Traveling With Pets

How to Make it Safe, Fun, and Comfortable

One day a few years ago, my son and I were on a road trip and traveling with pets. We were driving to a job I’d gotten out of state. We were relocating and had packed all of our belongings in a small trailer attached to my little economy car. The car was teeming with our pets.

I remember looking into my rearview mirror and seeing Zilla the Green Iguana crawling over the mounds of blankets, clothes and snacks, on her way towards my shoulder, whilst I was driving down the freeway.

Her green wedge shaped head loomed larger and larger in the rearview mirror as I prayed that she would not decide to jump on my head and hang her body down over my face like the creature in alien, impeding my vision while we barreled down the freeway.

Pets are good for kids.

I love animals, and I believe pets are good for kids. They learn responsibility and empathy, and have extra little buddies when there are no other kids around.

So, over the years we have had an impressive assortment of animals including an African Millipede, hermit crabs, frogs, fish, toads, rats, a snake, an iguana, and one dog.

I can usually get a trusted family member to help out when we go on road trips, but not always. Still, not only do we manage to keep our furry family members safe and comfortable, but we also enjoy our trips and even enjoy traveling with pets.

Even so, traveling with pets is not always the best option. You usually must find a motel or campground that accepts pets. Then, you must make sure they are safe in your vehicle while you are traveling. You may not be able to leave them in the car if it is anything but cold outside for fear they will get too hot. If you are traveling with a reptile like an iguana, you must worry about it getting too cold.

If you take your pets to a motel you must be sure they don’t bark too much or escape their enclosure and crawl into a wall vent to be lost forever. If you can leave them at a pet friendly motel while sightseeing, you must be extra careful to make sure they are secure.

Your sightseeing options may be greatly limited by an inclusion of pets on your trip. If you have a trusted family member, friend, or pet sitter to watch them, it may be the most comfortable for your pet, as well as for your family to enjoy your trip, if they stay at home.

They're part of the family!

Still, there are a lot of good reasons to travel with your pets. One good reason is because you have to because you are moving. We have made a number of long distance moves and traveled with our dog, iguana, and pets rats all packed into our small vehicle.

Another reason you may need to take your animals with you is simply because they are members of the family and you don’t want to leave them behind. I know our Australia Cattle Dog would be permanently attached to our hips if he had it his way. And, we feel more like he is a member of the family then just a pet!

I will share with you how we have traveled with our rats, iguana, and dog successfully. If you have some other kind of critter, you’re on your own!

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