Travelling for the holidays can be a bit stressful for more than just you, your pets are affected by it too. We know that you already have a hundred other things to plan and think about, so we’ve made a quick list of the five most important things to do before you leave town.
1) Keep paperwork and vet info easy to access
Before you pack your bags, you should assess a few things when it comes to veterinary care for your pet while you’re away. Where will they go if there is an emergency? Where are their medical records and vaccine history?
Keep their medical paperwork in an easy-to-access location for whoever will be taking care of your pet while you’re gone. In the event of an emergency they may need this information to take to the vet.
It’s also important to write down or type out a document that lists your pet’s regular veterinarian and emergency veterinarian, including their address and phone number. That way your pet’s caretaker can take them straight in if they are unable to reach you.
2) Find the right pet caretaker
You want to leave your pet in trustworthy and loving hands, so it’s vital that you do some homework before just picking someone to pet sit or take your pet while you’re gone.
There are resources to find reputable pet sitters in Greensboro and surrounding areas as well as top-rated boarding facilities. Check into customer reviews of each pet sitter or boarding facility that you look at and view their website to see how the process works.
Your pet’s veterinarian may provide boarding services at their hospital as well, which could bring you ease of mind when you know that they have immediate care if something were to happen.
3) Make a thorough instruction sheet for your pet’s needs
Many people have pets that require daily medication, special feeding, or have certain restrictions. It’s very important to relay this information all in one place on a sheet of paper where the caretaker can see it.
Even the smallest detail means a lot when someone else is taking care of your best friend! Make sure that your pet sitter, boarding facility, or veterinarian has all of the most up-to-date information about your pet.
- How much and when to feed your pet
- Types of treats, if allowed
- How often to let them outside for potty breaks and where to go
- Whether they require a special harness or collar for walks
- If they don’t like cats, dogs, people, etc.
- Any medications that your pet needs and what the instructions are
- Allergies that the caretaker should know about
- If your pet isn’t allowed in certain areas of the home
4) Make sure your pet has enough food and medication
This is incredibly important (especially around the holidays!). Ensure that your pet’s food bin has enough to last them while you’re gone, otherwise you may end up in a sticky situation where the sitter has to go out and buy food for them.
Even more important than that is making sure that your pet has enough medication! Count the amount of pills left in each bottle and if you’re not sure go ahead and get a refill just in case. If your pet runs out of medication while you’re gone and your regular vet is closed your pet cannot get a refill of a medication at most emergency veterinarians without having an exam done first. Every prescription is required to have an exam by law.
There are even some medications that emergency vets don’t carry that your regular vet has prescribed. So the safest option would be to double check all of your pet’s medications and get an extra refill if you’re worried that they may run out.
5) Give your pet some exercise before leaving
Helping your pet get some energy out during the week before you leave can help with the transition. Go on some extra walks, play fetch at the park, or have some indoor fun with toys. The more tired they are the more relaxed they will be. It’s also a good idea for them to have playtimes or walks while they are boarding or have someone looking after them. It will help keep their mind off of the fact that you are gone.
We hope these tips helped. Print out this list as a reminder for your upcoming trip if you need to!