How to Decide Whether to Board Your Pet or Take It With You on Your Holiday Trip

Many people think that their furry four-legged friends are part of their family, so it can be difficult to leave them on vacation. But given that vacation travel is hectic enough in and of itself, it’s not always clear if adding your little dog to this mix is ​​worth it.

Flying with pets is one thing and can be easily ruled out for a variety of reasons. But what about a trip? Hypothetically, this seems to be easier: load the dog and / or cat in the car and hit the road.

In reality, however, there is still something to consider. In an article for the University website, Devin Rokita of Washington State University College of Veterinary Medicine explains what to keep in mind when deciding whether to take your pet with you on your vacation trip or arrange accommodation instead. Here’s what you need to know.

Pickup or Boarding: Things to Consider

There are a few things to keep in mind when considering the pros and cons of taking your pet with you on your vacation trip:

  • Your pet’s temperament
  • Your pet’s special needs
  • Does anyone who travels in your car or lives in the same house have an allergy to your pet
  • Is there a place in the car to safely place your pet
  • How well can your pet adapt to the new environment and schedule / daily routine?
  • Is your pet sick in the car

When to ride a pet

As much as you want to take your pet with you on your vacation trip, sometimes it just isn’t possible, ”says Dr. Jessica Bell, a community practice veterinarian at the Washington State University Teaching Veterinary Clinic.

“If your pet does not like to travel or is easy to experiencing stress, you should think about boarding or looking after pets,” – said Bell Rokyta . “You also have to consider the destination. If this is not an animal-friendly environment, or you live with someone who has no room for your animal, then it is best to sit on it. “

Another thing to keep in mind this year is that there is still a shortage of veterinarians and pet care workers , so your regular accommodations may be closed or run with limited bandwidth. Plus, during the holidays, the demand for planting is always on the rise , so you’ll run into this too.

Tips for taking your pet with you on your vacation trip

If, all things considered, taking your pet with you on a holiday outing is the best option (or at least feasible), here are some tips courtesy of Bell :

  • Make sure your pet is vaccinated, microchipped, and wears a collar with an ID tag.
  • If your pet is not used to driving, do some quick test runs around the area to get them used to this way of getting around. Or, if it turns out that your pet absolutely cannot cope with the trip in the car, it is better to find out now, and not after you have collected the car and hit the road.
  • If your pet is sick, do not feed him a full meal before leaving.
  • Give your pet plenty of water and remember that they need potty breaks too.
  • Make sure your pet is securely and safely secured in the car, be it a crate or a dog harness.
  • Once again, make sure that the hotel or rental house you booked is pet-friendly. If you are staying with relatives or friends in their home, talk about your pet’s needs and their policies / expectations.
  • Be sure to pack your pet – including items that it may not need at home, but may need on the road. (For example, if you have a fenced-in yard and your cousin doesn’t, take a long leash with you.)
  • Also collect food, bowls of food and water, trash bags or litter box, favorite toys, and any special bedding they need to sleep.

Finally, Bell advises sticking to your pet’s regular schedule as much as possible. “Try to stick to your pet’s normal daily routine as much as possible — the same foods, the same blankets, the same walking schedule,” she said. “It will definitely reduce their body’s stress response and make the trip more enjoyable for them.”


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