Reasons to go on vacation without a dog
For some dog lovers, this is unthinkable. But sometimes your furry should stay home. A long and complicated one-way trip, stringent entry requirements, infection risks, extreme weather conditions, or even a ban on keeping dogs in the hotel or on the beach can make it difficult to bring your dog.
Also, the idea that you may have about the vacation you want can be very different from the needs of your canine friend. If what you want is to spend two weeks lying in the hotel pool, go skiing for a week or visit museums and churches, it is better that you leave your furry at home. Sick or ancient dogs should also avoid this type of effort and only take them in an emergency.
Dog-Free, Guilt-Free Vacations
Don’t worry. You’re not a bad caregiver for your dog if you decide you want to go on vacation without him. On the contrary, it is sometimes the most reasonable decision. In the cases mentioned above, leaving your faithful quadruped with friends, with a babysitter, or at a boarding house for dogs is undoubtedly the best option.
The important thing is that you plan this very well. In addition to the tourist guides, destinations, and activity programs for your holidays, you should find out about the different possibilities of leaving your furry. After all, you can only enjoy your vacation if you know that your dog is in good hands.
Do I get a dog sitter for my vacation?
Ideally, dogs should stay with family or friends during the prolonged absence of their persons. But this easy option is not always available, so a room in a dog hotel can be a good alternative. Here they stay in rooms with other dogs or separately, depending on how they get along with their peers.
The quality of accommodation can vary slightly depending on the dog sitter: from clean rooms lovingly decorated and filled with dog toys, anything is possible. There is also a big difference in terms of support staff.
Some pet-friendly hotels are family-run that tries to give enough attention to all the furry dogs, while others may have a single sitter for six or more dogs. What is clear is that individualized care that considers each dog’s need for exercise and entertainment is not guaranteed. The prices, which vary a lot, ranging from 10-50 dollars per day. Keep in mind that a high price is not always indicative of good quality.
Choosing a dog sitter
It would help if you inspected the dog hotel beforehand to ensure your furry is in good hands. Are the rooms clean and bright? Is the atmosphere relaxed and friendly? How many workers do they have, and what impression do they give you? How do they treat the furry, and how often do they take them out for a walk?
Are they given the food they are used to at home? All these doubts can only be clarified by visiting the hotel for dogs and talking with the manager.
Trust your instinct and your dog
Apart from visiting the kennel and checking the cleanliness, the number of dogs per caretaker, and the type of diet, it is important that you listen to your instinct and your faithful friend. Dogs have a pretty good sensibility for who they can trust and who they can’t. So how does your faithful friend behave in the residence for dogs? Is he curious and friendly with caregivers, or is he nervous and shy?
A pension for dogs is not a suitable solution for everyone. Some are susceptible to changes in the environment, lack of attachment figure, and unfamiliar people and dogs. This is very stressful for the dog, so you should think carefully about whether the dog residence is the most suitable for your quadruped. On the other hand, if your faithful canine friend quickly gains confidence in other people and likes to play with other dogs, then a stay in a friendly dog hotel may be a good place for him, and he may even perceive it as a vacation too.
If your dog is suspicious and doesn’t adapt well to change, a sitter is likely a better option. Dog sitters take care of one to a maximum of three dogs at a time, which guarantees individualized treatment and excellent care. In general, the dog goes to live in the caregiver’s house during the absence of his family. Despite the change of environment, he continues to be in a family environment with a routine similar to his home.
The first contact with a sitter
Most dog sitters do not offer their services commercially but take them in at their leisure. These are usually people who already have (or had) a dog and who enjoy spending time with dogs. Since no special permit is required, as in dog hotels or shelters, anyone can become a sitter. That is why there is a wide variety of sitters with extensive experience.
Before leaving your faithful friend in the hands of a caregiver, it is recommended that you meet him several times. Visit him multiple times and see how he treats your dog and how it reacts to its new friend. Above all, when the caretaker already has another furry one, you have to make sure that the dogs get along.
Without a doubt, let the caregiver know what you expect of him before you go on vacation. The more precise you are about food, entertainment, outings, care, and other activities, the better it can prepare to meet your requirements and expectations. Of course, asking all these questions and requirements can be uncomfortable, but remember that you are doing it for the sake of your faithful canine friend. After all, you can only enjoy your rest knowing that your quadruped is fine.
Prices and other formalities
Apart from assistance on holidays, most dog sitters usually offer an hourly service, which ranges from 10-25 dollars/hour, depending on the experience and the necessary care. If the dog stays a couple of days, they usually calculate a daily price, which varies according to the dogsitter.
