Spring vacation is no longer just for two-legged rovers. There’s pet hotel nowadays that has a room service menus for dog, massages for over-stressed pets, comfortable beds; many pet friendly hotels have been stepping up their pet services.
Pet safety has also become a more persuasive issue with cases of animals being lost, injured or on its last legs have lately increased. There are 39 animals died while flying aboard commercial jets in the United States in 2010, compared with 22 in 2009, as stated by the Department of Transportation. There are 13 injured pets and 5 were lost. Delta Airlines was responsible for an important share of the upturn, with 16 deaths and 6 injuries.
While those numbers are a small percentage of the hundreds of thousands of animals flown by the airlines each year, they expose the risks that pets may face while traveling. So, if you are allowing for your pet on a plane, here are a few pet air travel tips:
Airlines limit the number of pets in the cabin, so don’t wait until the last minute to book.
Prepare your pet for travel
Cesar Millan of National Geographic Channel’s “Dog Whisperer” suggests taking the time to adapt your pet to the pet carrier by placing it on the floor of the car so they can feel the vibration as it will on a plane. He also recommends using lavender oil as an “association scent” to help the pet relax on the plane. At feeding times and before walks, place a drop of the oil on your hands and let your dog pick up the scent.
Also, take your dog for a walk or play to help drain his energy before the flight. So, the more tired he is, the possible he will be to sleep during the flight.
Make sure your dog is secure in your vehicle either behind the back seats with a dog guard in an estate car or secure on the back seat with dog car seats. Make the ride as smooth as possible. Avoid lurching forward, brake smoothly, and imagine that you are delivering crystal glassware that will shatter if you do not look ahead and steer clear of bumps and potholes in the road.
If this is your pet’s first trip, take a few short practice trips to see how things go before tackling a long ride. Allowing dogs a window view and fresh air can help them adjust to the car’s atmospheres. Keep meals small before the trip and limit foods a few hours before hitting the road.
For pets prone to carsickness, there are medications your vet can recommend to make things more comfortable. Don’t forget to protect the car’s interior with waterproof seat covers and pack a bucket of cleaning materials.