Traveling with a dog is no easy mission. Along with pet visas and other documents, you need to consider how your pet will cope with such a journey. It can be difficult for some humans, so just imagine how your four-legged friend feels after an airplane or train ride! Whether you’re planning to travel with your dog by car, plane, train, or any other mode of transport, here’s how to make sure they are calm afterward.
Ask Your Vet About Anti-Anxiety Meds
If you have a particularly anxious pet, especially one that has struggled with traveling in the past, consider asking your vet about anti-anxiety meds. Don’t worry – your dog won’t be prescribed anything he can’t handle! It might just help him get through the journey without feeling too stressed. Look around for a local vet that provides impeccable pet care for a reasonable price.
Give Them Lots of Attention
Once you and your dog have finished the trip, you must focus on your dog and give them as much attention as possible. If they are not used to traveling, they will likely be scared and confused, and your presence will help ease those nerves. Give them lots of pets and speak to them softly to reassure them that everything is OK. Before long, they will likely act like their usual self again.
Take Shorter Trips Beforehand
The first journey a dog takes (apart from the initial journey to its owner) should not be a long one. Don’t dive into the deep end by taking your dog on a three-hour plane in the first few months of having him. Instead, get your dog used to traveling by taking shorter trips in the early days. That way, once you need to take a longer trip, it will be easier to calm him down afterward.
Give Them a Comfort Toy
A comfort toy is crucial for both during and after traveling. Your dog needs something that looks and smells like home so that he feels safe, and a toy will do just that. Don’t just bring one, either – bring a few so that he never gets bored. Once you’ve arrived at your destination, you can then play with your dog to make him feel better again.
Stick to a Routine as Much as You Can
Whatever your reason for traveling, you should stick to your dog’s usual routine as much as possible. That means if you feed him at 9am and 5pm, you should do just that even when traveling (if you can). Doing so will give your dog a feeling of normalcy, and you won’t add to his stress by shifting his usual schedule. Extra tip: if you are taking your dog somewhere new for a short while, be sure to give him a comfortable space where he can relax and sleep without disruption.
Traveling with a dog isn’t always easy, especially if your dog gets scared often. Calming him down afterward will help the next journey go much smoother, though. As long as you are there to calm him down, he will feel much better before long.