Whether you’re planning a trip abroad for a holiday or moving permanently, this is a very exciting time. Depending on where you are going, your trip may involve plenty of sunshine, too.
What of your four-legged comrades, though? They won’t be giving the trip any thought. On the other hand, you will be doing a lot of planning and checking, no doubt leading to you forgetting a few things.
One of the main things to consider is the climate. How will your pet adjust to your new surroundings and what can you do to help?
Luckily, there are a few simple things you can do for your pet can enjoy your trip abroad as much as you.
Whether you are looking into pet travel to Europe or anywhere else in the world, read on to see how best to help your furry friend get acclimatised whilst you are abroad.
One thing to note: if you are moving permanently, always get yourself registered with a vet first!
How can I help my pet acclimatise to a colder climate?
Many of our pets are quite furry creatures, so they might always look warm, but they still feed the cold just as much as we do.
If you take your pet out for a few walks a day, it would be best to keep the walks short to start with, gradually increasing the duration. Going for a long walk too quickly will not only tire your pet out, but it could also cause injury, especially if your new climate is significantly colder than your native one.
You should also be aware that overexposure to cold weather could make your pet ill. Just like us, a cold can hit at any time. Over time, increase the length of the walks, but be sure to note if your pet appears particularly short of breath or unwell, and contact a vet as soon as possible.
Dress your pet appropriately
You may already have a dog coat at the ready for colder days – just be aware of what its prime function is. A coat that keeps them sufficiently warm back home may not suffice in your new surroundings. Shop around and find something suitable for the environment. As we mentioned above, an illness could hit your pet if they are not kept warm enough.
Incorporate indoor play
With the time outside reduced as your pet gets used to the new climate, you may need to factor in more exercise indoors. Look for appropriate, stimulating toys for your pet to enjoy. Indoor play is great for helping raise their temperature, too, so indoor play can be especially helpful if your pet is feeling the cold.
It will also stave off the boredom that reduced time outside may start to bring!
Keeping your pet dry
It can be difficult to spot when your pet is only a little damp from a light rain. If you encounter any kind of wet weather, make sure you dry your pet off as soon as you return home. Snow is especially enticing to a dog if it has never experienced it before. After your time outside, dry them off and place their bed near a heat source. Colds can sometimes take a while to show and whilst your pet may appear well, an illness could be working through its immune system.
Create a suitable place to sleep
Before venturing abroad, your pet might be accustomed to sleeping at the end of your bed, for instance. In your new and possibly colder surroundings, ensure your pet has a warm bed, a blanket and perhaps even a pillow. Not only will this enable a great night’s sleep, but your pet will also be warm and comfortable.
If you are moving somewhere a little warmer, there are some other things to consider, too.
How can I help my pet acclimatise to a warmer climate?
A warmer climate is quite often why we go abroad. When there is an opportunity to escape from a grey sky and cold weather, we tend to take it.
Keep your pet hydrated
This may sound obvious, but keeping your pet topped up with liquid refreshment is vitally important. No doubt you will all be enjoying the sun, and once you return from a walk, your pet will want a drink to help them cool down. Providing them with clean, cool water all day will help keep them suitably hydrated, also helping to prevent heatstroke and other ailments brought on by the heat.
You could also provide them with a cooling shower every now and then in the garden!
Shorter walks, later in the day
Depending on where you are, the temperature could reach uncomfortable levels for both you and your pet. To give you both the best opportunity of staying cool and safe, enjoy evening walks with cooler temperatures and lower humidity. Then, as you spend longer in the area, gradually schedule your walks earlier in the day.
You may not be out walking them, but if your pet is out in the garden or is in a generally hot area, you can do one of two things. Either provide a shady haven for them to relax in, or simply limit the amount of time outside. Animals can get sunburnt, too, so you it is worth investing in an animal-safe sunscreen.
Protect from pests
The hot weather is prime time for bugs. Not only is it their opportune window for breeding, but they will appear just about anywhere. To stop these critters becoming a nuisance to your home and your pet, there are a few things you can do:
- Change your pet’s water regularly – bugs love to pollute a drinking supply
- Apply an animal-safe insect repellent to your pet
- Keep your house clean and well- maintained. Cracks and holes can quickly become home to 8-legged visitors and cockroaches
- Time your walks. Dusk and dawn are prominent times for insects to be out and about
Brush their coat
Certain animals have very thick coats, and by brushing them regularly, you help them shed their winter coat faster. They can then enjoy the sun without wearing an additional fur coat, also reducing the risk of heatstroke.
If you are heading abroad with your pet, it is critical to ensure they are well looked after. PBS Pet Travel are market leading experts in the transportation of animals around the world. Contact us today to find out more, or simply get in touch for a free quote. We can help with all paperwork needed for pet travel, as well as organising transport for your pets via land or air.