Travel with pets: What to do when you get there?
This article has some great tips on how to settle your dog in once you get to your destination. It is brought to you by our friends at DogFenceDIY.com. They have a complete guide to installing an underground dog fence system. They offer a variety of systems including the featured Innotek IUC-5100.
What to Do When You Get There
So you have just arrived at your pet transport destination, what should you do now? This article has nine tips for helping you settle in your dog as soon as possible.
1. Get some exercise. As soon as you get there, take your dog on a nice long walk to get them tired. Being tired triggers the dog's natural relaxation response and it will make settling into their new digs easier. While you are on the walk, have someone do all the unpacking so that the dog returns to a nice calm space.
2. Show Strong Leadership. Confidently lead the dog into their new home for the vacation. The dog is going to take cues from you on how to react. So leading them into your lodging decisively. The dog may have to use an elevator or escalator, and you need to set the tone for being calm and confident as they come to these new environments.
3. Feed first. As soon as you introduce the dog to your lodging, feed them and provide them with water. Providing the dog food in the space communicates to the dog that it is home. A filled water bowl is important particularly if you are going somewhere hot.
4. Get them a spot. Give the dog their own spot to sleep. If possible bring, bring the dog their own bedding so that it feels and smells familiar. Bringing the dog's own crate is even better as it gives them a nice enclosed place that will feel safe.
5. Get them a routine. Like at home, dogs thrive on a routine. So add a bit of structure to their day and establish a routine early on. If possible, try to make that routine similar to the routine you follow at home. For example if your routine at home is that when you wake up, the dog goes outside to go to the bathroom and then gets breakfast – then follow that routine on your vacation.
6. Secure the Premises. Take a look round the area where the dog will be staying and playing make sure there aren't any safety hazards. If there is a fenced in area where the dog will be staying unsupervised, inspect the fence to make sure it will hold the dog. Talk to the caretakers of the premises about any potential hazards and the rules for dogs. For examples ticks are often a summertime concern for dogs in rural areas.
7. Calm Time. Particularly, for the first few days after travel with pets, avoid engaging in any rough and tumble play. When everyone is on vacation the temptation is to cut loose and play the kind of games you might not play in your own home on a weekday. You don't want the dog getting in that frenzied excited state of mind, especially early on as it can quickly become something the dog thinks is normal in that space. So no 2am tug of war contests!
8. Designated Dog Sitter. In the first few days, the dog should get more supervision than normal. Make sure someone in the family is in charge of keeping an eye on the dog and making sure they stay safe at all times. As you and the dog become more comfortable you can throttle back on the supervision.
9. Enjoy. Both man and hound are on vacation so relax, be safe and have a great time!