Traveling with your dog can be an amazing adventure, provided you prepare for it properly. Unforeseen problems during the trip can not only spoil your vacation, but also end it prematurely.
Think about booking tickets and hotels early
Not all hotels allow pets, so if you leave it to the last minute, you may not find a place that offers pet-friendly accommodations.
Gather information on the requirements of the country you are travelling to
Find out exactly what the requirements are in the country you are travelling to. Some formalities can take several months to complete. Do not be misled by information you hear from friends or found on the Internet. Reliable information can be obtained from the appropriate embassy and the Chief Veterinary Inspectorate.
Prepare documents confirming your pet’s health condition
When travelling in the EU with your dog, you should have a passport with current identification and vaccinations at hand. In order to be issued with a passport, you must have a current rabies vaccination and an electronic chip that allows you to identify your pet. The date of vaccination cannot be earlier than the identification of the pet. Some countries, such as the UK, Ireland, Sweden and Malta, require blood tests for specific diseases, while others again do not allow certain breeds of dogs that are commonly described as dangerous (e.g. pit bulls and Rottweilers).
Ensure a safe and comfortable driving environment for your dog
Do you know how to provide a safe car driving environment for your dog? Regardless of the type of car and the size of your pet, you need to make sure your pet is comfortable and safe in case of a fender bender or a more serious car accident. Small and medium dogs are best secured with special belts on the rear seat or transported in carriers. Large dogs are better transported in the luggage compartment.
Equally important is the psychological comfort of the animal during the car journey. Some dogs easily adapt to wheeled transport, and there are some that are afraid of enclosed space. Certainly it is not worth going on a long journey by car with your pet, if he has not had the opportunity to ride this means of transport before. Therefore, some time before the planned vacation (the sooner, the better) take your pet for short and long rides, so that it has time to get used to the new situation. Teach your dog how to behave in the car, and reward it for exemplary behavior.
Take special care of your dog
Remember that both a car trip and a new place can generate stress for your pet, so he needs much more attention than when you are at home. Make sure that in the new place the dog can easily take care of its physiological needs, protect it from overheating and do not force it to swim in water if it is afraid. Before leaving for a particular country, ask your vet if your dog will be harmed by the local climate and warm sea. For example, hot weather is not suitable for lap dogs, chow chows and other spitz dogs.