Dr. Jasmine Streeter, DVM Published: 09 August 2018
August is a popular months for travelers. Whether your packing up for a last-minute vacation out the country or heading off to a family reunion, it’s possible you may not be able to take your fur baby with you. I traveled extensively this summer and listed a few tips that helped keep my peace of mind while away from my little ones.
- Caregiver: Choose a responsible adult who truly enjoys spending time with your pets. Your pets should like them too! Give the caregiver a range of times to arrive and take care of your animals. It’s best to emulate their normal schedule as much as possible. For example, you might suggest they come between 7-9 a.m. and 12-2 p.m. Also, make sure the person you choose has adequate transportation so your pets won’t be placed in an uncomfortable position.
- Food & Water: Provide detailed instructions on feeding your pet while away. Write the amount of food to be given, how often to feed, and location where feeding should occur. Also inform the sitter of any quirks your pet has during meals or if they display food aggression. Note the location of food bins and where to find fresh water since many sitters may not be familiar with your home. Also provide enough food for the duration of your trip so your pet isn’t left hungry.
- Medication: Pets that require daily medications or special supplements should continue to receive their medications even if you are on vacation. Provide detailed descriptions and if possible a tutorial on how to administer your pets medication. Try to choose individuals who are comfortable and have experience administering pet meds. Make sure medications are clearly labeled and kept out of reach of nosey pets.
- Walks: If your pet sitter will be going on walks, show them the routes in your area that your dog or cat likes. Take them on a walk with you before leaving so you can answer any questions they have. Inform them if you pet is fond of other animals and dog parks or if they would appreciate a quiet stroll in Forest Park.
- Dog & Cat Proofing: When moms away, your pets will play. Many pets behave differently when separated from their families and may even become destructive. Take the time to puppy/kitty-proof your home before leaving to reduce the risk of accidents.
- Emergency Contact: Always leave an emergency contact in your area that can be contacted if something goes wrong. Inform the person you have listed so they will be aware they may be receiving a call. Hopefully everything runs smoothly, but its best to be prepared.
- Veterinary Information & Contact: Consider briefly reviewing a copy of your pet’s vaccine and medical history with your sitter. Provide your veterinary hospital information and nearest emergency hospital number in case your caregiver needs medical attention.
Wishing you amazing travels filled with beautiful moments, and for your pets, rest and relaxation on these hot summer days. Enjoy!
You can ask Dr. Jasmine your pet question or email your pet photo to firstname.lastname@example.org.