Pet Care During Vacations

The moment pet parents think of taking a vacation, the first question to strike their mind is “Where do we keep our four legged baby?” Pet care in vacation is still a challenging task for most pet parents. As apartment residents, you can keep in mind a few Best Practices to ensure you have your stress free downtime while your pet dog or cat or hamster is well taken care of.

Pet care in vacation

Best Practices for Pet Care in Vacation

One of the top three reasons given for pet abandonment is lack of infrastructure to avail while on vacations. This is a misconception. Majority of urban cities have a broad network of pet creches and pet homestays who take complete care of your pets while you are out of town. Here are some things to remember :

For The Short Term

  1. Buddy System : If you are using ADDA in your Community, you can find pet parents in your neighbourhood in the Groups section. For short trips (24-72 hours), you can ask your pet parent buddy to help with overseeing your pets.

    For short trips, you can leave your pets back at home. Ensure they have access to dry food and water all the time. For this, you can invest in food bowls and water bowls that use gravity to refill the empty bowls. Request your pet parent buddy to give them wet food/ home food once a day and clean their litter spots.
    
  2. Pet Creches, Homestays, Professional Pet Sitters : For long holidays (beyond 72 hours), it is strongly recommended to keep your fur kids in creches, homestays or hire a professional pet sitter. Every city has location based pet parents’ groups on Facebook/Instagram. The moment you adopt a pet, join these groups. These will help you find popular trusted pet holiday homes in your city.

    For residents in Bangalore, you can click this link for a few contact details of Pet Creches and Homestays in this city.
    
  3. Holiday with Pets : With increasing acceptance of pets as valued family members, several hotels are opening their doors to welcome pets. A simple Google Search will show you if any pet friendly hotel is available in your tour destination. If yes, take your fur kid and multiply the fun.

For The Long Term

  1. Adopt A Pair : It always helps to adopt a pair of pets rather than having a single pet. This helps to ensure your pets do not suffer from separation anxiety since they have company. This helps them deal with the separation when you are off to the beaches or the mountains.
  2. Regular Socialisation Exercises : Make it a practice to take your pets for play dates with other pets in the apartment community. This helps them regulate their behaviour in presence of other animals. This is especially helpful when you have to leave them with pet sitters while on vacation.

Things to Remember For Pet Care In Vacation

If you are availing creche or homestay services for pet care in vacation, make sure the following is taken care of :
a. Deworming and vaccination records must be updated.
b. If your pet is above 6 months old, they should be sterilised.
c. Your pets must have their nails trimmed and groomed.
d. Do not forget to administer a vet approved pre-emptive flea treatment, like Spot-Ons.
e. Update your chosen pet caretakers about special prescription diets your pet may be on.
f. Make sure any medical conditions like diarrhoea, flu, fevers are healed and taken care of before they are taken to the creche.

Click here to download a checklist of To-Dos to Prep your Pets For Creches.

Travelling with Pets for Vacations

By Flight

  1. Call your local airport and check if pet travel is allowed during your travel dates.
  2. Make sure deworming, vaccination, flea treatments are up to date. Pets above 6 months are advised to be sterilised.
  3. Get a Fit to Fly certificate from your vet. The certificate should not be more than 48 hours old.
  4. Arrange for an IATA approved cage. You can rent or buy one easily. Attach a portable water dispenser to the cage to ensure your pet is hydrated throughout the journey. The cage should be a few inches bigger than the pet to ensure they have enough space to move. Layer the floor of the cage with a warm comfortable bedding.
  5. Reach the Airport at least 4 hours before departure to complete the formalities – weighing of the pet, verification of their medical documents.
  6. If the weight of your pet and the cage together is less than 5kgs, you shall be allowed to travel with them in the flight cabin, else your pet travels in the cargo.

By Rail

  1. Book either 2 or 4 confirmed AC First Class Ticket. The reason for sticking to even numbers is ease of coupe or cabin allocation.
  2. Keep your pets’ medical records up to date. Get a Fit to Travel certificate from your vet not more than 48 hours prior to travel.
  3. 24-36 hours prior to your travel, submit a written application to the designated officer requesting the allocation of a coupe (for 2 tickets) or a cabin (for 4 tickets). Contact your Source Station to know who is the right person to address for that Railway Region.

    This allocation is based on availability of the coupe or cabins. Confirmation is sent within 12 hours prior to departure.
  4. On day of departure, reach the station 3-4 hours prior departure time to complete formalities – weighing your pets, verification of documents.
  5. In the cabin, have a temporary litter set up for their excretion needs. Carry enough wet food. Pets tend to drink less water and eat less food while travelling.
  6. Always keep your pet on a harness and leash for their safety.

We hope this blog helps you plan your holidays better and with lesser stress about your pet care in vacation. Do post vacation pictures of your pets in your social handles (FB/Instagram) and tag us. We would love to be a part of your experience.

You can also check out our blog on Pet Laws for apartment residents here.

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About the Author: Karnika Roy