Dogs have long been one of the best travel companions you could ask for; they are comforting, fun and always excited to explore new places.
Travelling with your dog also means you can go away for longer periods of time without having to worry about getting a dog sitter or putting your pooch in the kennels. Plus, with more and more places becoming dog-friendly destinations, there is no better time to travel with your furry friend.
That was until Covid-19 hit and stopped most of our human travel plans in their tracks, let alone allowing pets to go abroad. But as restrictions begin to ease and travel resumes, you might be considering a getaway with your dog this year.
That being said, it’s important to remember that Covid-19 is far from over and that the rules are still a little different right now, which is why we’ve put together this guide.
Below, we’re going to take a look at everything you need to know about travelling with your four-legged friend in a post-Covid world.
Be aware of how Covid-19 can impact dogs
First and foremost, it’s a good idea to educate yourself on how Covid-19 impacts dogs, just in case your dog does contract the virus. While these cases are very rare, there have been reported cases in the past, and it is a risk you’re going to be taking if your dog travels abroad with you.
Thankfully, most dogs that have had the virus have been asymptomatic, but while the risk is low, there is always the chance that your dog could get sick. Not to mention you don’t want your dog spreading the virus to other animals if they do have it.
For these reasons, it’s best to get a dog carrier crate to limit contact and exposure during travel and speak to your vet before you leave about any possible treatments or medication you could take with you – just to be on the safe side.
Know the current restrictions for your chosen destination
Another part of travelling with your dog is understanding the current restrictions for your chosen destination for both you and your dog. It’s important to keep up to date with these as rules and regulations are changing all the time, just as the number of cases are.
So firstly, you need to ensure that you are flying with an airline that allows you to take pets; otherwise, you’ve fallen at the first hurdle. Then, look into whether you need to isolate when you arrive at your destination, as well as when you need to take PCR tests before and after flights to ensure you’re meeting the local government guidelines.
You need to do this not just so you can follow the rules before and after travelling, but also because some places require you to isolate yourself in hotels for several weeks before letting you into the country. In these scenarios, dogs are often not allowed within the hotel. Therefore, additional arrangements will need to be made.
Know how to care for your dog during isolation
As we’ve mentioned, in some places, you’ll be required to isolate upon arrival; this could be for a few days or as long as two weeks. This means you need to be able to care for your dog during this time. And as we said before, some quarantine hotels do not allow pets, so you’ll have to make other arrangements.
This might mean having a local kennel or someone you know aboard; if you have friends or family there, come and collect your dog for you. This way, they can look after your dog while you are in quarantine. Just be aware of how this might make the dog feel if they’ve had a long flight, car or boat ride, only to go to an unfamiliar kennel or location.
If you’re able to quarantine at your chosen location, for example, a friends house or an Air BnB, then make sure there is a private outdoor space for your dog to use during the day as you will not be allowed to go out on walks.
You also need to make sure that you’re going to be able to get supplies to you and your dog while you’re isolating.
Be sure to plan ahead
As well as checking out regulations and making isolation plans, you should also plan ahead to make sure your dog will be able to go with you to most places. For example, restaurants and landmarks that you hope to visit. After all, if you have to sit outside in most places, that’s fine; just make sure you’re not going somewhere cold where you and the dog might struggle.
Finally, you need to make sure that you have all the correct documents you need for a smooth trip. Typically, you will need to get a dog passport for your pooch and possibly an Animal Health Certificate (AHC) as well.
It’s important that you check out what documents you need beforehand so you can get these in good time before your trip. It’s might also be a good idea to book an appointment at your vets as well, just to make sure your dog is healthy and ready for travel.
Are you and your dog ready for a getaway?
Travelling abroad with your dog is a wonderful and exciting time, but you need to make sure that you’re not going to be breaking any of the new Covid-19 regulations. Before you book and pay for your trip, always check the local government website and find out if your dog is going to need any extra documentation to travel with you.
In particular, think about how isolating away from your dog might impact both them and you, as this might affect your decision to go to certain destinations. If you think it’s going to be too much for your dog to bear being away from you in a strange place, perhaps go somewhere else for now.
And don’t forget, when travelling, there is always a risk of catching Covid, so make sure that you and your dog are up to date with relevant vaccines and have travel insurance just in case.
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