Tips on keeping your dog safe while traveling

Millions of dog owners in the United States consider their pets to be part of the family, so it comes as no surprise that many dogs are included in travel plans each year. Whether you’re traveling by car or plane, taking a little extra time to prepare for the trip will make a significant difference in your dog’s experience.

The American Kennel Club offers the following canine travel tips.

— Dogs get anxious, too. Many of the issues dogs face when traveling by car — most commonly motion sickness — are caused by anxiety. Before taking your four-legged friend on a long trip, get him acclimated to car rides by taking him on frequent short trips. Take him to fun places like the dog park so he doesn’t associate the car only with going to the veterinarian or the groomer.

— Experiment with feeding. Before hitting the road for your trip, experiment with your dog’s feeding habits. Some dogs do better having not eaten for several hours before getting in the car, while others need to have a small meal immediately before the ride. Use the short rides to test out your dog’s preferred feeding schedule for your road trip.

— Research flights. If you plan on taking your dog with you on a flight, try to book a nonstop flight to your destination rather than one with a layover. Pets remain in the plane’s hold when it is stopped on the ground, which can increase anxiety levels.

— Invest in a crate. Instead of renting a crate for your dog, consider purchasing your own prior to traveling. This will give your dog time to become comfortable in it before the flight, and you will have it to use when traveling in the future.

— Have identification. It is extremely important that your dog has proper identification, including a collar and a microchip, should they get lost. Your dog's tag should include your name and cellphone number on it and you should check with your recovery service provider prior to traveling to ensure that all information is up to date. For more information about microchipping and pet recovery service, visit


For more tips on dog ownership, visit the AKC at


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