Expert Advice on Traveling With Pets

Expert Advice on Traveling With Pets

Safe and Stress-Free Travels with Your Furry Friend: Expert Advice on Traveling With Pets

13 Min Read

You should ensure your cat or dog is comfortable and healthy when traveling, especially by plane. With a bit of planning and preparation and our extensive expert advice on traveling with pets, this is achievable.

Experts have some tips and considerations to help ensure your pet’s safe and enjoyable travel. Start by selecting the best carrier for the journey and acclimating your pet before departure.

Expert Advice on Traveling With Pets


Bringing your pet on a trip can be an enjoyable way to explore new places and get some extra exercise. However, it would be best if you planned to keep your pet safe and healthy while traveling.

Before departing, make an appointment with your vet to discuss travel requirements. They can identify which vaccines are necessary and what paperwork is needed for your pet’s flight. Vaccines are essential as they help protect against disease and keep your dog or cat healthy during the journey.

Consult the airline you plan to fly with for their policy on flying pets. They may require a rabies vaccination or have additional rules. Check with the local foreign office at your destination for other requirements and procedures. Get a copy of your pet’s health certificate from the vet, dated within 10 days of your departure.

If you’re flying with your pet, buy a USDA-approved shipping crate that is spacious enough for them to stand, sit, and turn around comfortably. Ensure the crate is waterproof, with good ventilation, strong handles, and a sealed bottom. Label the crate with your pet’s name, address, phone number, and destination.

It’s essential to pack a bag for your pet, containing water, food, toys, a bowl, waste bags, grooming supplies, medication, first-aid, and travel documents, including proof of rabies vaccination. Don’t forget to bring the microchip identification too.

At the airport security checkpoint, take your pet out of its carrier and place it in the bin beside your belongings. This will prevent your pet from being handled roughly and scanned by the X-ray machine.

Remember to bring a leash and harness for your pet when you travel. This will make them more relaxed and comfortable.

Traveling with a pet can be enjoyable for everyone involved. Just make sure you know what to do.

Expert Advice on Traveling With Pets

Keep Your Pet Calm

Traveling with pets can be enjoyable and stressful. No matter the mode of transportation—car, airplane, or train—it is essential to make sure your pet remains tranquil and comfortable throughout the journey.

Essential oils, such as lavender and chamomile, can be used in a diffuser to create a calming atmosphere. Alternatively, place a few drops of these oils on fabric or napkins near your pet to maintain relaxation throughout the ride.

If your dog is anxious or fearful, you have options to help them feel secure. Try aromatherapy, a calming collar or spray, body wraps, herbal stress relievers, or other natural remedies.

You can also keep your pet confined during your trip in a crate approved by the airline. This can make them more relaxed and less anxious, especially if they were crate trained before the flight.

It’s wise to train your dog to be in a crate and stay calm before you travel, according to pet behaviorist Annie Grossman. She recommends starting when they’re a puppy to be better prepared for air travel later in life.

Fill your pup’s crate with their favorite toys and blankets to give them a sense of security during the travel. This can also distract them from the noise and excitement of the flight.

Another way to keep your dog calm during travel is using a pheromone collar or spray. These mimic the hormone pheromone dogs produce to help their puppies relax during their first few weeks of life and can also be effective for older pets who are anxious or nervous.

Herbal stress relievers are another option. They can help your dog relax without sedatives’ potentially dangerous side effects. Chamomile and valerian have been found to relax dogs, but always speak with your vet before giving them to your pet.

Expert Advice on Traveling With Pets

Choose The Right Carrier

When traveling with a pet, selecting a carrier that meets airline regulations and provides comfort for you and your furry companion is essential. From soft-sided to hard-sided, there are many options available.

Before making a choice, check your airline’s pet policy. Some airlines permit passengers to bring small pets on board for free, while others may require a kennel or carrier and an additional fee.

Measure your pet’s height and width to ensure they fit comfortably in the carrier. If they are small, choose one that can compress easily to fit under a plane seat. For larger pets, pick a durable, water-resistant page, and easy to clean, as it will need to withstand scratches and chewing.

Ensure the carrier is breathable, as it will help your pet stay cool in hot or humid weather. Consider the type of materials too: hard plastic is more resistant to weather and more accessible to clean than soft-sided one.

