French Bulldog puppy sitting on suitcasesUnderstandably, many dog lovers want to bring Fido with them wherever they go. In response to this demand, hip canine hot spots have sprung up all over the country. It’s no wonder pet owners are looking for dog friendly vacation ideas, as well. Here are some of our top tips for a vacation that’s sure to (bow) wow.

10 Tips to Create a Dog Friendly Vacation

  1. Safety first! Whether you’re flying or driving, keeping your dog safe is the number one rule of the road. Prepare for long car rides with a crate or seatbelt harness, plenty of fresh water, and frequent rest stops. Since air travel is more complex, we suggest using a pet travel agency and consulting with our team before you leave. Vaccinations and a thorough assessment of health is essential to traveling with your pet.
  2. “Dog friendly” isn’t always guaranteed. Just because a venue claims to be dog friendly doesn’t mean it will be a good experience for your pet. Check out your lodging, dining, and entertainment options thoroughly. Is there a place to walk, play, and take potty breaks? Is the venue really appropriate for your pup pal?
  3. Have a backup plan. Perhaps an activity seems great online but doesn’t work for your pet in reality. Maybe you see a cool activity for yourself that wouldn’t be all that cool for your dog. Instead of taking the risk, keep a few pet resorts in mind for safety and assurance while you’re out doing your thing.
  4. Never underestimate the power of microchipping. You may have secure ID tags on your pet’s collar, but sometimes these get lost. The best way to be reunited with a missing pet is to opt for a microchip.
  5. Check out dog specific getaways. If you really want to experience a Fido friendly vacation, go for one that’s tailored to dogs and their owners (check out Woofstock!).
  6. Consider a staycation. There’s nothing wrong with staying close to home, especially when there are numerous activities you can explore together. Check out the National Forest website for cool camping spots or grab a bite to eat on a dog friendly patio.
  7. Know your pet’s personality. Not all dogs adore other dogs. Not all dogs dig strangers. If this sounds like your pet, you may want to think twice about an urban vacation or going someplace your pup is sure to encounter others. Instead, head to a low key bed and breakfast in the country or some other quiet destination.
  8. Be committed to dog time. No matter where you roam, your pet still needs one-on-one time for daily walks, snuggles, and grooming. Make sure to provide at least an hour of doggy attention each day, especially if your pal is being boarded during human-only activities.
  9. Pack for success. Travel is a massive change in and of itself. Keep some consistency in your pet’s routine by packing his or her regular food, treats, toys, bed, and other daily care items.
  10. Be a courteous pet owner. Not all people appreciate the tail-wagging greeting of your dog (hard to imagine, but it’s true). Be respectful of others by picking up after your pet and keeping him or her calm and well-behaved.

To make sure your pet is in tip-top shape for travel, schedule an appointment with The Pet Experts at Naperville Animal Hospital.