I have had my Vizsla, Floyd for 6 years now and I will admit there are not many places I will go without him. He started camping with me at 12 weeks of age and has been every summer since. He LOVES to travel,or just be with me, not sure which one. LOL
He knows that we are going somewhere as soon as I start packing a bag and then he does not leave me alone. Following me everywhere and watching my every move. I guess he remembers the few times I have left him!!
He is comical in the car. He likes to sit in the front seat (not very safe, I know) and look out the front window (as seen in the picture). My dog walker calls him “Captain Floyd”. Once he is finished watching the world go by he will typically curl up and sleep, still remaining in the front seat.
Before Floyd and I would leave on trips, whether just to my parents for the weekend or camping for a week, I would make sure I had enough food for a few days more than I planned on staying (you never know what might happen), a water dish, a few of his favorite toys (so he doesn’t get too homesick) and a first aid kit for him. I also always made sure that I knew where the closest veterinary and/or emergency hospital was to where I’d be staying.
Approximately 2 years ago, I purchased a large crate for him to be in when we went for long trips! He was not too pleased the first time we traveled to Ottawa this way. He wondered, first of all, why he was in the back seat and not up front and then, why he was in a box that confined him to a tight space. I tried to tell him that it was a lot safer for him to be in a crate while traveling, due to the fact that if we get into an accident, that he would be contained and somewhat safe. Not sure that he understood me!! 😉
He is now more comfortable in the crate and I feel so much better and safer all around that he is in it. I am not interrupted by him stretching and or resting his head on the gear shift etc……. It is safer for everyone involved!!
Being able to travel with your pet can be a pleasurable thing, as long as you take the right precautions prior to traveling. If you know that traveling with your pet is something you will want to do, then you will need to get them used to the car and traveling as early as possible.
Here are a few tips to help them get used to cars:
Start with the car parked in the driveway. Give them lots of praise and treats. Once they are comfortable with just being in the car, you can start working on them being in a seat belt or a crate, (the safest ways to travel) again, with lots of praise. From here, you can proceed to short drives around the block, extending them as your pet becomes more comfortable.
Always be sure to take them out to relieve themselves prior to any travel. No matter how short of a drive.
And of course, during those hot months, never, ever leave your dog/cat alone in the car even with the windows open.
Happy traveling!! 🙂