Vacations are a time for fun and relaxation—and who’s a better vacation buddy than your faithful doggy? If you’ve recently gotten a dog and are considering bringing them along for your next trip, it could be an exciting opportunity to strengthen your bond.
However, as fun as new places can be, there are important considerations to make before you put your dog in the car or airplane and travel to your destination. Take time to really ask yourself the question, “Should you bring your dog along on vacation?” and be realistic with your situation.
Where Are You Going?
Before you consider bringing your dog on the long trip ahead of you, consider the destination. Where you’re vacationing, along with any stops along the way, must be completely pet-friendly. If they aren’t, your choice of hotels will be severely limited. If you’re not staying at a hotel, and are camping or RVing instead, then you don’t need to worry about pet-friendly destinations!
However, if you think pet-accommodating lodgings are too expensive or out of the question, you may not want to bring your dog along.
Is Your Dog Trained?
When you can trust your dog to respond to commands and not get into trouble, the trip becomes far easier. An untrained dog may bolt into unknown territory or misbehave in the hotel—which could end your vacation short. Don’t consider bringing your dog with you to a distant vacation if they don’t behave around strangers, behave when leashed, or obey your commands. Consider bringing them along on the next vacation only after you bring them to a trainer.
Additionally, make sure your dog has their tags up to date or has a microchip. If something does go wrong because of a lapse in behavior, you’ll be able to track them down sooner to keep them safe.
Can Your Dog Handle Traveling?
Whether you’re traveling by car or plane, it’s imperative that you know they’ll be okay along the way. Before you plan a long trip with your canine companion, be sure to learn how to travel with dogs. For long journeys, keep them in their kennel the entire time. The kennel prevents them from getting underfoot and distracting you; it will keep them in one place in case of an accident.
A dog that gets sick too often or feels too anxious in the car might not work well on a road trip. Work on training your puppy to handle car rides better so that they’re ready for the next trip and leave them with family or a dog boarding service for this vacation.
Knowing if you should bring your dog along on vacation is partially reliant on the dog’s behavior and partially reliant on how much you can handle on your trip. If you know you won’t spend any time with them once you reach your destination and you don’t have someone else to keep them company, it might not be the best idea for your dog to come with you this time.