With some restrictions still in place for overseas travel 51% of dog owners plan to take their pet on a staycation this year.
With a quarter of UK dog owners taking on their new pet during the pandemic, Blue Cross is offering advice to owners who may be taking their dog away from home for the first time. For many pets they may find themselves for the first time in a totally different environment. They may have never seen the sea before or had much experience around livestock. The charity recommends owners plan ahead to ensure everyone enjoys a holiday that is happy, not a horror.
Kerry Taylor, Education Manager at Blue Cross said: “There are a few key things to consider before you go, during the journey and when you arrive. For example, find out where the nearest vet is located and check our first aid advice, just in case. Make sure your dog is microchipped, which they should be by law, and your mobile phone number is on their dog tag. Pack everything your dog will need and to make sure they are comfortable being in a strange place, especially if it’s their first time.”
Two thirds of dog owners confess they are nervous about taking their dog on holiday, with 40% of owners saying they fear their dog might get stolen or go missing. However, shockingly over a third of owners say they don’t have a contact number on their dog’s tag.
A third of owners also worry their pet will overheat in the sun yet over a quarter think it is ok to leave the dog in the car with the windows open when making a quick stop.
Kerry continued: “New dog owners in particular need to plan ahead and do some research before setting off. Never leave your dog alone in a car, on hot days, even just for a couple of minutes, as it can be extremely dangerous and even deadly. Make sure you take regular water and wee stops if it’s a long drive and get them used to public transport before setting off on a long train journey to make sure they will cope.”
Blue Cross #petholiday checklist:
- Make sure your mobile number is on their dog tag
- Check contact details of nearest vet and pack a doggy first aid kit – just in case
- Pack their blanket or bed
- Always have clean water for the journey and while away
- Pack their favourite toys in case of rainy days
- Pack any medicines they need
- Make sure flea and worm treatment is up to date
- Pack their food, treats and a chew to help them relax
- If they might take a dip in the sea, or other water, take a towel and brush
Despite half of the owners claiming their dog always comes back when called Blue Cross animal behaviourist urge caution before letting dogs off the lead while on holiday as some dogs may behave differently somewhere they are unfamiliar with compared to their daily visit to the local park. It is also vital for dogs to be kept on a short lead when around livestock and wildlife and keep on a lead if there is any doubt whatsoever that they might run off.
For more staycation with pets advice visit www.bluecross.org.uk/petholiday.