5 Tips for Travelling with a Dog

Some dogs are born travelers who will happily hike for miles and live for hanging their heads out of car windows. But others are homebodies, for whom traveling can lead to nerves, nausea, boredom, and pent-up energy.

If you’re the owner of a dog who dislikes travel, here are 5 tips to help ease the process of getting them from A to B:

Supplements
Unlike prescription medications, which can be strong and may come with unwanted side effects, natural supplements are a safe, more subtle way to introduce an added layer of calm into travel days.

Many owners find that using supplement products like CBD oil can help dogs deal with discomforts such as anxiety, stress, and nausea – all things that can occur when hitting the road.

Pet CBD is one of the fastest-growing areas in the pet industry, thanks to the products’ anti-inflammatory effect. By binding to receptors that play a role in triggering pain and anxiety responses, CBD helps relax dogs, making them less affected by stress triggers.

Food, water, and bowl
Number one on any dog’s priority list is their food, so it makes sense for owners to also prioritize their pet’s dinners. Keeping a regular supply of your dog’s normal food helps keep things simple, and prevents the stress of trying to find suitable meals wherever you stop.

Owners should always carry a full water bottle for their dogs. But it’s also important to bring a reliable bowl along, too. Often, dogs can struggle to drink and eat from bowls they’re not accustomed to, especially if they’re too steep or shallow to comfortably access what’s inside. For bigger dogs, elevated travel bowls are available from specialist pet suppliers

Other doggo travel essentials include treats, poop bags, their leash, and any medications they might use.

Creating the right environment
A crate is a tried-and-tested solution for keeping dogs calm and contained – two things that are especially important when travelling.

Depending on your mode of transport, you’ll want your crate to look a little different. But no matter the design, crates should be big enough for dogs to stand, turn around, and comfortably lie down. Adequate ventilation is also key.

For smaller dogs and shorter time periods, more potable carriers are great options. Doggy backpacks can work well when hiking or walking long distances.

Once you arrive at your destination, there’s still work to do to create the right environment for a dog. Ideally, owners should confirm beforehand whether a destination is dog friendly, but regardless, it’s always a good idea to make your own judgment on whether a space is safe for your pet.

Many hotel chains will charge extra fees for staying with dogs in tow. Make yourself aware of these and consider looking for hotels that pets without additional fees, no deposits, and no one-time charges.

Home comforts
Bringing along a few key items from your home can help dogs feel more comfortable when travelling. A familiar toy, for example, eases the transition from a well-known environment into an unknown space.

Inside their crate or travel space, also make sure to add a comfortable blanket that can provide warmth if necessary. Using a blanket from home introduces familiar smells, which should have a calming effect for most dogs.

Favorite treats can be a lifesaver, providing distractions and incentives to help guide dogs through the traveling experience.

Some owners even bring along different ‘levels’ of treats, with more everyday snacks acting as a standard reward, while saving a special variety for times when a stronger incentive is needed.

ID
Alongside those items needed to make your dog as comfortable as possible, it’s important to also think about the things necessary for ensuring your trip itself is a seamless experience.

When traveling with a dog – especially when traveling across borders – a variety of different types of paperwork may be required. From pet passports to insurance to health records, every country has its own specific requirements for pet entry, so make sure you do your research.

ID is also important for making sure that your pet can be identified in the event that they get lost. Owners should remember that dogs may be both unfamiliar with their surroundings and curious about new sights and smells when traveling, which increases the risk of them becoming disorientated or wandering off.

If you are separated from your dog when traveling, knowing that they can be quickly and easily identified should help provide at least a little peace of mind.

Always make sure your dog id where a collar that contains an ID tag with your name and international phone number. ID microchipping is also worth considering, as these can often be read by practices in other countries.

If you have a lot of paperwork to handle, try making digital copies of each document and storing them on your phone. That way, everything remains easily accessible why the hard copies can stay safely together in one place.

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How to keep your dog comfortable while travelling in winter

Even though our furry friends are just that – furry – even the poofiest pooches can get a bit chilly in the UK’s icy winter temperatures. Yes, dogs were originally wild animals (and some still are), but a few thousand years of domestication has led to a love of pampering. And who can blame them?!

With that in mind, here are a few ways to help your dog keep comfy while travelling in winter.

