Tips for Taking Four-legged Friends on Holiday Trips
As travelers make their way to holiday destinations this year, many will be taking pets along for the ride. Many of the AskPatty staffers have pets of their own, so we know that -- like the rest of your family -- you don't want to leave them behind when your family is traveling to special celebrations.
Don't forget: your pets' safety, comfort, and compliance with local rules of the road should be considered with each trip they take. If you're planning a road trip with your pets, Jiffy Lube has shared a list of safety tips to help to make the trip safe and enjoyable:
- Dogs and cats need to be secured properly, both for their safety and yours. Several states now require animals to be secured in vehicles. Plus, approximately half of the states have fines for not restraining pets riding in vehicles. Also, do not allow them to ride in seats equipped with frontal airbags, which could injure them severely in an accident.
- The ASPCA cautions against allowing pets to ride with their heads out the window of a moving vehicle where dirt or debris can injure their ears, eyes, and noses. Not only do they risk being hit with a flying object, but they are also at risk of inner ear damage and lung infections. The first and best option is to crate your animal for the duration of the trip. Cats should always be confined to a cage or in a cat carrier to allow them to feel secure and prevent them from crawling under your feet while you are driving. For large animals, a more feasible option is to use a special harness that attaches to your vehicle's seatbelt. Crates and harnesses are available at your local pet store, though many automobile manufacturers offer a dog guard/compartment divider that keeps pets safely in the rear cargo area of station wagons, "crossover" vehicles, and SUVs.
Traveling with pets in the car brings special challenges that, fortunately, can be met with a bit of forethought and careful preparation of both the vehicle and pet. Subaru and the American Veterinary Association have created an excellent little brochure with lots more information to help make it easier to travel with your pets. Click here to download a color copy of the AVMA/Subaru Traveling With Your Pet brochure.
We wish safe holiday travels for all your family members, and your pets as well!