Long car rides and road trips with your furry friend require pre-planning, but they can be fun and cheaper than boarding your pet while you’re away. Whether you’re traveling with a dog or cat, your travel buddy should wear a collar with tags that display your pet’s name, your name, your cell phone number and proof of rabies shots. It’s also smart to get your pet microchipped (if your pet already has a microchip, be sure to call the company and update the information).
Just like you pack for yourself, you must also pack for your pet. Bring a supply of your pet’s food, bottles of water, spill-proof water bowl, medications and some favorite toys. For dogs, choose toys that will keep them occupied, such as bones or hollow toys that can be filled with treats. For cats, choose toys filled with catnip, along with a portable litter box (which can be found at most pet stores).
You may need to plan a week or two in advance if you pet suffers from car-related anxiety. If you have an anxious dog, you should adjust your dog to being in the car before leaving. Bring your dog into the car and sit in the driveway. Once that’s tolerable, slowly build up to short rides that end someplace fun, like a park. Feeding your dog a meal in the car can help associate the car with good things, as well. If you have an anxious cat, pick up some products from the pet store that promote feelings of calm and comfort, such as pheromone-infused products and catnip-filled toys.
You may enjoy letting your pet ride on your lap, but it’s a very dangerous habit. The safest place for your pet is in a crate that’s strapped down in the backseat. Being secured prevents your pet from distracting you while behind the wheel; not to mention, a pet with free range of the car can become seriously injured or die in the event of an accident. Use a crate that’s well-ventilated and large enough for your pet to comfortably stand, turn and lie down. If your pet has a squeamish bladder, line the crate with absorbent padding, such as a wee pad, underneath your pet’s cushion.
Whether nervous or excited, you pet will need constant access to water while in the car. You may prefer to make frequent stops for potty breaks and rehydration, but if you’d rather keep moving, freeze a bowl of water that your pet can lick to stay cool and hydrated. Never leave a pet unattended in a car; it’s not safe in any weather conditions.
Review your coverage before a big road trip. Call Silver Coast Insurance at 909-877-2200 for more information on Rancho Cucamonga auto insurance.