It’s summertime and the living is easy. Traditionally, this is the time of year for vacations, beach getaways and just plain being away from the office.
You love to travel, but you can’t stand the thought of leaving your puppy companion home alone. But do you really think your little buddy will be able to handle a long flight?
Here are five ways to help your dog prepare for a long flight to ensure it remains cool, calm and collected during your plane ride.
Make Sure the Airline Accepts Dogs
First things first, you’ll want to examine the airline’s policy regarding dogs. While some airlines will consider a small dog kennel your carry-on item, others will require you to check your pet and crate as cargo luggage. Service dogs, of course, can be brought on to the plane, as long as you have the proper paperwork.
On average the cost of bringing your dog on a plane runs between $100 and $200, depending upon the airline and size of the dog.
Comfort Is Key
If you want your fluffy friend to last the whole plane ride without whimpering, you’ll need to make sure she is comfy and secure. Start by swapping her prong collar for a nylon martingale dog collar. It’s tight enough to correct her while on the leash , but loose enough avoid snagging her coat. It’s also a good idea to include soft bedding in the kennel so she can relax during the flight.
Pro tip: Try adding the comforting smells of home to the crate to help your puppersstay calm. An old, unwashed T-shirt will do the trick nicely!
Training to Reduce Stress
Traveling is stressful enough for humans, but it can be even worse for dogs unaccustomed to public places and loud noises. Remember to crate train your dog early and often so they learn to associate the kennel with good memories, rather than anxiety,punishment or trips to the vet..
Similarly, you may want to practice walking your dog around public spaces weeks ahead of your flight so they can become acclimated to navigating bustling, highly populated areas.
Overcoming Separation Anxiety
While many dogs are completely comfortable all by themselves, others are extremely anxious, even when they can see you from their kennels. If you have a nervous puppy, you may want to ask your veterinarian about medication.
The proper sedative could help your pet sleep through the flight, thereby making the whole trip easier for them, your fellow passengers and you.
Last but not least, get them suitably prepared for the day of the flight. Start by making sure your dog is fed and well hydrated. Do not put any food or water in the kennel, as bowls could very easily spill during travel. Some flyers find pets actually do better with an empty tummy. After all, the combination of turbulence and stress could make for some embarrassing accidents.
Remember to give your doggy a bathroom break before taking them on the plane. Nobody likes an uncomfortable bladder. If you have time, try taking Fido for a walk or a run. This will wear him out so he isn’t so anxious on the plane. For more tips, tricks and quality dog accessories visit Hot Dog Collars.