Traveling with Dogs

Sylvano Bitencourt - Wednesday, June 01, 2016

As Summer nears and the travel season begins it is time to think about travelling with our dogs and the added problems sometimes associated with those trips. Among the issues commonly seen are increased risks of parasites, regulatory requirements, motion sickness, anxiety associated with travel, and the risk of becoming lost.



Parasites are a concern, and some parts of the country have parasites not seen in other parts. For instance fleas are common in humid, low elevation, moderate temperature regions like the coastal regions, and less in the dry deserts or high mountain regions. Heartworm, a major health risk to dogs is spread by mosquitos and is common in the Midwest, South and Eastern US but is not seen in dogs confined to Washington, though is more common on the Oregon coast. Your veterinarian can help you prevent parasite problems if you will tell your vet of your travel plans prior to leaving.


Depending on where you go, you may need the rabies vaccination certificate to prove your dog is current on the rabies vaccination. Places that may ask to see a copy would include state and national parks, and travel to Canada. Be sure to check with your vet well ahead of time if you are planning a trip to another country as the requirements can take several weeks to fulfill.


Dogs with anxiety related to travel, or motion sickness can be helped with medication given ahead of time. Again, your vet can help with providing products that can successfully control these problems.


Finally, no dog should travel without good identification. Nametags with your phone number (make sure it is current), and the pet’s name attached to the collar are essential. In addition I advise a microchip which can’t be lost or misplaced. However, the chip is only as good as the owner’s information associated with the chip, so make sure it has been registered and the contact information is current.


Happy travels.


Should you have any question about this article, you can contact Dr. Hunter at 509-327-9354.

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