Good tips for going on holiday with a dog

photo: Louise Sørensen @junior_the_copenhagen_lab

The sun is starting to shine, the weather is getting warmer, the days are getting longer and the holiday urge is rising in all of us – including your dog. For most dogs, it can be healthy for a little change of air, where they get out and see different forests and beaches than they are used to, so why not take your dog on holiday?

Yes, because it can often be a bit difficult to make it all fit together. All dogs are not equally comfortable with transport or new places, so you should take some precautions so that it can be a good holiday for both you and your dog.
In this blog post, we guide you to the easiest way to take your dog on holiday - and give you good tips and tricks if you are going on a car holiday or in a holiday home with a dog, for example.

Consider what it will take to bring a dog on holiday

Before you start making the big plans, it might be a good idea to find out what is required of you when you take your dog on holiday. It is not always easy to take the dog with you when you go on a trip - even if the dog is the whole family's best friend, and a summer without it would feel empty.

Before you plan your trip, think about where you or your family are going. Make sure the holiday is realistic. Concerts, noisy events and large gatherings are rarely what make a dog wag its tail.

Instead, consider going on holiday somewhere with good nature and quiet surroundings, where you and the family can choose the large gatherings from or to. When you go on holiday with your dog, it is important to still maintain a fixed routine as far as possible. This means that the dog still needs its daily walks when you are on holiday together.

In a cottage with a dog

If you want to bring the dog to the holiday home, you must find an area of ​​the holiday home where you are welcome to have a dog and where there is room for the dog to run around and play – maybe even meet other dogs. Perhaps you can find a holiday home area near a dog forest or a large beach, where there is plenty of opportunity to activate the dog. In the vast majority of places, however, it is permitted to bring your dog, provided it is on a leash.

Two bernese mountain dogs wearing drysuits greet

photo: Elena Belevantseva

When you are looking for a holiday home where it is possible to bring your dog, you can find many services online that have collected all holiday home locations throughout Denmark where the dog is also guaranteed a place.

However, always make sure to keep an eye out for signage in the area, so you are on the safe side – and keep your dog on a lead unless otherwise indicated.

If your dog is a real water dog, it is important that you dry it properly so that the dog avoids eczema. You can do this, for example, with a drying blanket that dries the dog's fur quickly and ensures that an overheated dog is cooled down.

On self-drive holiday with dog

When you are going on a self-drive holiday with a dog, the dog must be transported in a transport box or dog crate, as it is far less stressful for the dog. A stressed dog in a car in the middle of the German highway is a huge no-go. Therefore, it is also important that she is comfortable with the transport box and feels calm in the back of the car. One way you can make the trip comfortable for the dog is with the FlexDog mat , which is both soft and comfortable. It is designed with a shock-absorbing layer, so dogs lie quietly and comfortably during the entire drive. The mat is also good for drying wet and muddy dog ​​paws.

When you are on a car holiday with your dog, you must also plan breaks into the trip where both you and the dog can stretch their legs. During the breaks, make sure you give the dog food or treats and water. Dogs here tend to get motion sickness, and it is therefore not a good idea to feed them while driving or give them a big lunch just before you leave.

Two dogs wearing drysuits sitting in a transport cage in the back of a car

photo: Emma Bearman @gundogtales

Make good transport preparations so that the dog feels safe

If you are going to travel a long way by car or if you are considering a car holiday with a dog, it is important that you make good transport preparations that get the dog used to driving in a car and sitting in a cage.

When you initially have to teach your dog that it's cool to sit in a carrier in the back of the car, you have to let it take the time it takes. Let the dog himself discover the cage, and let the dog himself enter the cage at his own pace. It can take time, so be patient and buy a transport cage well in advance of your trip.

When the dog has got used to the transport cage, you can try taking short walks and see how the dog reacts. The more used to the cage the dog becomes, the safer and better it is for the dog to take on car holidays or travel long distances.

