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Tips for traveling with your pet

Jul 15, 2017 | Lifestyles

(Welcome to the weekly pet column of Pet Connection Programs Inc. of Marilla, N.Y. A new article is posted each week, so be sure to check back on a regular basis!)

Long before you pack up your family pet to join you on vacation, find out what you need to do to make sure that their trip is safe and comfortable. You need to familiarize yourself with the requirements to allow your pet entry to your destination as well as what you need to do to keep them safe once you have arrived.

Common requirements for admission into other countries include rabies vaccination, tapeworm treatment and tick treatments. Your pet may need to be microchipped. You may also need blood tests to prove your pet is free from disease-causing agents like rabies, Leptospira, Leishmania, Ehrlichia and Brucella.

Once your pet is ready to travel, it’s important to be prepared for the risks that may exist at your destination. Just as people prepare for travel with specific preventive measures, your pet needs to be protected. Beyond the care regularly recommended by your veterinarian, your pet may need additional vaccines or preventive medication. 

Parasites: Different kinds of parasites are found around the world. Warm and temperate climates can host some particularly nasty parasites that can cause irritation, but may also transmit other diseases.

Viruses: Diseases caused by viruses, such as rabies, can be much more common in other parts of the world. These viruses may put people at risk and can cause serious illness or death.

Bacteria: While all pets (and people) have a large amount of normal bacteria, some bacteria can cause serious disease. Pets may be more likely to become infected if they have skin wounds, eat contaminated food or drink from contaminated water. 

Talk to your veterinary team about any upcoming travel and find out how to best protect your pet. 

Getting There

By car – Pets should be restrained in a secure carrier or with a pet seatbelt to prevent them from being ejected from the vehicle in the event of an accident. Leave time for regular bathroom breaks and keep a leash at hand to prevent dogs from running when you open the door. Cats should have access to a litter box and some quiet time to use it. Talk to your veterinary if your pet suffers from car sickness.

By train – Confirm where your pet will be kept; you may not be able to keep your pet with you. Also plan for motion sickness and know how you will provide your pet with access to food, water and bathroom breaks.

By air – Make sure that you have an airline-approved crate or carrier for your pet. Many owners wonder about sedating their pet for air travel. While this may help relax the pet, it can interfere with your pet’s ability to adjust to changing temperatures and can pose a greater risk to your pet’s health..
— PRNewswire

(For more information on pets and animal adoption, please visit www.petconnectionprogramsinc.com. Or, visit their Facebook page at www.facebook.com/PetConnectionProgramsinc. Located in Marilla, N.Y., Pet Connection Programs Inc. is a nonprofit maternity and special care shelter founded in 1984.)

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