Should Your Pet Take a Vacation or Staycation?
20th September 2015
Oh the decisions we pet-parents have to make! Planning a vacation should be a fun experience, but for some of us it includes making difficult decisions regarding our furry best friends. If you already know your pet isn't a good traveler, the choice is already made for you—find a good pet-sitter or boarding kennel. However, if your pet (or you!) suffer from separation anxiety, you may decide to bring your little buddy along with you.
The Happy Feline Traveller
We know a kitty who loves the car. Jazz happily traveled with her pet-parents on a three-day road trip in the back seat of their compact car. Her bed separated her water bowl and her litter box, and she contentedly napped, drank, used her box and visited up-front to sit on mom's lap throughout the driving hours. She thoroughly enjoyed her pet-friendly hotel room, with its huge window and wide ledge, where she watched her parents cool off in the pool two stories below.
The Anxious Stay-at-Home Cat
Jazz’s very nervous older brother Odin, who hates the car (and everything else unfamiliar), was quite relieved to discover he’d be having a staycation at home with Granny and Grampa. His days were filled with leisurely naps on Grampa’s chest, lots of delicious treats from Granny, and plenty of play time from both. We think he was happy to be rid of his sister for a few days, too—he seemed to really enjoy all the “I’m-an-only-cat” attention!
Dogs Need Vacations, Too
Last year's vacation at dog-friendly Tallow Beach, New South Wales, was a slice of doggy heaven for Spike and Izzy, a laid-back Pug and a spirited Golden Retriever respectively. They spent their days splashing in the surf, digging in the sand and playing fetch with their humans. "They travelled well in the van for the three hours it took us to get there, and completely collapsed at the end of each day, delightfully exhausted by their beach adventures," said pet-mom Melanie. "It was nice to see them enjoying their holiday, too!"
It all depends on your pet and how well (or how badly) they will adapt to their travel situation. So which pets travel well and which don't?
- Typically, dogs tend to be the most easygoing travelers, while cats can be more anxious. Much depends, however, on the pet's personality traits.
- Leave birds, reptiles and caged animals, such as hamsters and bunnies, at home. They are frail and do not travel well.
- Try to avoid travelling with very young animals (such as puppies and kittens under five months), pregnant, old, sick or injured pets, or those that have “behavioural” problems.
If you're boarding Fluffy or Fido, be sure to get first-hand recommendations from family and friends, and check online reviews, too. If they have to fly (not our first choice), make sure you acclimatize your pets to their carrier crate well in advance of the departure date.
So … book a pet-friendly hotel if your pet is coming along for the ride, or do your research and find the perfect boarding situation if your best buddy would rather stay home. Making the right decision ensures everyone enjoys their vacation!
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