During a long journey, you must also make sure to make many stops so that the dog can get out and get exercise and be active. Make sure to maintain a routine even when you're on vacation.

Flight with dog

If you travel by plane, you must also ensure that your dog is safe during the entire journey. There are two options when traveling by air: accompanied or unaccompanied.

If the dog is traveling with a companion, the dog must be transported in an approved transport cage that must weigh a total of 10 kilos. If you have a small dog, it is also possible that it can be transported in a bag.

Without a companion, your dog will not sit with you on the plane, and can therefore be a difficult decision if, for example, your dog is not used to being alone for long periods of time. Here, your dog will lie safely in a heated hold, and will be looked after before and after landing. If you are traveling outside the EU, the dog will also be checked by a vet after landing.

These rules differ from airline to airline, and it is therefore important that you check which prawns your airline has for air travel with dogs.

During the journey, it is a good idea to have snacks and water for the dog, but as with car journeys, it is not a smart decision to give the dog a large meal before departure.

Be aware of damage and insects in the summer

Spaniel in a dry suit out in a field in summer

photo: Amanda Madsen @doubletroubledk

When you go on holiday in Denmark with a dog, you must be aware of injuries, especially if you travel around Denmark in the summer. If you and your dog spend a lot of time in different natural areas, perhaps in connection with camping or holidays in a holiday home, there are animals that you should be on the lookout for, among other things. We have listed the most important injuries that you should watch out for:

  • Bee and wasp stings: a small sting can, as in humans, cause an allergic reaction, and you must be aware of this.
  • Heat stroke: If Denmark enjoys a hot summer, you must make sure that your dog gets plenty of water and stays in the shade.
  • Vipers: A bite from a viper can cause damage to both the heart, kidneys and liver. The snake often hides in tall grass, so avoid this and call a vet if your dog does get bitten
  • Moisture eczema: If your dog is a real water dog, you must be aware of moisture eczema, which can occur when the dog is not dried properly. You can, for example, use DryGlove drying gloves , so that the risk of moisture eczema is reduced.
  • Sunburn: A sunburn can happen to anyone – even to dogs. Therefore, make sure to protect it from the sun by keeping the dog in the shade, and applying sunscreen to places such as the muzzle, stomach and ears.
  • Ticks: Just as you should check yourself for ticks after a long walk in the woods, you should also check your dog. Preferably do it every time you've been out and about. One way your dog and you can avoid ticks is to keep the dog out of tall grass and damp areas where ticks thrive. An airy forest path or dirt roads are therefore more optimal. You can also prevent ticks using medicine, which you can find at the pharmacy. The medicine must be smeared on the dog's skin.

What should you remember to pack for your dog?

When you go on holiday with your dog, it is important that you pack the right things to help you have a problem-free holiday. That's why we've made a list of the most important things you need to remember so you don't pack blindly.

– Feed bowl and water bowl
– Feed and lots of treats
- Plenty of water in the car if you have to drive long distances
– A dog passport if you are traveling outside the country's borders
– Harness and collar
– A good bed or mattress
– The dog's favorite toy, blanket or teddy to create security

In other words, remember to pack food and treats that you know the dog loves. In addition, you must pack blankets, teddy bears and toys that remind it of home and security. A harness, collar, dog bed and dog passport must also be packed, these are essential things for your dog to thrive and be able to come on holiday.

One last thing you should remember is to get your dog vaccinated - especially if you are going on holiday abroad. At Dyrenes Beskytselse you can read more about which vaccines you can give your dog and why.

Take the dog into account when you are on holiday

Although you probably want to take your dog everywhere, our best advice is that you take the dog into consideration. You know your own dog best, and if you know that it would not feel safe in the cottage area with playing children, then it might be better to take the dog for a walk in the woods. If you know that your dog is uneasy about driving long trips, a car holiday with her is probably not the obvious choice.

In the end, it's about you taking your dog into account and taking the dog's needs into account. Then it will be a good holiday for all parties.

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