a hotel can be difficult as it is, without the added hassle of finding one which will allow pets; thankfully there are now plenty which do, with pet-friendly hotel options ranging from budget through to luxury offerings.

Don’t Forget to Pack the Essentials

We all get caught up in the packing frenzy as soon as our departure date rolls around, but don’t forget that your pooch will have some packing of their own to do too. Or rather, some packing that you’ll have to do for them. Taking along the essentials, and a few of your pet’s favourite toys will go a long way in making them feel comfortable in a strange environment and help them get settled in their home away from home.

The top of your doggy travel essentials should, of course, be their food, bedding, any medication they need, and a spare lead. If your pooch tends to shed a lot, you’ll also want to make sure that you’ve packed some grooming supplies. Along with some home comforts like their favourite toy and blanket.

Keep a Planned Schedule

Understandably, while you are away for the weekend, your routine will be very different from your schedule at home. Which can be difficult for your pet to adjust to. However, trying to maintain your pet’s usual routine as closely as you can while you’re away will go a long way in minimizing any anxiety or stress they experience being in an unfamiliar location. After all, a calm and relaxed pooch will make your weekend getaway far more enjoyable for everyone involved.

How to Safely Transport Your Pet

Remember that travelling can be just as stressful for your pooch as it is for you, if not more so. Whether you are driving to your final destination, hopping on a train, or taking a ferry, it’s important that you know how to safely transport your pet in order to minimize any stress this could cause them, and avoid any potential injuries.

For a shorter stay, like a weekend break, you’ll likely be driving to your location. In which case here are some guidelines for keeping your pet safe during the journey.

  • Ensure that your dog is securely restrained while in the car. In a manner which won’t distract whoever is driving, and will not cause your pet any injury should the car suddenly stop.
  • If you are transporting your dog in a crate or container, ensure that they have enough room to comfortably stand up to full height, easily turn around, and lie down in a comfortable position. You should also ensure that there is some bedding in the crate to keep your dog comfortable. And that they have plenty of ventilation.
  • For larger dogs, consider using a harness. This can be secured to your car’s seat belt system, rather than transporting them in a crate.

Have you ever taken your dog on holiday? What tips would you suggest to make the holiday as stress free as possible?

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  1. These are some great tips. And are all things you should consider before traveling with pets. One thing I try to when I make my travel plans is to pick places where they can come too. So they don’t spend all day in the hotel room.

  2. Lots of important things to think of in this post. We make lots of trips with our “furkids”. The one thing we never leave home without is a good supply of their regular water. You’d be surprised how badly different water can upset a little tummy and spoil a trip.

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