Preparing your dog before you leave for a holiday

by Akshay Mirchandani

Your dog, your best friend is a member of your family, and leaving for vacation will be hard on both of you. However, with some preparation, you can definitely prepare your dog successfully before you leave for your holiday. Here are a few steps and tips to help you and your little one:

  1. Find the perfect place for him to stay

You can make your dog stay with your veterinarian or at a kennel nearby, but hiring a pet sitter is often the best option for your dog. Whatever option you choose, be sure to inform all parties involved about your dog’s needs, routines, likes, dislikes and quirks. Also provide them all the necessary health information, including your vet’s contact info.

  1. Spend some extra time with your dog

Spending extra time with your dog before you leave will definitely help both of you. Your dog appreciates all of the time he gets to spend with you so make sure to give him plenty before you leave! A little goes a long way, so a few extra cuddles on the couch or an additional daily walk are a big deal for your best friend.

  1. Meet the pet sitter/staff at the kennel

Make sure you allow your dog to meet the pet sitter or the staff at the kennel a couple of times before you leave as this will help him feel more comfortable with the people he will be staying with while you are gone. He will feel like he is staying with someone he knows pretty well rather than a complete stranger.

  1. Inform your dog’s care-taker in case he has separation anxiety

If your dog experiences separation anxiety, you should discuss it with your dog’s caregiver about his symptoms. Be sure that your dog won’t be left alone for long periods of time, or at all if the separation anxiety is extremely intense. Training for separation anxiety takes time and you can contact us right away to learn more about it or discuss it with your vet.

  1. Keep a few familiar items with your dog

A major advantage of having a pet sitter come to your home is that your dog’s surroundings will remain the same. However, in case your dog is staying elsewhere, you can pack a piece of home to go with them. One thing that you have to be certain about is your dog’s bed and that it stays with your dog while you’re away. This will help as the bed will smell like you and your home and make him feel more comfortable while you are away. Other comforting items that you can include are your dog’s usual food and treats, one of your shirts or a pair of your socks to smell. You can also pack a special blanket which you can purchase about a week before you leave if you don’t have one already so it can pick up all the scents of home. Burrowing is a comforting action for many dogs and it will definitely put him at ease.

  1. Ensure plenty of exercise for your dog before you leave

This simple, tried and tested tip is key for your dog’s happiness. Take a walk, play fetch, or otherwise get your dog moving right before you pack up. Expending some energy will help your dog feel more relaxed through the changes that he will be feeling while you are leaving.

Your dog can usually easily pick up on your emotions. So, if you’re feeling anxious about leaving him, he will feel anxious about you leaving as well. And, if you’re feeling comfortable (though of course, you’ll miss him), your dog will feel the same way! So be strong through the process and enjoy your holiday! Contact us right away in case of any queries!