By Laurie Darroch
Whether you are moving to another country for work, school, a change of pace, or to retire, you will of course want to bring your beloved canine companion with you. Although your faithful family member will go wherever you lead, you do need to be prepared and consider their special requirements when making such a big change.
Vets and Emergencies
Vets are not always easily found in all places, and they may be long distance vets who only come into town on specific dates. For instance, spaying and neutering clinics may only be available on certain dates when the vet makes special trips to provide that service for the area.
Before you make the leap and move to a new country, be sure to research what sort of facilities are available. You will also need to know what type of emergency facility is available for pets.
It is a good idea to have all of the information, including the vet’s name and location, written down before you move. If there are groups of expats living in the area where you are moving, see if you can contact them online or via phone to get firsthand, up-to-date information. Websites sometimes do not get updated frequently and may be out of date. Firsthand information from those in the know is best.
By Julia Williams
If you’re a dog lover and your summer travels take you to Missouri, Texas, Tennessee or Alaska, you might want to check out the following museums dedicated to our canine companions. These woof-worthy dog museums feature original art, books, videos, historical information, dog collectibles, dog toys and a whole lot more.
American Kennel Club Museum of the Dog
The AKC’s Museum of the Dog claims to be “Home to the world’s finest collection of art devoted to the dog.” Now, I have not traveled the world in search of dog art nor have I been to this museum in person. However, if what they showcase on their website is indicative of the quality of dog art found in the museum, I’d have to agree. It looks doggone impressive!
Located in St. Louis, Missouri, the Museum of the Dog displays more than 700 original paintings, drawings, prints, sculptures, bronzes and porcelain figurines as well as decorative art depicting man’s best friend through the ages. The All-Star Dogs Hall of Fame features colorful wall murals painted by the American artist Stephen Hubbell, and story boards created by the international design firm Hellmuth Obata Kassabaum. Also on permanent display is a Dogs of War exhibit with historical photographs, limited edition prints and memorabilia on the famous WWII Yorkshire Terrier mascot named Smoky.
By Laurie Darroch
If you’re taking your dog with you on a long car trip, it’s important to take their needs into consideration. You want the trip to be as comfortable and calm as possible for both of you.
Movement and Restraint
Although it isn’t required in most places, it’s a good idea to have some form of restraint to keep your dog from running all over in the car, distracting you from your driving. You may opt for a crate, but if the drive is very long, give your dog an opportunity to take breaks.
Instead of a crate, you can use a harness designed for a dog that attaches to the seat belt. This gives your dog more ability to move around but not get loose, and it keeps them safer. They come in different sizes, so remember to upgrade to the correct size if your dog is still growing.
Another option is to buy a divider or gate that keeps the dog out of the front seat area and only allows the dog to move freely behind the divider, the way a taxi driver or chauffeur keeps passengers in the back seat.
By Laurie Darroch
Seat belts are not usually required for a dog to ride in a car in most areas. However, you do need to check, as some areas do have regulations. Even if it’s not mandatory where you live, there are good reasons for your dog to wear a seat belt while traveling in your car, and it’s a responsible choice for a human companion to make for their loved dog.
In case of a sudden stop or accident, your dog will not be thrown off the seat into another passenger, the driver or against an object such as the window or seat. Dogs do not have the same gripping ability to stay in the seat as a human does. Being restrained by a seat belt designed specifically for a dog will protect them as well as you.
By Lisa Mason
Traveling with your dog is different from traveling with cats. If you have an upcoming trip and you want to take your dog along for the ride, there are a few things you should know first and that you should prepare for. Let’s explore this topic for a bit to help you prepare.
Should You Bring Him or Leave Him?
One of the first questions to ask yourself when traveling with your dog is if you should even bring him along or not. To find your answer, consider where you are going and for how long, what method of travel you will take, if your dog has traveled before and if he likes traveling.
If you consider leaving him instead, how will he be cared for in your absence? Do you have a dog sitter you can trust or will you be using a kennel service? Have you researched the kennel and the conditions your dog will be in?
If you plan on taking your dog, will your destination be dog friendly? If your dog has traveled before, how did he react? Are you prepared to handle any behavior issues that may arise while traveling to unfamiliar territory with your dog?
Driving with Your Dog
If you and your dog both like traveling by car, a road trip can be an excellent way to spend time together. Try to plan your route ahead of time with dog-friendly stops along the way (hotels that allow pets, dog parks, dog-friendly rest stops, etc.) and be sure to pack the car with your dog’s safety and comfort in mind as well.
By Ara Gureghian
The floor was hard this morning as Spirit romped around, his usual self being the Daily Clown. That is what Pits do. It’s vibrations through my own steps I felt, and no, it was not “parquet,” it was frozen dirt from this ongoing winter. Crunch… crunch. Frozen mud. Unfamiliar spaces for me, it takes me at least 24 hours to get the lay of the land, this mental “I am here” feeling while the tent is pitched near a fire ring. It takes Spirit seemingly only a few minutes to be “at Home.” He lives in the moment, definitely more accomplished than myself.
We have been on the road full time camping for a bit over 6 years now. Time has flown by, and every day is more exciting than the previous one. Our Home has become more mental than anything else. Of course Spirit has his familiar spaces where he feels more comfy than others, such as in his sidecar and his spot in the tent. That is it.
Hard to explain. Home is our togetherness. 365/24/7. Not a moment less. It is the two of us making one. Words too well understood, eye glances saying it all, imperceptible gestures leading the ways to our own dance through this Life of ours together.
There is no beginning and no end in his mind, and what a wonderful way to live as I have taken many lessons from him. Some laugh at that notion. We are after all humans, they are animals. How can that be? It is. Spirit is as I call him also my Pawsome Human and I don’t “own him.” We cohabitate. There is never a complaint toward the lack of walls, a fence maybe, a gate, a room dark at night where the stars would not glow. We are in the Wild at most moments but far from being wild. I have never trained him as my previous two Buddies in my Lifetime while I am approaching myself 65. It is more of a “mutual understanding” so much based on Love and respect, and much natural communication.