Monday, June 17, 2013

Is Your Pet Safe When Traveling With You ?

If your like most ... once you bring an  animal into your life, they quickly become members of the family.

Studies show that 74 percent of pet owners think of them as a child or family member. With such a high percentage, it should come as no surprise that many of these families want to take their pet with them whenever they travel.

Some pets love cars – others would much rather stay put for the rest of their lives.
There are many options to fit every animal's needs. Here are some pet travel tips .

Train them young. Cats generally don't like cars, but puppies can be trained fairly easily to become good travellers. Play with the puppy inside the car when it is stationary. Then switch the engine on. When it is used to this, start taking the dog for short rides.

Crate them. For larger dogs, it is a good idea to crate them, especially for long journeys. This will also protect a dog in case of an accident. Many animals will feel safer inside their crate, and therefore will put up less of a performance.

Pet carriers. If an animal does not like travelling, then it is very dangerous to transport them in a car, unless they are in a proper pet carrier of some sort. A clawing cat, or a yelping puppy can easily distract the driver and cause an accident. Don't use a cardboard box – it is too easy to escape from these.

When travelling with big dogs, it is a good idea to have part of the car partitioned, so that the driver cannot be distracted.

Don't leave animals inside a locked car in the sun. Remember, even if you park in the shade, the sun moves as the day goes on. If you have to leave an animal in the car, make sure it is inside a parking garage and that the windows are left open a few centimetres.

Remember ...a wide open window is an invitation to disaster. Some pets can be relied on not to jump through the window, but why take the chance? Most dogs like a bit of a breeze when they are inside a car, but ten centimeters will do it.

When driving a long way, remember that your dog needs to get out every now and then to answer the call of nature. Also make sure that you give your dog water whenever you stop. When travelling long distances with an animal that is not used to the car, save your sanity – and probably that of the animal – by going to the vet and getting a sedative before the journey. Remember also that you can get anti-nausea treatment if your animal gets car sick on long journeys.

Seatbelts are not that restrictive, as dogs will still be able to sit up, look out of the window or lie down, whichever they choose. But, they will go a long way to protecting the dog.

Bring familiar items from home with them in the vehicle including favorite toys and a towel or bedding still retaining the sent of home.

We don’t question the importance of traveling safely and we should always provide the same protection for our pets.

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