  • Find dog-friendly accommodation

This might seem like an obvious point, but when you’re planning your holiday with your canine friend(s), it’s definitely the most important!

The words ‘dog-friendly accommodation’ are like music to a dog owner’s ears, as the vast majority of accommodation is human-only. Finding the perfect hotel, self-catering cottage or bed and breakfast can often feel like stumbling upon gold dust. It’s not often that you find all your preferred amenities and luxuries in a property, with the addition of it being dog-friendly.

When it comes to finding the right accommodation for you and your dog in winter, comfort is key. Is there a safe, warm place for your dog to sleep? Is there a roaring fire to up the cosy factor? Is there an enclosed garden, so that you don’t have to walk around in the cold with your dog while they do their business? All of these elements make a holiday much easier and more enjoyable for you and your pup, so make sure you’re armed with your tick list before you browse!

Woodfarm Barns has all of these features, and more. We don’t just tolerate dogs – we encourage them! And that’s why our beautiful, luxury, dog-friendly holiday cottages are a perfect choice for holidays all throughout the year, and also why we’ve built our reputation in this market.

  • Take blankets in your suitcase

If your dog loves to snuggle, ensure you bring a couple of their favourite blankets with you in your suitcase.

Often, we care about our own comforts and forget that our pets enjoy theirs too. Bringing a couple of blankets along on your trip will not only keep your dog warm, but will provide them with a familiar scent of home. This is often very handy when a dog is in an unknown place, as it is likely to help them settle into their surroundings.

  • Wipe paws after playing in snow

Although we are usually blessed (or cursed, depending on how you look at it) with only a couple of days’ worth of snow per year in the UK, it often settles quickly during those cold January and February months, creating a super fun situation for our dogs.

It’s a real pleasure to watch your pet playing in the snow, however, it’s very important that their fur and paws are cleared of snow once they’re finished. Firstly, snow can become contaminated with chemical-containing products such as anti-freeze and de-icer. If your dog licks their paws after paying in snow, they could ingest those same products and become ill. Also, snow can dry out your dog’s paw pads and cause them to crack, making it painful for your dog to walk.

When they come back inside from playing in the snow, simply wipe down your dog’s fur and paws with a towel to clear away the snow or ice.

  • Avoid leaving your dog in the car

Of course we all know that dogs should not be left in hot cars, but did you know that cold cars can be deadly too?

Car interiors lose heat very quickly in cold weather, meaning that anything left inside will become cold, including your dog. It’s most likely that they’ll just be uncomfortable, however in particularly cold climates or if your dog is exposed to low temperatures for a long time, they could develop hypothermia.

If you’re going to be travelling with your dog in the car, try planning ahead to make sure the places you’re visiting allow dogs. That way, your dog will be safe and happy knowing that they are with you, and you can rest assured that they are comfortable. For Suffolk-based holidays, the Woodfarm Barns-owned website whered www.wheredowe.co.uk owe.co.uk has lots of info on dog-friendly restaurants, shopping facilities and, of course, walks.

We at Woodfarm Barns and Barges hope you have a waggly tail of a time, wherever you plan to go on your winter holiday. We hope our top tips for dog-friendly winter travel come in handy, and help you and you dog keep safe and comfortable, and have lots of fun!

Enter a pic of your ‘Pooch Passenger’ and win

Pooch passenger

If your dog loves a road trip, gets excited every time they see you’re heading for the driveway and simply can’t wait to hop on in to the car, then you’re definitely going to want to give the brand new competition from The Car Buying Service a go.

 
Enter a picture of your eager ‘Pooch Passenger’ and you could win a £50 Pets at Home voucher so you can spoil your furry travel companion with a treat or two.

 
Take part in the competition and you’ll not only be in with a chance of winning this top prize, but you’ll also be doing your bit for charity too, because The Car Buying Service will donate £1 to Manchester Dogs’ Home for every pic they receive.
Entering’s easy: just take a quick snap of your dog in the car – the more creative the better (nothing dangerous, though, of course) – then share the picture publicly on Twitter or Instagram using the hashtag #poochpassenger.

 
Want some inspiration when it comes to creating your pic? Then take a look at the special #poochpassenger page where you can see all the entries that have been submitted so far; once you’ve sent in your image, it’ll be displayed there too.

 
To find out more and read the full terms and conditions, head on over to www.thecarbuyingservice.co.uk/pooch-passenger/