Holiday travel tips for pet owners

  • By David Aaron Moore The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
  • Saturday, November 24, 2012 5:27pm
  • Life

Though Grandma may welcome the kids with open arms as families travel for holiday visits, bringing along the family pet may elicit a different response.

So what do you do when your canine buddy or feline pal can’t join in the holiday fun? Here are some options:

Boarding: Boarding is particularly popular among dog owners, but pet lovers say to book early as slots in kennels and veterinarians’ offices fill up early.

Professional pet sitters: Pet sitters can be found through mutual friends or on websites such as www.petsitters.org.

“I have a longtime pet sitter I’ve worked with for many years,” said Norcross resident Laura Mason, the owner of an American tabby and a border collie.

“She’ll come by once daily — or twice for a slight additional charge, if I request — to make sure my animals have proper food and water,” Mason said. “She’ll take the dog for a walk, clean the cat’s litter box and spend quality time with them.”

Friends: A good friend who gets along well with a pet may be the most economical option. There are multiple bonuses: You know the person, and the pet knows the individual, as well. Just make sure the friend is aware of where the food is kept, how much the pet eats and drinks daily, and whom to call in the event of an emergency.

Take them along: If you do take Fido and are traveling by plane, talk with the airline about charges and potential hazards during transport. Air flight can be potentially traumatizing, and many airlines require sedation for the pet.

If you’re driving, it can be fun, or a nightmare, pet owners said. Cats generally don’t enjoy car rides, unless socialized from youth. If you’re traveling in a car with an older, inexperienced cat, keep the cat safe in a kennel. Don’t forget to bring a small portable litter box.

Generally, dogs see road trips as a fun outing.

Doggie treats, chew toys, a pallet and even soothing music may help to keep them calm.

Another important consideration is if you’re planning any overnight stays at a hotel. Visit www.officialpethotels.com for a list of pet-friendly places you can rest alongside your four-legged friend.

More in Life

New documentary chronicles Obama’s last year in White House

“The Final Year” doesn’t paint the administration in rosy colors, but it isn’t too critical either.

‘Forever My Girl’ takes a page from the Nicholas Sparks genre

The film based on a novel by Heidi McLaughlin is a well-worn tale of lost love and redemption.

Curries continues home-cooked Indian cuisine at new location

The restaurant, now located on Evergreen Way, also puts an Indian spin on Northwest cooking.

International guitar tour led by Lulo Reinhardt stops in Edmonds

International Guitar Night, now in its 18th year, is Jan. 24 at the Edmonds Center for the Arts.

New Cascadia Art Museum exhibit showcases mid-century designs

The exhibition includes ceramics, furniture, clothing, sculpture and jewelry from 1948 to 1966.

This beefy ex-cop has a delicate hobby: intricate paper-cut art

You can see Tom Sacco’s creations at the upcoming Everett Art Walk.

Slow-roasted vegetables make sumptuous sauce for pasta

Make the basic but good spaghetti with red sauce blissfully better with this recipe.

Mocking meatloaf: One man’s loaf is another man’s poison

Some don’t like it and some do. Here are six meatloaf recipes to try.

Roasted Brussels sprouts can be the apple of picky eater’s eye

Toasted sesame seeds and diced apple add flavors that compliment the sprouts’ earthiness.

Most Read