The best moments in life are when you share memories of fun, laughter and travelling with your family, friends and for many of us, our pets. Dogs, in particular, are ‘man's best friend’, and many of us now wish to take our pet on holiday; why leave them at home if you don’t have to?!
If you take your puppy on journeys from a young age, he will become accustomed to travelling as he grows, and no doubt enjoy the adventure with his pack of human friends.
It has become easier to take your dog or cat abroad within the EU (and others), under the Pets Travel Scheme (PETS) which requires the pet to have a pet passport, microchip, rabies vaccination and tapeworm treatment prior to return. Check the government website, however, as this may change when the UK leaves the EU.
Presently though, we are big fans of the ‘staycation’, especially with our 4-legged friends. A UK short break provides us with a sense of adventure balanced against the potential stress encountered by taking a pup on the move.
7 Essential Items You Will Need for Beach and City Breaks
#1 Wellies and Walking Boots
You can still feel fashionable even on the drizzliest of days when travelling with waterproof ankle boots that can be great in both soggy weather and sunny weather. Walking boots will look great even in the worst weather, you need one that is comfortable.
When travelling you don’t want to take many different pairs of shoes with you, just get one pair that will be a general all-rounder.
You can wear them in the city as well as the country. However, if you prefer a pair of brightly patterned wellies, then make sure you choose a sturdy and comfortable pair that have a function equal to fashion!
#2 Waterproof Coats
We all know that in the UK the weather can be unpredictable, it goes without saying. Consider a pack away mac for unexpected summer rain showers, rather than a heavier umbrella that turns itself inside out in a bluster of wind.
Remember your dog coats too, if they wear one in the colder seasons.
#3 Back Pack
It is good to have a small rucksack when travelling for your immediate items and documents which you might need, whether in the UK or flying abroad.
The bag pack can be small just with a few personal items which you need to be within arm’s reach which are subjected to specific size requirements and vary with different airlines.
For safety purposes, it is important to keep your valuables in your backpack not in your checked luggage. Once at your destination, your backpack is handy for day trips and remaining hands-free to be able to manage your pet too.
Carrying your toiletries must be done carefully considering airports have regulations about carrying liquid products to the plane.
They have to adhere to the container measurement required for you to carry them when boarding a plane - if you are carrying them in hand luggage.
Check with the airline before travel if you are flying. You can often get travel size toiletries or small bottles into which you can dispense permitted amounts of your favourite luxuries.
#5 Gadgets - Small Phones and Cameras
These days most of us utilize our smartphones as our phone/camera/sat nav all-in-one.
It really has become essential, not only for our holidays but of everyday life. I think we’d be lost without them, quite literally! Our advice, make sure you have it insured, and that it covers you abroad if you are going.
This is more pertinent for travel abroad, but it’s important to remember to have travel documents such as a passport for both you and your pet if you are leaving the UK.
I tend to keep these super important items alongside my cards and cash, in a waist belt. Of course, many of our bookings can now be made online with e-tickets being enough, but check before you travel.
#7 A Vehicle
If you are exploring a new area, often a car is still the best way to get about. Although we are all becoming more conscious of our environment, the freedom of our own car to get off the beaten track is an essential luxury for our getaway. We have taken our car near and far, and with a dog and crate in the back, it is the easiest way to travel.
7 Essential Items You Will Need for Your Pet
#1 Dog Lead and Harness
You do not need to confine your dog to avoid getting lost during your trip. An extendable dog lead and harness will allow you to let your pooch to roam and explore wide open spaces while you can control his movements.
When packing ensure to put a lead and harness in your backpack so you can keep your dog closer to you when necessary. Our friends at Rangers Dog have reviewed some of the items listed below so feel free to pay them a visit.
#2 Collar with ID Tag
Having a dog tag is an easy way for somebody to identify your dog, should you be separated.
Although all dogs should be microchipped in the UK, microchips can only be read by a person with a scanner (vet/dog warden), whereas if you also have an ID tag then any passer-by can utilize that information to reunite you and pooch.
#3 Dog Tracker
Travelling to unfamiliar areas can make your dog anxious and want to explore. A dog tracker will save you hours of searching and agony if she suddenly gets misplaced or escapes.
With a GPS dog tracker you will be notified when your dog leaves a safe zone in minutes and be able to take immediate action. Another good thing is that many trackers can be used globally.
Use one alongside your ID tag on the collar to maximise the chances of a successful reunion should the unfortunate situation arise.
#4 Travel Pet Crate
Whether you are flying or driving you will need a crate to safely transport your pet which can also be used a bed for your cat or dog. Put a warm and comfortable blanket in the crate in case he needs to sleep along the way.
Getting the right size crate is important as well so make sure you take good advice on how big the dog crate should be.
When using a plane make sure that your pet’s identification papers and veterinary certificates are secured in a plastic bag or vinyl sleeve to the outside of the pet crate and your contacts.
Check your pet in according to your airline’s requirements and keep her comfortable and secure.
#5 Travel Pet Bowl and Bottle
You can be nervous first time when travelling with your pooch but with time it gets easier. It is good to carry a travelling bowl; most of which are collapsible and easy to pack for her food and bottle for her water as drinking water.
Make sure you take enough food for the entire stay, as well as a few treats as it might be hard to get supplies of her favourite foods in another country since you have limited time to explore and want to be enjoying not looking for pet food.
Even in the UK if your dog takes a particular brand, remember rural getaways might only be serviced by smaller shops which may not stock a huge range of pet foods!
#6 Pet Toys
Being in an unfamiliar environment can make her unsettled, and a familiar toy can ease the tension. Her toys with familiar smell can brighten her mood. Carry your dog favourite toys to keep her occupied and at ease away from home.
#7 Dog Towels
Bring a familiar item from home that will make it less challenging for your dog. A soft blanket or towel gives your dog a sense of familiarity and reminds them of home, which can often help them to settle down to a good night’s sleep even in a different place.
Since you will out and about, your is bound to get dirty and muddy, therefore, a towel will come in handy for wiping her clean as you board your vehicle or going into the hotel.
Travelling with our pets has certainly become easier, especially when it comes to going abroad too. There are plenty of pet-friendly places to stay in the UK if you fancy a staycation, and with good planning, you will save stress along the journey. Do your research, and you will have a great time.
A seasoned camper and hiker, there is nothing he doesn’t know about the Great Outdoors. Hiking alone, with friends, or even little ones, he’s done it all. A trained survivalist, he gives Bear Grylls a run for his money.