The Duration of Your Trip

It’s important to consider the length of your journey when buying a dog carrier. For longer trips, invest in a carrier that is able to withstand multiple days on the road. Additionally, look for a carrier with an interior pad for comfort. This will prevent your pet’s back from tiring out and provide a safe place to rest or play.

When making your purchase, make sure to choose a carrier that is approved by most major airlines for safety. Some of these options also have added travel conveniences, like slots for attaching them to your suitcase or a seat belt.

Plan Ahead

If you plan to bring your pet along on vacation, do so ahead of time. This will help your cat or dog to enjoy the trip more while ensuring they remain safe and cared for.

First, check if your destination is pet friendly. This way, you won’t waste time and effort on the trip. Many hotels and establishments permit pets—call ahead to confirm your pet policy and reservations.

Then, decide whether to take your pet or leave them at home. If you choose to take them, don’t forget to pack their leash, special food, and toys for the road.

Before traveling, getting a health certificate and vaccinations for your pet is important. If you’re flying, check with the airline to see if your pet can be in the cabin or cargo hold. Your vet can provide recommendations on preparing your pet for the journey and may even offer calming medications.

When traveling by car, secure your pet in a crash-tested carrier or crate with no protruding parts and plenty of ventilation. Put a temporary ID tag and phone number with your address on the pet’s collar in case of separation.

If your trip is lengthy, it’s best to start with shorter journeys and gradually increase the length.

Expert Advice on Traveling With Pets

To Sum Up

Traveling with pets can be an enjoyable and rewarding experience, but if you are not prepared, it can be overwhelming. Whether you’re taking a road trip with your pup or flying with your feline, there are a few things to consider to keep your furry friend safe and comfortable. This article will provide expert advice on traveling with pets, including preparation tips, what to pack, and advice for keeping them secure and relaxed.

Expert Advice on Traveling With Pets: Tips for a Safe and Stress-Free Journey

  1. Plan ahead

Planning ahead is key when it comes to traveling with pets. Here are a few things to consider:

  • Check with your airline or transportation provider to find out their pet policies and requirements.
  • Make sure your pet is up-to-date on their vaccinations and has all the necessary paperwork.
  • If you’re traveling by car, plan your route and stops ahead of time. Make sure there are pet-friendly hotels and rest stops along the way.
  • If you’re flying, book a direct flight if possible to minimize stress and avoid layovers.
  • Consider hiring a pet sitter or boarding your pet if you’re going on a trip that doesn’t allow pets.
  1. Pack for your pet

Just like you, your pet will need a few things to make their journey comfortable. Here’s what to pack:

  • Food and water bowls
  • Food and treats
  • Medications (if applicable)
  • A favorite toy or blanket
  • A leash and collar (with ID tags)
  • A crate or carrier (if required by your airline or transportation provider)
  1. Keep your pet comfortable during travel

Travel can be stressful for pets, so it’s important to take steps to keep them comfortable. Here’s how:

  • Make sure your pet gets plenty of exercise before the trip to burn off excess energy.
  • Bring a familiar blanket or toy to help your pet feel more at home.
  • If you’re traveling by car, make frequent stops to allow your pet to stretch their legs and go to the bathroom.
  • If you’re flying, make sure your pet’s crate or carrier is the appropriate size and has plenty of ventilation.
  • Talk to your veterinarian about medication to help calm your pet during travel, if necessary.


Q: Can I bring my pet on a plane? A: Yes, most airlines allow pets to travel in the cabin or cargo hold. However, there are restrictions and requirements, so it’s essential to check with your airline before you book your ticket.

Q: How can I keep my pet calm during travel? A: Talk to your veterinarian about medication to help calm your pet during travel. You can also bring a familiar toy or blanket to help your pet feel more at home.

Q: What should I do if my pet gets sick or injured during travel? A: If your pet gets sick or injured during travel, seek veterinary care as soon as possible. Make sure you have your pet’s medical records and travel documentation with you.

Conclusion: Traveling with Pets

Traveling with pets can be a wonderful experience if you plan ahead. Expert advice suggests packing for your pet, keeping them comfortable, and enjoying the journey together. Careful preparation and planning can ensure a safe and stress-free trip for you and your furry friend.

You might also want to read about the Benefits of talking to pets.

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