Your pets are part of your family, so leaving them behind while you go away can be difficult for the both of you. With worries about who will look after them in your absence or how they’ll stick to their daily routine, you’re bound to feel overwhelmed about it all, but it doesn’t have to be so upsetting. With some forward thinking, you can equip your pet with the right care it needs until you return.
Here, we’ll be sharing our top tips for preparing your pet before you take a trip away, so you can enjoy your time off without worrying about your furry friend back at home.
Reduce their anxiety
Pets are known for their loyalty and the close bonds they have with their owners, so it’ll be no surprise if your cat or dog suffers from separation anxiety. Fortunately, there are some ways you can calm their anxiety and leave them feeling more settled while you’re away.
Switch their usual collar for a calming one, like this Adaptil calming dog collar from Millbry Hill. These are great options for anxious dogs, as these accessories mimic pheromones that a mother dog releases to reassure her puppies. Even in the absence of their mother, dogs will pick up on these throughout their lives no matter what age they are. You can also buy anti-anxiety diffusers and sprays which use similar formulas to help your pets to stay comfortable while you’re not there.
Find a trusted pet sitter
One of the most stressful things about leaving your pets behind is finding somebody who can look after them adequately. Even if you have family who live close by, people have their own commitments and it can be nerve-wracking leaving your furry friends in the hands of anybody who doesn’t know them as well as you do. But, getting them well acquainted with your sitter before you leave for your holiday will help a lot.
If possible, get their pet sitter to spend a good chunk of the day watching how you care for your pet. For example, getting them to join you out on the dog walk will familiarise them with the usual route you take, how long you walk for and what time you go.
If you don’t have family or friends who can care for your pet, there are options to hire a sitter that can check in with your pet or let them home board with them. Pet sitting sites like Animal Aunts is a great way of ensuring your pets are well looked after by fellow animal-lovers. These people can make sure your animals are following their normal daily schedule, receiving any medication they have and getting some well-needed love and attention.
Prepare them for your absence
No matter how skilled or qualified they are, nobody knows your pet like you do. So, it’s important to create a list of things they do daily, including what time and how long for. For example, noting their feed times or when they take medication is a good idea when you’ll be leaving them with somebody else.
When you know you’re going to be away for a while, it’ll be a good idea to get them a bit more accustomed to not seeing you as much. Although it can be difficult, leaving them home alone for a bit longer each day will mean they’re prepared to spend more of their day without you.
Choose a reputable cattery or kennel
You may prefer to send your pets to a cattery or kennel where they can board for the period of time you’re away for. Owned and staffed by trained professionals, you can guarantee your animals will get substantial care and attention, as well as some company from fellow boarders.
As these are very popular options, you’ll need to book your pets well in advance into these animal boarding places to avoid disappointment and any additional stress. Plus, as these places provide around-the-clock care, they don’t often come cheap and the price you pay may depend on the size and breed of your animal. Some kennels or catteries will even have minimum stay times, so even if you’re only away for 6 days, you may well have to pay for a week’s worth of care, so make sure to ask this when expressing interest in a place.
Be sure to physically go and scope out the accommodation before sending your pet there to see if you can imagine them being happy there, and if you would be satisfied leaving them there. And, when the time comes to drop them off, equip them with some home comforts like blankets and toys so they feel more settled.
Leaving your pet while you go away can be a stressful experience for the both of you. But, by following our suggested tips, you’ll be on the right track to keeping them happy and healthy in your absence.