With all the check-in processes at the airport, the airline mode of transport can be hectic! It can be worse if you have decided to bring your four-legged friend with you for the first time. However, if this is your case, worry not, with the proper planning, you can manage it and enjoy a stress-free vacation together with your pet. Here are some tips to ensure both you and your dog have a great time during your traveling.
1. Know whether your dog can travel
Before you book your ticket, check whether your dog can fly or not. Pregnant dogs, too little puppies, older and sick pets aren’t supposed to travel. Some dogs may have motion sickness condition and so, unfit to move as well. Take your canine for a short trip in your car to determine whether it has this condition or not. You can as well talk to your vet to confirm your pet’s health is well to avoid risking its life.
2. Book in advance
Book your flight in advance and tell the agency that you’ll be in accompany to your pet. Different airlines have different rules concerning this, and therefore you must obtain all the details from the specific airline that you’ve chosen. Note: you may not pay for your dog’s ticket during the booking but be sure to you’ll be charged on the D-day.
3. Crate train your dog earlier
No airline will accept any pet to travel without a carrier. Therefore, whether yours will go in-cabin or as cargo, it’s critical you train it to be in a crate in advance to avoid having a hard time while moving. Don’t also forget to train your pet how to feed in a box. Otherwise, you risk messing everything up while feeding him during your trip. Make sure you have the right flight crate as not all containers are allowed by the airline. Ideally, the box should be big enough for your dog to stand, lie down and stretch in it comfortably.
4. Familiarize your dog with the airport environment
If it is your pet’s first time at the airport, make sure you take it there some days before the trip day to familiarize it with the noise and the crowd. Doing this will make your dog less anxious during the traveling period. Other than taking your pet to the airport, you can play recordings that have airport noise to familiarize your canine with the site. Such audios are available online.
5. Before you leave for the airport
On the day of departure, do not feed your pet in the morning to avoid accidents that may occur due to indigestion. Instead, take it for a walk so that it gets tired and take a nap as you travel. Again, a jog will make it stretch a bit before you enclose it in the crate for long hours.
6. Arrive at the airport early enough
Arrive at the airport two to two and a half hours before the departure time. It will allow you to have enough time to clear both of you on the security line. Also if you arrive earlier, you’ll be able to take your puppy to the bathroom to relieve before you leave. You’ll then be able to get into the airplane among the first. Hence have enough time to settle before the plane takes off.
Always ensure your friend has a tag with its medical papers, identity card as well as your destination. Bigger pets may travel as cargo, away from you and this information will be of great help in case of emergency. Be ready to spend more money on transport if your dog is large and cannot travel in-cabin.
7. Bring your pet’s bag with you
Just like when you’re traveling with a kid, don’t forget to pack food, water, snacks, and toys for your dog. Remember, your pet is trained to feed in the crate, so that is where you’ll feed it from. Add a padded mat in the container and a blanket to make your puppy more comfortable and warm in the airline.
You may want to travel with your pet due to various reasons. Well, as you have read, it’s possible. You only need to be a bit more cautious than while you’re traveling alone.
Ensure your dog behaves well while handled by the strangers as it’s likely going to be with the crew and the security personnel. Otherwise, consider living it behind to avoid chaos in the airport.