Pet Travel Checklist
Pet travel is as easy as you want to make it. Just as you would when you travel by your self, family or friends, it takes a little planning on where to go, what to bring and what to do once you get there. A checklist helps a lot, especially if you are new to pet travel.
Pet Travel Planning – Stage I
Decide where you want to go. If you are undecided, you may want to browse through our city pages. From our homepage, type in any city in the “Find Pet Friendly Activities in Any U.S. City” to see where there is to do, places to eat and where to play. From this page, you will discover everything that is pet friendly about that particular city.
Once you have decided where you want to travel, reserve your room at any pet friendly hotel listed on the Pet Hotels of America website for low pre-negotiated rates. Look for the deals…extra night stays, free Starbucks cards, doggie gift baskets etc. Pet Hotels of America has more than 25,000 pet friendly hotels at more than 1,300 hotel chains in the U.S. to choose from. Hotel brands include Hyatt, Hilton, Best Western, Trump, Embassy Suites, Holiday Inn and La Quinta Inn to name a few. At most pet friendly hotels, you can expect to get the stables such as pet bed and water bowl. Others, like the Hyatt Regency Scottsdale, really go all out for dogs and cats like. Watch this!
IMPORTANT! Print out your reservation confirmation and put it in your suitcase right away. You will definitely need it….even more so than when traveling with humans only.
Pet Travel Planning – Stage II
Go online and see if there are any precautions you must take for your pet. For example, if you are going hiking in a place that is known for having tics, you may want to get a different kind of flee and tic protector. We recommend using Traveling Pets Supplies to pick up your products, as it as everything in this category and often on sale.
Visit your veterinarian if you have done so in a while. If your pet is skittish, you may want to pick up a sedative. Your veterinarian can offer you something safe, yet effective. Make sure your pet is up to date on vacinations and get copies of those records. If you haven’t done so already, getting your pet chipped is a good idea as well.
Go to our Pet Friendly Airlines Page and look at the Pet Policies of the airlines you are taking. Each has various requirements in the size of carriers, how many pets are allowed per flight, if there is a weight limitation, and even quarantines, such as when you travel to Hawaii.
If your pet is not used to car travel or being in a carrier, start getting him familiar with it. You may want to read our blogs about taking a cat on a road trip and tips on traveling with cats.
Pet Travel Packing – Stage III
You will definitely want to bring your pet’s vacination records.
Pack several photos of your pet should you get separated.
Depending on the climate of where you are traveling and how you are getting there, you may want to bring a special heated or cooling bed. Most hotels that are listed on Pet Hotels of America offer clean, just-like-new beds for your pet. Most take pride in being pet friendly and do their part to make sure your animal is just as comfortable as you are. However, if you are traveling by car, you will have the luxury to bring a specialtiy bed whether one that heats or cools.
Pack a portable water and food bowl. There are 3-in-1 units on the market. You should keep these in your rental car if this is how you will be traveling.
Make sure you have plenty and treats of food until you get to your travel destiantion. If traveling by plane, throw some in your backpack or purse. However, you will not want to feed or water your pet too soon to when your plane leaves. Make sure to take him for a walk before takeoff. Remember, if traveling in the cabin, your pet will be in carrier.
Portable strollers are a great back up for pets that tire easily and come in especially handy when sightseeing. Plus, they take the load off your shoulders from your purse or any items you purchase while out and about. However, make sure not to leave valuables unattended.
If your pet is small, bring an over-the-shoulder sling, This too is good for when you want to go sightseeing. Make sure to always carrie a leash and waste bags, however.
Include a toy and a blanket in your pet’s carrier. This will take away some of the nervousness your pet may feel. Bring a few toys to play with when at your destination as well.
Pet Travel Itinerary – Stage IV
Pet Hotels of America has listings for pet friendly restaurants, on- and off-leash beaches and parks, hiking trails, activities and more for each U.S. city. You can also find this information while on the road on your smartphone. No matter what device you use, simply type in your travel destination into our Activities search box and all the categories will appear. Then click on whatever one you want.
Here is a sample of the listing categories you will find for each city.
Kennels & Doggie daycares
Off-leash dog parks
R.V. parks & campgrounds
Off-leash dog beaches
Pet friendly beaches
Pet friendly patio dining & bars
Vineyards & wineries
Theme parks, monuments & museums
Pet friendly shopping
Expos & dog shows
Veterinarians & pet hospitals
Shelters & rescues
Pet & service dog organizations
Pet Travel Considerations – Stage V
There will most likely be times when you will want to leave your pet at a doggie daycare or dog hotel. There are many listed on the Pet Hotels of America website. Find one in the city where you are traveling to via the Find Activities in any U.S. City search or the find out what to look for in a kennel, dog hotel or doggie daycare.
We hope you now feel comfortable embarking upon pet travel. Please feel free to contact us if you have questions. We are experts in pet travel and will go out of our way to help you as much as possible.
Have a great trip!