Don't have the budget to buy crochet patterns? Browse my huge collection of free patterns here, with projects ranging from amigurumi to clothing, home decor, and more! ♡
    Read more
    Looking for inspiration for your next project? Get lots of ideas and patterns for a variety of themes, including holidays, craft fairs, keychains, no-sew amigurumis, and more! ♡
    Learn more
    Check out my free printables! There are printables to go along with crocheted items, printables for little ones, and printables for the home! ♡
    Learn more
Hey there!
Welcome to the Sweet Softies blog! Join me in celebrating the sweet things in life, from motherhood and education, to crafts, fashion, home, and more!

If you'd like to learn more about me, just click this button below!
read more

Should You Take Your Dog on Vacation with You? 6 Questions to Ask

While it’s the norm for most people to leave their pets behind while traveling, over the years, it’s become more viable for pet parents to take their fur babies with them on vacation. Nowadays, many resorts, hotels, and dining establishments open their doors to pets. Knowing that, it may seem like a perfectly good decision to take your dog with you on your next trip.

But even with the rise of pet-friendly travel possibilities, is it the right thing to do to take your dog along? Doing so will entail more preparation than is typical for a normal trip, and you’ll be challenged to find food, lodging, and transportation that can keep your pooch happy and comfortable.

To avoid a stressful experience for you both, ask yourself these six questions to determine whether it’s right to bring your dog along for your next vacation:

1) Is the Destination Dog-Friendly?

You may already be dreaming of walking along a sandy beach with your dog, the salty breeze ruffling both your hair and your pup's fur. Or perhaps you're imagining hiking through a lush forest with your dog leading the way, their tail wagging in excitement. Before you can imagine further, however, you’ll have to know whether either of these vacation sites are dog-friendly and will welcome your pooch’s presence.

Thankfully, there are plenty of pet-friendly vacation spots out there, from national parks where your pup can channel their inner explorer to charming towns that will roll out the welcome mat for all kinds of travelers—even the furry ones. Just make sure to research pet policies for hotels, find out whether typical public transportation options accept dogs, and locate pet amenities like nearby veterinary clinics.

On top of taking your dog to a dog-friendly vacation spot, be prepared to abide by each location’s rules and etiquette for pet care and oversight. For example, if a local park requires your dog to be leashed at all times, make sure you pack your best leash and martingale collars with you and use them to safely walk your dog.

2) Is Your Dog Up for the Adventure?

Dogs have their own preferences and “paw-sonalities,” just like humans do. That makes it easier for some types to take to traveling more easily than others. Some dogs, on the other hand, may not have as much fun away from home as you will because of their old age, illness, or generally anxious disposition. So before pushing through with your plans, take a moment to evaluate whether your pooch is actually up for the adventure.

Further questions you can ask yourself about your dog’s readiness to vacation with you are the following:

  • Is your pup a sprightly youngster ready to conquer new trails, or a seasoned senior who would still prefer to take leisurely strolls in their home neighborhood?
  • Are they trained and well-behaved even in unfamiliar places, or is their temperament somewhat difficult when they’re away from their home base?
  • Are they healthy and mobile? If not, is there a way to tailor your vacation plans to meet your furry friend’s needs?

3) Are There Proper Accommodations for Your Furry Pal?

Whether they’ll be around you the whole time or resting somewhere while you do vacation-friendly activities, you’ll also need to make sure that you can find proper accommodations for your pooch. Luckily, depending on where you’re going, you may be able to find a lot of comfortable options outside the usual hotels and resorts.

You can rent a pet-friendly cabin in the woods, for example, or an airy beachside cottage. If you’re the outdoorsy type and you think your dog is up to it, you can even pitch a tent at a campground instead. The important thing is to make sure there’s a roof over both of your heads, and that you’re clear with the establishment that your pet is allowed to stay there.

4) Are All of Your Dog’s Essentials Ready?

Passport? Check. Sunscreen? Check. Leash, treats, food, and toys for your four-legged travel buddy? Double-check! If you’re going on vacation, you’ll need to pack a travel kit for your dog, too.

As far as your dog is concerned, don’t forget that their essentials also include their collar, name plate, and documents attesting to their updated vaccinations.

5) Can You Ensure Your Dog's Safety and Health?

Your dog's health and safety are of utmost importance, and you should be able to attend to all of their health needs the whole time you’re on vacation. Schedule a visit to the vet before departure to make sure your pup is in great shape, and if they’re ruled as fit to travel, pack a first aid kit tailored to your canine’s needs. In addition, familiarize yourself with local veterinarians and emergency services at your destination so that you'll be adequately prepared for any unexpected situations.

6) Will Your Dog Love the Activities You’ve Planned?

You may be looking forward to social activities like bar-hopping or action-packed activities like surfing while you’re on vacation. But will your dog have activities to look forward to as well? Or do you see them growing bored and impatient with your itinerary?

If you do decide to bring your dog along, consider their preferences as well when planning your activities. You’ll want them to be comfortable and at ease instead of nervous and anxious to go home right away.

At the end of the day, the decision to bring your dog on vacation is not just about logistics. It’s about making sure that you can provide your dog with the care and attention they need while still being able to unwind and have fun together on the trip.

Your answers to the questions above should give you some clarity about whether it’ll be a good decision to bring your dog along. You may need to change your vacation plans to be more dog-friendly, or to simply leave your dog in the care of a trusted pet-sitter or family member while you’re away. As a rule of thumb, only take your dog along if you can guarantee a vacation experience where they’ll be wagging their tail the whole time.