For most of us dogs are a much-loved member of the family, so when we’re taking our ‘family’ holiday, how often have we wished they could just come with us? Fortunately, holidaying with dogs has become much easier.
Many places across Australia now recognise that we want our dogs to be able to join us on our getaway, so if you’ve booked yourself some pet friendly accommodation, here’s a few general tips to help make holidaying with dogs a safe and stress free experience for everyone!
Settling your dog in
If you are renting a home for the holidays, make sure you show your dog where the doggy door is if there is one, or take them outside regularly and show them their new toileting area.
Make sure you check with the owner if there are any restrictions with dogs being on beds or couches, and take a spare blanket along to help keep them clean.
Dogs must not be allowed to create a nuisance problem e.g. constant barking so if you do leave them on their own in the new environment let them get settled in before going out and leave them with a bone or an Aussie Dog Tucker Ball or other slow release treat toy to help keep them occupied.
Some dogs respond well to the radio being left on, though this is not guaranteed. As their hearing is so much sharper than ours, the radio should be on low and set to a soothing music station. This may also help mute out other sounds outside that could set off barking.
Take along your dog’s bowls, poop bags, leads, beds and favourite toys, all of their usual comforts so it’s just like their home away from home.
Out and about
Dogs must be leashed in public places (as required by legislation or local laws).
Know the local off lead parks and beaches. The accommodation owner may be able to provide some tips, or most local councils also publish this and any beach seasonal restrictions on their website.
Make sure you pick up after they have done their business. It’s not only respecting others, but may save you a hefty fine as well if a ranger is lurking nearby.
Search online to see if there are any dog-friendly cafes and other dining places in the areas you are visiting, takeyourpet.com.au is a good place to start!
Make sure your accommodation has a fully fenced yard, and pools and spas are secured by a fence.
Know where a vet or emergency pet hospital is located nearby in case of emergency.
Always ensure your dog is wearing a name-tag with your phone number on it, so if they are left alone and escape, someone can get in touch immediately.
Holidaying with dogs is a great way to spend more time as a ‘family’ and your dog will love you even more for it!
About the Author: Lara Shannon is co-Host of Pooches at Play and has completed a Certificate III in Dog Behaviour & Training with the National Dog Trainers Federation. Lara also runs her own dog walking, dog minding and dog training business in Melbourne’s Bayside area.