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7 Rules for Travelling with your pets

The Johnny Depp ordeal by Lillian Gaitho

image source; valevets.com

So Johnny Depp and estranged wife Amber Heard thought they could escape the sharp eye of the Australian immigration laws by trying to private jet their Yorkshire terriers into the Mother of World’s most livable cities. Well, we all know how the script went down from there; somber public apology, a beaten Amber and scared terriers. So, if you are about to board with your bulldog or take off with your turtle, here are a few rules as gathered by trip advisors Jovago.com, that you will definitely need to observe as you plan your trip.

Visit the Vet

Schedule your medical health checks hand in hand with your pets’ as well. As you get your travel shots to protect you through your trip, ensure that they also take up their check-ups and update all required immunizations and certification. Do not forget to carry a stamped copy of the certification as you will be required to present it at the airport or even boarding and border points.

Prep up your Pet

Animals, just like humans have anxieties and finding themselves in a carrier for hours on edge is likely to get to their nerves. Also, finding themselves in unfamiliar locations could also cause discomfort and anxiety. It helps if you can take your pet for short drives, or even walks into unfamiliar territories just to acquaint them with new surroundings as well as help them build their confidence in you. If you will be using a carrier or crate, save some time and let them get familiar with the medium as well.

Book early for the best

Most airlines have a specified number of pets they can ferry in a single trip, so do buses and trains. For safety purposes, secure your pet’s seat at the same time as yours and make sure their space is purchased and preserved for them. Also, find out at the time of booking what will be expected or required of you, for instance, do you need to bring in your own carrier. Also, find out if your pet will travel with you or if they will have to sign in as cargo.

image source; greencrossvet.com.au

image source; greencrossvet.com.au

Direct flights/routes are best

Eight straight hours of restricted mobility is by no means an easy task and can at times be overwhelming for animals, resulting into withdrawal, fatigue and aggression. If there is a shorter route, go for it. If not, book direct flights to avoid transfer headaches as well as displaying ‘false’ illusions of ouch-down freedom.

Buying a crate / carrier

A good carrier is well ventilated and strong enough to protect the pet from being thrown around during travel. It also serves to restrain the animal from escaping off and causing scares or even actual harm. Apart from ventilation, other important factors to consider when shopping include the size; your pet should be able to sit, stand, sleep and feed with comfort and should also be able to see its surroundings to boost his/her security. Remember to stick or chain an identification mark of your pet on the carrier as well as your name and contacts for any eventuality.

Pet packing list

I like addressing pets like my own babies; they’ll need to keep their usual navy blue blanket and their canoe-shaped feeding tray. It keeps their mind content and calm in the middle of strange surroundings. Spare a leash and collar with address tags, even consider a microchip; you do not want your baby straying off as you fill in your paperwork. That done, pack the usual grooming products and tools, favorite toys and treats. Always look out for pet-friendly hotels and destinations as you do your pre-trip search.

Properly declare your possessions

Unless you want to end up in Depp and Amber’s situation, list properly all pets and their accessories as they are. Do not try to circumvent laws or pull out smart firsts on the authorities; we can only have so many terrified terriers in lurk.

About Lilian Gaitho (117 Articles)
Lilian Gaitho is the Head of Public Relations, Jumia Travel Kenya. An avid contributor, and has undoubtedly profound prowess on travel - tech&tips and the hospitality industry matters. Travel.jumia.com is Africa's No.1 hotel booking website, allowing you to get the best prices for more than 25,000 hotels in Africa and more than 200,000 hotels around the world.