So, your usual summer getaway to the sun and sea may not be possible right now, but, that doesn’t mean you can’t have a fantastic break by planning a dog friendly staycation with your four legged fur baby(ies)!
Whilst some restrictions remain on what we can and can’t do and where we can and can’t visit and, yes, we must admit, it may not be the Mediterranean or Caribbean dream we’d imagined, we can however still plan the perfect getaway.
Here are our top tips for planning a dog friendly holiday.
Planning and selecting a location is really important. Many countries, regions and even cities have different advice and recommendations and not only this, but the situation is of course ever changing, so please make sure you check local guidance in your chosen location to make sure it is safe to travel and that you are following their local restrictions.
Next, what do you want to do on your staycation? Research the areas you’re thinking of visiting to make sure there is something for everyone in the family, including the four legged members! Compile a list of dog friendly activities and eateries, there are numerous websites that can help you do this, for example, www.dogfriendlyguru.com, a site that houses info on dog friendly accommodation & services across the UK & Ireland. Also make sure that you note the nearest veterinary practice in case you should need it whilst on your travels!
Priority number 1 will obviously be to make sure that wherever you decide to stay, your dog will be welcomed too. Most booking sites, e.g. www.booking.com or www.airbnb.com allow you to filter by “Pet Friendly” or “Allows pets”. Also, be aware, there may be an additional fee or cleaning charge.
All accommodation is different, but here are some of the key things to look out for depending on where you choose to stay:
- Make sure there are adequate toilet facilities for your dog(s) – you don’t want to face a 3am trek should your pooch be caught short!
- Be aware, wherever you choose to stay that your dog may only be allowed in certain allocated areas, e.g. if you stay in a hotel, your dog may not be a allowed in the restaurant or if you stay in self catering accommodation, dogs on the furniture may be a no no!
Wherever you stay, remember to stick to the rules and be respectful.
^^ How not to travel! ^^
When it comes to travelling with your dog(s), safety comes first! Ideally, a harness and a dog seatbelt are the best way to do this but an alternative solution could also be a properly secured crate.
Long drives can quickly become uncomfortable for our pets so it’s important to make sure that you plan regular rest stops in to your journey and allow your pooch to stretch their legs, have some water and of course answer nature’s call!
Avoid travelling at the hottest point of the day also and always make sure that there is sufficient air circulation for your pet.
LISTS, LISTS AND MORE LISTS! Travelling with your pet, as you’ll have realised by now takes LOTS more planning than travelling with their human counterparts as they have different needs and requirements and as such, will also mean additional supplies! The best way to make sure you have everything they need is to make a list including everything you’ll need to take for your dog. Essentials may include:
- Dog Food
- Medication (if applicable)
- Food/water bowls
- Poo bags
- Doggy first aid kit
- Dog bed
- Extra towels – for trips to the beach!
At this point, you’re almost ready to start your staycation! Below, we’ve listed some final aspects you should be aware of:
- Make sure your dog’s microchip details are up-to-date and they always wear a collar and tag.
- Check the weather before you go to enable you to plan the appropriate dog friendly activities! This will also help you plan rest stops to make sure your dog stays hydrated if warm weather is on the cards!
- Finally, NEVER leave your dog alone in the car or tent/hotel/wherever you’re staying.
Now, you’re ready to go! Enjoy your staycation!