In our family no vacation is complete without our family dog, Rigsby. He’s a spunky miniature schnauzer and we take him pretty much everywhere we go.  Of course it takes a little extra planning to make sure he’s safe, but it is worth it.  If you’re going to travel with your pet this summer take some of these safety tips along with you.

[highlight]Keep them safe in the car[/highlight] with the proper secure spot.  There are a few options you can choose from when it comes to car seat safety.  You can put them in a well ventilated crate or carrier if they get anxious or car sick, or just like to feel safely confined.  They need to have enough room to turn around and stand up in, plus it needs to be secured with a seat belt or strap. You can also use a harness and belt them in the back seat.  We like to put our dog on little booster bed with a harness that is belted into the seat.  This way he can be part of the action, but is still safe.

[highlight]Get them ready for the trip[/highlight] by taking them out in the car either in the crate or harness.  Start with little trips at first, then gradually increase the length of the trip.  This gets them used to their carrier and the car ride as well.  

[highlight]Pack a travel kit[/highlight] that includes their papers (especially if you’re going over state lines), extra food, water, a travel bowl or two, grooming supplies, medicine, and waste supplies. Pack their favorite toy and blanket as well to give them a sense of home.

[highlight]Update ID’s and/or microchips[/highlight] any time your pet is going out and about. It’s also a good idea to pack a spare collar with ID’s just in case they lose it while romping around outside of the car.  Take a recent pick of them and save it on your phone just in case.

[highlight]Never leave them alone in a car[/highlight] no matter how long or if the windows are open.  It only takes a few minutes for a car to reach scorching temps which could cause heat stroke. Do not let them ride with their head out of the window, it may seem fun and carefree, but it could turn deadly if they get hit from debris on that can fly up off the road.

There is nothing quite like a road trip with your favorite four-legged family member, keeping their safety and comfort in mind will make sure everyone has a great time while traveling.