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Gone to look for America . . .

Summer is soon upon us, and all across America, we are getting out the camping gear, fueling up the Winebago, and making reservations.

But, what to do with Fluffy and Fido? Can they come, too?

It is preferable, for your sake and theirs, to leave cats home. No cat likes to travel, and the stress of the trip in a carrier, coupled with time in a strange location, can cause many cats unnecessary anxiety, digestive issues, and behavior issues, too (like urinating). Find a reputable petsitter and leave Fluffy in her palace!

As for Fido, many service organizations these days are more than willing to accommodate a dog. It is always wise to call ahead to campgrounds and hotels. Many require a pet deposit, usually refundable, just to ensure your little furry darling does no damage.

Airlines are no exception to the ‘pet-friendly’ rule.  A good place to start for information on flying with one is the airline’s website. Most will accommodate, but depending on the animal’s breed and size, may require special handling and placement in the cargo area. Water dish requirements, proper labeling of the pet crate, and a sampling of Fido’s favorite dinner are a must in case your pet is lost like luggage! Call ahead if the website is not clear on requirements. Proper adherence to the rules is a must or the airline has the right to refuse! 

Some really great things to keep in mind before any trip with a dog (especially) are to ensure his/her vaccines are up-to-date and a microchip is in place with your current contact information.  Many vets and animal specialists also suggest taking the dog’s vaccination history records, too. This little tip could really help in an emergency.

Pet-friendly spas and resorts are popping up all over, and they don’t limit their clientele to just cats and dogs! Many cater to exotic birds, smaller fur-babies, and even reptiles! For a great list of really great places to take your pets to be pampered (because they can never be pampered enough!), or to just pass a night or two, check out http://www.petswelcome.com , a fantastic resource for the jet set!

The last little piece of advice we can offer is to be honest with yourself and your dog: is your dog travel-friendly? Or does the stress of an extended car ride make for a grumpy pup? If you feel the stress would be too great, it is preferable to find a petsitter or reputable kennel and just leave home without it! 

Either way, happy summer! Happy travels! Safe journey to all!

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