Your Pet and Travel: Leaving Your Dog at Your Apartment

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Your Pet and Travel: Leaving Your Dog at Your Apartment

Staff Writer · Oct 19, 2010

A pet and travel don’t always go together; if you’re unable (or unwilling) to take your dog along with you on your next trip, you’ll have to make arrangements so that she’s well taken care of. However, dog kennels can be costly as well as stressful for your dog. Instead, consider leaving your dog at your apartment or with a friend.

What’s Easier: Leaving Your Dog at Home or with Friends

If you’re going to be enlisting the help of a family member of friend to watch your dog when your trip can’t accommodate pet travel, it seems like it’ll be much easier for your friend if you leave your dog at your friend’s house, so your friend won’t have to drive back and forth to your apartment and your dog will have more frequent company. However, while a friendly, laid back dog may not mind this arrangement, some dogs can become highly stressed when removed from their home environments. In addition, your friend may not be able to accommodate your dog at his or her house.

However, if your dog is easily lonely or needs supervision, you don’t want to leave her alone in your apartment for long periods of time, even if she will be stressed in a new environment. Determining the best arrangement depends largely on your dog’s temperament and your friend’s ability to accommodate you. Remember that having your friend house sit at your apartment while you’re gone and your can’t have your pet travel with you may be an option as well.

What to Tell Your Dogsitter

It’s safest for your dog and more convenient for your friend if you make sure your dogsitter is aware of several things before you head on your trip. You should have all instructions written down in case your friend can’t remember. On a list, include your dog’s vet’s contact number (for emergencies) and a list of all medications your dog takes as well as how often she needs them and how you’re able to encourage her to ingest them. You should also explain (but write down as well) any odd or negative behaviors your dog may exhibit and how best to stop them. You should also include a schedule of feeding and bathroom times throughout the day, as it’s important that even when you can’t have your pet travel with you, she keeps a regular routine.

What to Give Your Dogsitter

If you’re bringing your dog to your friend’s house or even if you’re having your friend come to your apartment, you should get together a kit of items for your dog’s care to make it easier for your friend. This kit should include:

  • The list of behaviors and routines
  • Enough dog food to last the duration of your trip
  • Food and water bowls
  • Your dog’s bed
  • Your dog’s favorite toys
  • Any medication your dog needs
  • Your dog’s leash
  • Your dog’s collar with ID
  • Some recent pictures of your dog (in case she gets lost and your friend needs to put out an ad)
  • A waste scoop kit

When pet travel is out of the question for you, plan ahead for your dog’s care while you’re away. Leaving a friend or family member in charge of your pet is one easy solution, but be sure to plan accordingly for your time away.

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