Road Trip Safety for Pets
Your pet is a part of your family, so when it’s time to take that summer road-trip you, naturally, want to include your pet in the vacation. More than likely, your pet will enjoy his or her time on the road, but you’ll need to take a few precautions to ensure that your pet’s experience in the car is a positive one. Here are our tips when it comes to road trip safety for pets.
Just as you and your family are expected to be safely restrained on that long car ride, the same should go for your pet. Leaving a pet unharnessed or unrestrained in the car could allow for a number of problems; such as moving from seat to seat during travel or jumping into the driver’s lap as the car speeds down the interstate. Either of these situations could cause a major accident that would not only endanger your own family but also the lives of other innocent people.
Rest Stops and Water Breaks
Even humans need plenty of rest stops during long car rides, and your pet is no different. Give your pet the chance to answer the call of nature, stretch his or her legs, and drink some water in order to stay hydrated and feeling refreshed. Taking your pet for a short walk at the rest area is a good way to keep your pet happy and less stressed about his or her time in the car. You may also want to look for dog parks and pet-friendly rest stops, instead of letting your dog out at the gas station parking lot.
ID Tags or Microchips
Always have your pet’s ID tags on his collar, and activate your pet’s microchip before leaving the house for any trip. Although your pet will be spending most of the time in your presence during the car ride, your pet may run off or become lost during the rest stops or once you reach your destination.
Motion Sickness and Avoiding Infections
If your pet is more sensitive to car travel, consult your veterinarian before your departure; there may be something we can be prescribe to help with your pet’s motion sickness. Also, limit the amount of time that your pet rides with his or her head out of the window. Prolonged exposure to the rapidly moving air and potential debris can cause ear, lung, and eye infections.
Emergency Care Plan
Make note of the vet clinics and hospitals that will be available to you on your trip, not only during the drive but also once you’ve reached your destination. Call ahead and speak with the veterinarian staff to see if the practice you have chosen for your emergency pet care needs has the services you are looking for.
Avoiding Heat Stroke
The temperature inside your vehicle can drastically increase throughout the day, especially if traveling with a lot of people. The heat can become even more unbearable for your pet if he or she is restrained in a carrier or travel case. Make sure the air conditioning is on or that the windows are rolled down enough to allow air flow within the vehicle during any car ride, especially extended car rides. And, as always, never, ever, leave your pet unattended in a parked car, even if it is just for a minute.
Your pet will love the chance to accompany you and the family on your family, especially when you take the extra steps to ensure that his or her time in the car is peaceful and relaxing. But be sure to extend the same courtesies to your pet as you would the human members of your family by taking safety precautions as well as allowing for such things as water breaks and rest stops.
If you have any other questions or concerns about traveling with your pet, or if you need to bring your pet current on his or her vaccinations and parasite preventative before you hit the road, please don’t hesitate to give us a call.
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Schertz Animal Hospital
Since 1976, Schertz Animal Hospital has offered the greater San Antonio area outstanding pet care. Our state-of-the-art animal hospital in Schertz, TX compliments our stress-free handling and experienced veterinary staff. Make an appointment online or give us a call at (210) 659-0345 today!