If your pet is a much-loved family member, the last thing you want is to go on holiday without them.
Your furry family member can be a great travelling companion, especially if you’re headed to one of many pet-friendly caravan parks or camping spots in WA.
If it’s your first time travelling with pets, follow these tips for a trouble-free trip.
Before you set out check whether your accommodation provider allows pets. Many caravan parks are pet-friendly, but others may only accept small dogs or restrict dogs during the busier holiday seasons. Check the terms and conditions of the accommodation site you’re attending to make sure your pet will be welcome.
If you research locations and book as early as possible, you’ll have plenty of time to plan your trip. Remember to confirm your reservation and double check that it’s okay to bring your furry friend for added peace of mind.
Prepare Your Pet
Animals love routine but sometimes become confused or afraid if a big change happens. If your pet isn’t used to travelling, spend some time preparing them for a trip away from home. Slowly introduce them to new concepts, such as getting in and out of the car. This will be a big help for the journey ahead.
If your pet is easily excited, used to making noise and loves running around, a few training sessions before your trip could be beneficial. Consider setting up your tent or caravan on a normal night before your trip, and run through some procedures with your pet, giving them treats or other rewards for being good.
Pack the Essentials
Looking after your pet can be simple at home, but it’s a different story when you’re on the road. Pack the following items to make travelling with your pet easier:
- Disposable waste bags/litter tray
- Small spade for holes
- Collar and leash
- Hammer and stake
- Pet carrier
- Car seat covers/safety restraints
- Pet first-aid kit
- Pet bed/blanket
- ID tags
- Vaccination records
- Plenty of food and water
- Water and food bowl
- Towels for clean-up
- Pet insect repellent
Tip: Try putting all your pet’s materials together in one place, and then imagine what you’d need if you were away for a few weeks and couldn’t get to the store.
Keep Your Pet Safe
Ticks can be a problem for pets in Australia and are usually found in dense bush and long grass. Visit your vet before your trip to help guard your pet against fleas, ticks and other bugs. Some species of plants can also be dangerous, so know what to avoid.
Campfires are also a hazard for pets. Ensure your pet isn’t sitting too close or is upwind and not breathing in smoke. After extinguishing a fire, keep your pet at a distance, as they might try and investigate the hot embers.
If you’re going fishing on a jetty, keep an eye out for your pet, as they may find fish hooks and other harmful rubbish left behind.
Looking After Your Pet
Start by familiarising yourself with your pet’s first aid kit before your trip. The kit normally includes a towel (which can double as a sling), extra water and other essentials such as scissors and tweezers. If it doesn’t have one already, try including a saline eye wash for dirt or sand.
Check your pet regularly for thorns and burrs, especially if you’ve been walking through long grass.
Try to have a plan for your pet’s sleeping arrangements before night falls. Staking a leash to the ground will give them room to walk around while keeping them in camp. Pack their bed and some blankets for extra comfort, especially if it’s cold. Don’t forget to dispose of any leftover pet food before going to bed, to prevent attracting insects and unwanted wildlife.
Remember to pack any important documents for your pet, such as vaccination records. These may be helpful if an emergency occurs. Microchipping may also be a consideration if you’re worried about your pet getting lost.
With the right preparation, you can make travelling with your pet an enjoyable family getaway. Do you have other tips for travelling with pets? Let us know in the comments below.