Page 28 - Senior Times South Central Michigan - July 2018 - 25-07
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Page 28
Senior Times - July 2018
Travel Safely
50 Sanderson Lane Coldwater, MI 49036
Award-Winning | 5-Star Rated
By: Sherii Sherban, Publisher
Before you choose to bring your beloved pets when you travel consider how much time you will actually be spending with them. Unless you’ll be able to commit a significant amount of time with them, they will probably be happier at home than tagging along on your trip. As a rule, cats are almost always better off in their own home. But if you have decided it’s best to bring your pet along, the safest and most comfortable way for pets to trav- el is inside a carrier or crate. Before you travel visit your vet to be sure all vaccinations are up to date, then buy a carrier, and start to get them used to it.
When traveling by car leave the front seat for humans. Pets should stay in the back seat. If an airbag deploys (even in a crate), it might injure your pet that travels in the front.
Crate pets when traveling in the car. The safest way for your dog to travel in the car is in a crate that has been anchored to the vehicle using a seatbelt or other secure means. Dog restraints or seat belts are useful for preventing your dog from roaming around the car and being a distraction to the driver, but they haven’t been reliably shown to protect dogs during a crash.
Most cats aren’t comfortable trav- eling in cars, so for their safety as well as yours, keep them in a carrier. It’s important to restrain these carriers in the car so that they don’t bounce around and hurt your cat. Do this by securing a seat belt around the front of the carrier.
Keep those heads inside! Dogs and cats should always be kept safely inside the car to prevent injury from particles of debris or made sick by having cold air forced into their lungs. Never trans- port a pet in the back of an open pickup truck.
Schedule plenty of rest stops. Stop frequently to allow your pet to exercise and eliminate. But never permit your pet to leave the car without a collar, ID tag, and leash.
Bring along a human buddy.
Whenever possible, share the driving and pet caretaking duties with a friend or family member. You’ll be able to get food or use the facilities at rest stops
knowing that someone you trust is keeping a close eye on your pets.
Don’t ever leave your pet alone in a car. A quick pit stop may feel like no time at all to you, but it’s too long to leave your pet in a car by himself. Threats exist from the theft of your family pet to the hazards of heat.
When it’s 72 degrees Fahrenheit outside, the temperature inside your car can heat up to 116 degrees within an hour. On an 85-degree day, even with the windows slightly open, the temperature inside your car can reach 102 degrees in just 10 minutes. If you’re held up for 30 minutes,
you may return to a car that’s 120 degrees inside and a pet who is suf- fering irreversible organ damage or death.
Traveling by airplane with pets.
Air travel can be a quick way to get your pet from one place to another, but you should know that every airline has different rules about transporting pets. Some allow small dogs to travel in the aircraft cabin as part of your carry-on luggage allowance, while others will only allow pets to travel in the cargo area, and fees can vary from nothing at all to more than $500.
Air travel is discouraged is par- ticularly dangerous for animals with “pushed in” faces (the medical term is “brachycephalic”), such as bulldogs, pugs, and Persian cats. Their short nasal passages leave them especially vulner- able to oxygen deprivation and heat stroke.
If you’ve decided on air travel then be sure to book early. And do not buy your ticket until you confirm that there is room for your pet. It is best to fly direct. When you arrive at your des- tination be sure to go for a long walk before checking in to your hotel.
Traveling by ship with your pet.
With the exception of assistance dogs, pets are welcome on only a few cruise lines – and usually on ocean cross- ings only. Some lines permit pets in private cabins, but most confine pets to kennels. Contact your cruise line
in advance to find out its policies and which of its ships have kennel facilities. If you must use the ship’s kennel, make sure it is protected from the elements and check on your pet frequently.
Traveling by train with your pet.
Amtrak currently doesn’t accept pets unless they are assistance dogs. Some smaller U.S. railroad companies may permit animals on board. Many trains in European countries allow pets. Generally, it’s the passengers’ responsi- bility to feed and exercise their pets at station stops.
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With Your Pet

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