Happy Holidaying with your Dog Hints and Tips
Taking your pooch on holiday is essential for many of us nowadays. Our pet pooches are very much a part of the family and many people want them with them on holiday, particularly when taking a break in the UK or Ireland. Putting a doggy in kennels isn't good for you as you may end up worrying about them on holiday and you may both miss each other, so booking a pets welcome holiday home can work out as the best option all round!
Check our tips for a happy and healthy holiday for you and your hound especially if it is the first time you have been away together.
Find a Truly Dog-Friendly Place to Stay
• Check How Pet-Friendly the Cottage is Before Booking.
When booking your cottage break, check how pet-friendly the property is. Holiday homes can vary quite widely in terms of how dog-friendly they are. Ask about restrictions such as number of dogs, breeds and size and find out if there are any areas of the property that will be off limits to your four-legged friend, as well as any special facilities they have for pets.
• Bedrooms are usually Off Limits for Four-Legged Friends!
It is not unusual for holiday homes to specify that doggies be kept out of bedrooms and off beds.
• Cottages with Enclosed Secure Space for your Pet are Recommended.
Cottages with Safe Enclosed Gardens where dogs are allowed to run free often work out as the best choice for dog owners. Also consider renting a lodge, cabin or cottage in a private location where your pet's barking won't be a concern to anyone else. Some holiday homes that don't have their own private enclosed secure garden may have easy access to good doggie walks close by, but for ease and a relaxing holiday renting a property with its own safe secure dog-friendly garden is recommended.
• Can your Pooch be Left Alone?
Inevitably when you're on holiday, at some attractions you won't be able to take your pet with you. If you are planning on visiting attractions where your canine friend won't be welcome, do check if you are allowed to leave your pooch in the accommodation alone prior to booking. Generally as most dog owners know, pets being left alone for too long is to be avoided, particularly in unfamiliar surroundings which may lead to pet stress and anxiety. Local pet-sitting services can help if you need your dog to be looked after whilst you enjoy exploring a new area.
Choose a Very Dog-Friendly Area for your Holiday
• Check Out If there are Dogs-Welcome Attractions.
When choosing whereabouts to holiday, do your research and check out what pet-friendly attractions are located nearby. Check out if there are good local walks and dog friendly pubs in the area and if there is a cottage of interest, ask the owner for information on how dog-friendly the area is, they may have some useful recommendations and tips.
• Consider Taking out Insurance.
If you're taking your dog away for the first time, as well as taking out standard insurance to cover your cottage holiday, consider whether it's worth taking out an accidental pet damage cover that covers holiday homes. Your beloved hound may be as good as gold at home but if feeling unsettled or anxious he may resort to chewing furniture or damaging things.
• Check your Pet's Vaccinations are up to date.
When booking your holiday, do double check to ensure that your pet's vaccinations are all up to date and that he or she is all up to date with their flea or worming treatments.
Pawfect Packing Tips
• Prepare a Doggy Checklist.
Before you pack make a list of all the things your dog may need and tick off as you pack. A separate bag for your dog is a good idea so you know everything is in one place and easy to find.
• Take your Pet's Favourite Foods with you.
Take all the food your doggy will need for the whole of your stay. You may not be able to get your usual brand where you are going and a change in diet can lead to an unhappy dog or an upset tummy. Neither of which you want to deal with on your long awaited break!
• Take your Pet's Familiar Things.
Take your dogs own bedding, blankets, toys and eating and drinking bowls. Having these familiar items around them will help your pooch to settle more quickly and feel confident and happy in their new surroundings.
• Check Out the Property.
On arrival make sure the property you are staying at is safe and secure. Do a quick check round making sure there is nothing your dog is likely to injure himself on or any areas of the garden he may escape from.
• Help your Dog Feel Settled.
Once you are happy it is safe for him to do so let your dog explore his new surroundings and get comfortable. Place his bed and toys somewhere near the rest of the family to help him settle in and feel safe. Take him on a good walk soon after your arrival so he can explore the surrounding area and recover from the long journey.
Tips on Exploring on Holiday with your Dog
• Take Water with You.
When out and about where possible it's recommended that you carry water and a bowl and offer often. At home your dog will be used to free access to his water bowl during the day. Try to discourage drinking from streams, puddles or the sea as they may be contaminated and salt water can cause sickness.
• Keep Pooch on the Lead.
Be careful letting your dog off the lead in unfamiliar places unless his recall is perfect. The excitement of new surroundings and smells means he may not return as well as usual. Be vigilant at all times, looking out especially for unexpected roads, water areas, cliff edges, wildlife or livestock.
• Make sure your dog is micro-chipped! Heaven forbid you were to get separated from your pet, you may have very little chance of being reunited unless your pet is microchipped. It is a legal obligation to ensure your dog is microchipped and wears a collar and identity tag with your name and address on when he is out in a public place. Be considerate to other holidaymakers and locals, not everyone is as in love with your pooch as you are, and of course ALWAYS pick up the poop!
Above all have an amazing holiday, preparation is key to a successful and relaxing time. You and your dog are always better safe than sorry.