Whether you’re taking your furry pal(s) to a relaxing beach destination or buzzy international city this summer, please perk up your ears to hear my alpha barks now. With an upright tail, I’ll bark out my expert tips on how to keep your dog healthy on your next summer vacation! ARF, sniff out my tips for summer travel with your dog below.
#1 Tip for Summer Travel with your dog – Always have WATER on the go
When traveling over the summer, it’s imperative to keep your dog hydrated. Pack a water bottle along with to-go bowls for the actual trip and daily outings. If you’re traveling by plane, train, bus, or any mode of transportation where he cannot readily relieve himself, then you would have to limit his water intake to a certain degree to prevent the probability of accidents. It’s about finding that balance of keeping him hydrated enough, but not to a point where he will have trouble relieving himself during the trip. Please make sure he gets ample opportunities to relieve himself before and after the trip. If your dog is a veggie lover like me, be sure to pack a bag of crunchy cool cucumber slices as they are refreshing and hydrating.
#2 Tip for Summer Travel with your dog – LISTEN to your dog
Dogs may not speak “human” language, but we certainly have a way of communicating with our humans. If you see your dog panting uncontrollably, laying down or finding shade during a walk, please take it as a sign that he needs a break. Retreat to a shady or cool area and provide him with some fresh cold water.
#3 Tip for Summer Travel with your dog – Keep him COOL
As we all know, heat is extremely dangerous to dogs. From excessive panting to heat strokes, dogs can suffer (and even die) in the summer heat. Keep your dog away from deadly temperatures – if it’s too hot for you, it’s definitely too hot for your dog – remember we do have hair on our coat! Any day with temperatures near or above 85 degrees Fahrenheit or 29 degrees Celsius is worth being wary. Be YORKIE smart, monitor the weather forecast, and schedule walks accordingly – e.g. during times when the temperatures are lower and more comfortable (early in the morning before or shortly after sunrise and in the cool evening after sundown). And, NEVER ever leave your dog in a hot car, not even for “a minute.” It sounds like a no brainer, but countless tragic instances have occurred where dogs have died from such preventable human neglect or error.
#4 Tip for Summer Travel with your dog – Give him a HAIRCUT
Haircuts obviously do not apply to short-haired dogs, but they are the best way for a long-haired dog like myself to prepare for the heat. My human always makes sure I get at least a trim before I head to any warm climate destination. With the excess hair off from my face and body, I feel light, comfortable, and summer-ready. If you don’t trust professional groomers, you can carefully trim him yourself with a personal grooming set.
#5 Tip for Summer Travel with your dog – LIMIT exercise (during hot days)
It’s also wise to limit the duration of walks and outdoor playtime for your dog on hot summer days. Of course, allow him to relieve himself outside throughout the day, but he shouldn’t be exerting nearly the same amount of energy as he normally would. If your dog has a known heart condition or perhaps collapsed trachea (like me), please exercise caution whenever exposing your dog to extreme heat even for a short period. Again, always have water ready!
#6 Tip for Summer Travel with your dog – Get him a CHOKE-FREE harness
Choke-free harnesses are vital for your dog’s health regardless of the season. Prevent choking and breathing difficulty (which are more prone on hot summer days) by gently putting a choke-free harness on your dog before a walk. I always suggest purchasing one made with soft, breathable material so it helps with ventilation like the blue one I have HERE.
#7 Tip for Summer Travel with your dog – Give him a refreshing COLD shower
Wanna cool down? Human or dog – simply hop in a cold shower or bath OR get hosed down with some refreshing cold water! GRRR I hate taking baths (or anything that has to do with water, really), but I am less likely to refuse to nice cold shower on a hot summer day. HAH, I may even stay in the tub for a little longer. ARRRRF, it sure feels amazing afterward!
#8 Tip for Summer Travel with your dog – Make sure he has enough VENTILATION (on travel days)
Ventilation is crucial on travel days! Despite the mode of transportation (plane, bus, train, ship, car, etc.), he must have adequate ventilation for the entire journey. If he’s traveling in a carrier, you should carefully select a carrier that’s most ventilated, spacious, and cushy-comfortable so he isn’t suffering or panting the entire time. Like my carrier? Get yours HERE.
#9 Tip for Summer Travel with your dog – Get some COOLING pads
Cooling pads offer a safe and effective way for dogs to cool down faster and prevent the dangers of overheating. They come in all sizes so you can probably find one that best fits the inside of your dog’s carrier to combat the heat on any travel day. The bigger ones are usually collapsible so they still make for easy packing. I love The Green Pet Shop Self-cooling Pet Pad – it’s safe, non-toxic, easy to use, easy to clean, and rechargeable. Most importantly, it WORKS!
#10 Tip for Summer Travel with your dog – Choose the RIGHT accommodations
In addition to finding “dog-friendly” accommodations, you should confirm that your hotel or apartment offers air conditioning and does NOT have strict rules on dogs being left alone in the room. If you’re going on a day trip or an all-day excursion that’s not dog-friendly, then you should have the option of leaving him comfortably inside an air-conditioned room with access to water, food, and toys. Some hotels forbid leaving dogs alone in the room (and even require them to be crated) while others are completely flexible. So do your homework ahead of time.
In certain parts of the world, keys are needed to activate the electricity (e.g. A/C unit) in the room so please make sure you have an extra one before taking off. Don’t forget to take him out for a walk before departure and upon return so he has chances to relieve himself. As a general suggestion, don’t leave him alone for more than 6-8 hours, especially if he suffers from separation anxiety. After all, you brought your dog along so you two could enjoy the vacation TOGETHER.
Hope you like all my tips for summer travel with your dog. Enjoy your summer!
Wanna learn more on how to travel with your dog? SNIFF ME OUT.
Markin’ it up,
Roger Wellington a.k.a. The Doob
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