A pets health is a priority for most owners. Here at we understand the concerns, and continually work to bring informative and fresh information on health risks and problems for the loved ones in the pet owners life.

Is your dog getting up more slowly? Does your dog have trouble climbing stairs? Is your dog stiff or sore?

Vacationing Pets Have Specific Needs When Traveling
PETCO offers how-to tips to make your trip more pleasant for you and your pet

San Diego, CA, June 2, 2003 - As Spring turns to Summer, families across the country gear up for their annual vacations. Since pets are members of the family, more and more people are taking their furry friends with them when they travel. In an effort to ensure the family pet is happy and healthy during this journey, PETCO Animal Supplies, Inc. offers these helpful tips.
What you need to do before you go, the method of travel and where you are heading are all issues to think about as you plan your vacation.

Before you go: Make sure your pet's shots are up-to-date, and do not administer any medication or treatments without first discussing them with your veterinarian. Obtain documentation from your vet to show that your pet's vaccinations are current, and that your companion is healthy. If you are traveling to another country, check with that nation's embassy to determine what precautions will need to be met in order to safely take your pet with you. Many countries require long quarantine periods for pets coming across their borders, so you will want to know these specifics so you can determine whether or not you really want to take your pet with you.
If you are going to leave your pet behind, the ideal setting is your own home, in a familiar environment. If you can find someone trustworthy and reliable to take care of your pet while you are gone, the pet will experience less stress as a result of you being away. If not, find a reputable kennel; inspect the premises, and tell them any special requirements they need to provide to make your pet comfortable for the duration of your trip.

The first thing to consider is the mode of transportation: Will you be driving or flying? Taking the train or the bus? Before answering that question, travelers need to find out what kind of restrictions those carriers place on animal travel. Some companies do not allow pets on board at all, while others require specific documentation and/or charge an additional fee. The more information you have before booking your travel arrangements, the fewer surprises you will have as you set out to enjoy your time away from the daily grind.

Car Travel: If you are traveling by automobile, think about the animal's safety as well as your own. A dog or cat roaming around the car while you drive can be distracting and dangerous. There are a number of different carriers - in a variety of sizes - which you can find to help keep your pet safe and secure for the journey. If using a carrier, it is always beneficial to introduce your pet to the housing several days before the trip, to help them become comfortable with it. Put a favorite toy or blanket inside the carrier with the door open, so your pet can get used to going in and out, and won't feel so isolated when they are shut inside. If you have a large breed dog, and don't have the space in the back seat for a large carrier, there are seat belt-type harnesses that are available which will achieve the same purpose without taking up a lot of extra space. In addition, if you have an SUV or other vehicle with space in the back, you can create a roomy environment for your pet with a gate that will allow them some freedom while at the same time keeping them away from the driver. Another safety consideration is heat; do not leave an animal unattended in a vehicle. Temperatures can top 100 degrees within a matter of minutes - even with a window slightly open - and can pose significant health risks to your pet.

Air Travel: Traveling by plane will pose a new set of considerations, and the size of your pet will be a factor in where the animal is housed for the duration of the flight. For smaller animals, the ideal location is in a small carrier placed under the seat in front of you, like any piece of carry-on luggage. Some airlines will allow this, but may charge an additional fee. Larger animals will have to go below the main passenger cabin. In either case, get a direct flight, and if your pet is not seated with you let the captain or a flight attendant know; he or she may take special precautions if they are aware an animal is on board.

Consider where you are going, and what you will need once you arrive: Your home is likely equipped with a number of conveniences and amenities for your companion animal, so you will need to consider how you can make their temporary environment equally as comfortable. A familiar food dish, toys or bedding will help them feel at home wherever they go. Keeping them on the same diet is also important; traveling is not the time to change which foods they eat. But, depending on your destination, there will be other considerations to be made.

Staying in a hotel: As travel with pets becomes more and more common, a number of hotels - including national chains such as Loews Hotels, Motel 6, and Red Roof Inn - allow pets in their rooms. Even in chains, though, some individual hotels are more cooperative than others when it comes to pets; so it is always best to call ahead to confirm that it won't be a problem. If you aren't exactly sure where you will be staying on any given night as you travel, try to find the basic policies of a number of chains, so you will at least have some options of where to stop while on the road. Some hotels will require a security deposit for your pet, and may deduct from that if the room smells like your pet…so it doesn't hurt to carry a small can of room deodorizer. And then there is Loews, which will not only welcome your pet, but will provide a gift bag and treats to let your furry friend know they are truly welcome.

Staying in a house: If you are going to someone's home, there are a few things to consider. First of all, let the occupants know you are bringing your pet, to make sure there are not issues with allergies or other problems that could cause problems for you, your companion and your hosts. Along with the basic food and supplies listed above, you will also want to get a temporary nametag that lists the phone number where you are staying, in case your pet gets lost while you are there. Grooming and pest control are also important considerations, especially as the weather heats up and flea and tick season kicks in. Keeping your pet brushed will not only help you inspect them for signs of fleas and ticks, but will also reduce excess hair which retains heat. A variety of flea collars and topical treatments are available.

Following this simple advice will ensure that both you and your pet have a healthy, happy and safe vacation. You can find travel-related products in any PETCO store, or in the Travel Center.

PETCO is a leading specialty retailer of premium pet food, supplies and services, with a commitment to quality animal care and education. PETCO's strategy is to offer its customers a complete assortment of pet-related products and services at competitive prices, with superior levels of customer service at convenient locations, by hiring pet lovers and training them to become counselors to our pet-loving customers. PETCO generated net sales of $1.48 billion in the fiscal year ended February 1, 2003. It operates more than 620 neighborhood stores in 43 states and the District of Columbia, as well as a leading destination for on-line pet food and supplies at The PETCO Foundation, PETCO's non-profit organization, has raised more than $12 million since inception in 1999. More than 1,500 non-profit grassroots animal welfare organizations from around the nation have received support from the Foundation.

< home
· get a
· about-
· contact us
· news features


· pet meds
· pet health
· pet insurance
· pet training
· pet supply
· pet lover gifts
· find a vet
· favorites


· vet associations
· vet resources
· vet supplies
· veterinary jobs


· vet universities
· student resources
· veterinary jobs


· equine
· bovine
· ruminant
· swine
· livestock supply
· farm vets


Some of the info and links within relate to the topic of pet/animal health. The contents of are for informational purposes only. Information found on is in no way intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. does not offer veterinary advice. Any inquiries directed to seeking veterinary advice will not be answered. CLICK HERE for a short listing of sites for veterinarian online diagnosis which in no way are affiliated with