Over the summer months, it feels like everyone is going on a summer holiday, taking some time away to enjoy a new environment and some fresh weather.
However, it can be a little trickier for pet owners who want to bring their beloved dog along for the ride. Along with the requirement to register their microchip and keep it updated, travelling is a very new experience for many dogs and can lead to a degree of agitation and anxiety.
Taking your dog on holiday is an exercise in gradual exposure to the change in environment that inherently comes as a consequence of travelling on holiday.
Start off with the crate or dog carrier. Make sure it is big enough for them to stand, lie down and turn around without feeling confined or uncomfortable, and set it up in your home so they can gradually get used to the new space.
Once they feel comfortable enough to stay in there without feeling too agitated, plan a day trip to a park or something the dog would like that they would not ordinarily do near home. This will get them used to travelling, used to new people and unexplored places.
From there, it is time to look into a pet-friendly holiday that lasts more than a day. Travel there and stay the night. This will help them get used to a lot of new situations that could potentially make them uncomfortable, but safe in the knowledge that if it does get too much, they can go back if they need to.
After this, the key to a great holiday is planning and research. Know the rules for bringing a dog to the place you plan to stay, research pet-friendly areas, dog walking routes and places for them to see, and discuss with your vet any medications they may need for the journey and holiday