Hit the road with your pets | Inquirer Lifestyle
Photo courtesy of Tetch Torres/ INQUIRER.net

Hit the road with your pets

Photo courtesy of Tetch Torres/ INQUIRER.net

MANILA, Philippines – Pet owners who are eager to travel with their pets can breathe easy with these essential travel tips and pet feeding practices, according to experts.

Check out this quick round up of pet Do’s to ensure a fun and safe vacation with your furry friend as provided by the Pet Food Institute (PFI), a company in the US promoting pet food, and Veterinary Practitioners Association of the Philippines, a group of practitioners in the fields of small animal, equine, swine and industrial medicine practices.

Pack Up the Supplies

Pets, like people, need a complete travel kit for the road ahead. Make sure that all your cat’s or dog’s supplies are loaded in separate luggage so that they are easily accessible. Pet food bowls, measuring scoops and serving spoons should be clean and ready for use. Don’t forget to pack any special items such as a can opener (if needed) and medicine. Pack some toys as well, as they can help reduce pet stress level while in transit and can be enjoyed once you arrive at your destination.

The most essential item in the bag is your pet’s food supply. Knowing the exact length of your trip should give you an idea of the amount of food that will be needed. It is best to include some reserves to support your pet’s diet in case you decide to extend the vacation.

Check with a Vet

Keep in mind that your pet will be introduced to a new environment. A pet may be excited to be in a new location, or it may find the change to be challenging because of various factors. Before departing for the trip, make sure your pet is up-to-date on all vaccinations and ask your veterinarian if any additional shots might be needed to protect your pet in the new surroundings.

Include a quick drive-by to your local animal expert in the pre-outing itinerary. It is wise to be sure that your pet is fit to travel. Your veterinarian should perform necessary examinations to determine if your cat or dog is ready to hit the road.

Experts can also advise you should your pet need any medications for potential travel sickness or anxiety.

Secure the Travel Plans

Identify your choice of vehicle ahead of time to settle the requirements for the trip.

Whether you choose to fly or drive, you should be able to match your travel plans with your pet’s needs.

Some airlines might not allow animals inside their planes. Be certain that you make a call to your transport provider of choice to guarantee that your cat or dog will be permitted to tag along.

Depending upon the size of your pet, you may be able to bring you pet with you onto the plane in a carrier, or it may have to go below deck in a kennel. Be ready to maximize the available space to make the flight comfortable for your pet.

A journey by road may be easier depending on your pet’s attitude towards riding in a vehicle. You can make quick pit stops and enjoy a short game to lessen the stress from several hours of being in motion.

Traveling by car will also enable you to accommodate your pet and control its behaviour.

Don’t Forget the Chow

Once at your destination, a top priority should be maintaining your pet’s feeding schedule. Varying your pet’s feeding schedule from what is followed at home can cause stress and create unintended problems.

The amount of food that you should give to your pet should be aligned with the recommendations on the pet food label, just like at home. The feeding frequency will also depend on your pet’s activity level, metabolism, and weight. So, however often the food is made available to your pet, the key is to measure the amount of food given. With older pets, as with puppies and kittens, it can be helpful to feed and hydrate several hours before bedtime to help avoid accidents.

It may be ideal to feed your pet a few hours before you get moving. Traveling on an empty stomach can reduce the chance of vomiting. Do not forget to keep your cat or dog well hydrated during the entire vacation, including travel days. Water is essential to keep your pet’s body temperature at an optimum level.

With the right feeding and care practices, you can support your pet’s good health, welfare, and long life.

Scientifically-formulated and nutritionally-balanced commercial US pet food will help your pet in all daily indoor and outdoor activities.

US pet food products meet or exceed strict regulatory requirements for safety and nutrition and will provide your cat or dog with sound nutrition whether at home or on the road.

In line with its responsible pet ownership campaign dubbed Well-fed, Well-nurtured, the Pet Food Institute urges Filipino pet owners to follow a healthy pet feeding program coupled with regular veterinary care so that owners can have a fun and memorable long weekend experience with their pets.

PFI aims to continue supporting initiatives such as workshops, informational materials, and partnerships designed to educate Filipino pet owners and support long, healthy lives for cats and dogs.