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Your Jack Russell Puppy Care Checklist - Jack Russell Crazy Issue #30
June 04, 2012
Have Dog, Will Travel!
Warm weather and breaks in school can mean only one thing…..Vacation! Yes, please. Count me in! Planning a trip for yourself or a family is complicated enough but if you plan to take your Jack along, you’ve just added in another element of complexity. A little effort prior to the trip can go a long way in making sure things run smoothly.
Going on a road trip? Here are some things to consider:
To minimize distractions on the road, have your Jack in his crate or with a seat belt leash. (If you are familiar with American politics….don’t do what one presidential hopeful did – strapped his crated dog to the roof of his car during a family road trip!). Some states like New Jersey are cracking down on drivers with dogs who have their heads out the window (yes, I know how cute it looks, but it can be dangerous).
Bring along familiar toys, bedding and food to make your Jack feel comfortable. Just how humans like their creature comforts, so do our furry friends. Even more importantly, bring your Jack’s brand of dog food. When you are traveling you may not be able to find your Jack’s particular brand. Introducing a new food can easily wreak havoc on a dog’s digestive system that may already be stressed due to travel. Same goes for water. Take along water from your sink and as you go along gradually introduce new municipalities. Diarrhea can certainly dampen the vacation spirit! Be sure to keep an extra gallon of water in the car just in case you get stuck somewhere on the side of the road. Stop often for water and walking breaks, yourself included. I have many memories of someone in my family getting carsick. Dogs are not immune to this. Feed your Jack a light meal a few hours before you get in the car and then minimally along the way. Ice cubes are a great way to keep your Jack occupied and hydrated when you first start out. If you read our last newsletter then you know not to leave your Jack alone in the car for even just a few minutes. The temperature inside a car on a hot day quickly rises and can be treacherous.
Before embarking on your trip, make sure you double check pet policies where you are staying. Even though an establishment claims they are pet friendly sometimes it just means that they are pet tolerant. Make sure to ask if there a daily or weekly pet charge, if the dog be left alone in the room if he is in a crate, and triple check weight and breed restrictions. If your Jack has a habit of jumping on furniture consider bringing old sheets to cover things so that you don’t incur any extra charges, especially if you know you will be hiking. Also, bring extra plastic baggies for doggie clean up.
Use the internet to check out the surrounding areas of where you will be stopping. There may be some outdoor pet friendly cafes that your Jack can dine alfresco with you or a fun outdoor festival that is dog friendly. Make sure to check pet policies at state and national parks, as not all allow dogs. Also see if there are dog parks close by to where you are staying so that your Jack can get some exercise. You may even want to see where the nearest animal hospital is just in case.
Create an emergency kit for your Jack. Include a current photo, current shot records and topical medication. Make sure everything is up date. If by chance you need to board your Jack at a facility, you will need proof of vaccinations and rabies shots. Also make sure your Jack’s tag has your current cell phone number on it even if he is microchipped. And to take it a step further consider taping local hotel information to his tag just in case.
While all of this sounds so stressful, with a little prep you should be able to relax and enjoy your vacation. Happy travels to everyone!
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'Til Next Time...
Take care - and take care of your JRT!
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