In addition to agreeing on the price, it is necessary to clarify if you have an insurance policy. If the dog sitter officially offers his services in exchange for money, he should have dog liability insurance. Some private liability insurance also covers the damages caused by a dog. If this is your case, make sure you read the clauses of the policy well.
Apart from talking about the price and the insurance, it is important to talk about possible emergencies. For example, what happens if the caregiver suddenly becomes ill and can no longer take care of your dog? Who will take care of it? What if the dog suddenly gets sick? Can the sitter take him to the animal hospital? Can he administer medications, and how much decision-making power do you give him? The more you plan, the more prepared you will be for potential contingencies.
Taking proactive planning into account and a good understanding with the dog sitter or manager is essential for your dog to be in good hands. That is why you must take care of the accommodation as soon as possible. Especially because small dog hotels only admit a few animals and are usually full during the holiday season. Clearly, there are business trips or hospital admissions that are unpredictable and require a quick fix.
In the best of cases, before acquiring your dog, you would have already considered this and asked your family, friends, and neighbors if they could take care of your furry in case of emergency. If you do not have these types of contacts, it is best to have a dog sitter, whether you are going on vacation or not. Ideally, your dog and the sitter get to know each other beforehand and establish a bond of trust. It will be much easier for you to leave your faithful friend with him rather than with an unknown caregiver.
In case of emergency
In addition to sitters and dog hotels, several animal shelters offer short-term accommodation, for example, if you have a medical emergency. However, it would help if you kept in mind that the multitude of animals, the unknown workers, and the unusual routine of other dogs who also miss their persons is quite destabilizing for a dog used to the tranquillity of his home.
Hosting your dog in a shelter should be your last resort. To avoid this stress for your dog and you, you must take care of finding alternatives right now, whether you are planning a trip or not. You may suddenly need someone who can take care of your furry.
Ideal Vacation destinations for dogs
The decisive factor for a vacation that entertains both you and your furry dog is a destination that meets both your needs and those of your quadruped. This is not always easy. You may be dreaming of a hammock by the pool and a tasty cocktail, while your dog prefers the shade of the woods, the cool lakes, and many outings.
People who prefer an active vacation in nature go for walks, bike rides, and long walks on the beach have it easier when sharing the trip with their quadruped. Hiking vacations in the mountains are ideal for very active dogs that need to get out a lot, and those who enjoy the water can join the dog beach vacations. In travel guides and on the internet, you will find numerous tips on trips and excursions with dogs.
Have you found a vacation destination that pleases both the dog and the rest of the travelers? Congratulations! The first step is already done. Now you have to find the right accommodation. Whether it is a hotel, a vacation home, or a campsite, they have to allow the keeping of dogs.
To avoid unpleasant surprises, always ask when in doubt. Keep in mind that sometimes the operators of the place decide based on the size or breed of the dog. If they are allowed, the next thing is to check that there are enough options in the environment to go out for a walk. For example, a hotel room on the sixth floor without a balcony is not suitable.
A vacation home with a little garden is much more convenient. A vacation at a campsite with a tent or motorhome is ideal, since the dog spends a lot of time outdoors, taking into account that dogs are allowed on the campsite. It is also important that there are lots of shady spaces. The accommodation environment should also have places to park the car, meadows, forests, or beaches where your furry can move.
If you have found the ideal accommodation for you and your dog, the most difficult thing is already done. But before making the final reservation, you must clarify the following questions:
- What are the entry requirements for dogs in the destination country? The best place to find out is at the embassy of the relevant country.
- What vaccines does the dog need? First, you must go to the veterinarian in time so that he can administer the corresponding vaccinations before starting the trip.
- Is your dog insured abroad? Read the insurance policy well and if you have doubts, ask your insurance.
- In the case of travel by train, ferry, or plane, what are the transport conditions that apply according to each company?
Depending on flexibility, it is recommended to choose a season to travel in which the destination country is not too hot, the dogs are not in heat, and there is no shedding of hair that requires much care. If the holidays are close, you must start packing in time. Don’t just think about the sun cream, the hiking boots, and the camera. You should also pack your furry needs.
My dog’s luggage
- Bed or blankets to sleep
- Food and water bowl
- Abundance of the usual dog food
- Brush or comb for coat care
- Leash and collar
- Vaccination record
- Health certificate
- Passport for pets
- Favorite toy
- Stool bags
- Towels Whistle
- Bottled water
The travel kit
You should also be prepared for small emergencies during your vacation. The following products for your furry should not be missing in your travel kit:
- Thermometer to measure fever
- Disinfectant spray
- Tick remover tweezers
- Charcoal tablets (for diarrhea)
- Types of bandages (bandage cloth, elastic bandages, cotton, sterile compresses)