We all know pets are part of the family, and when summer vacation comes along, that might mean taking them along for the ride. But there is some preparation involved with bringing Fido on the trip. 

Here are some tips to keep your pet safe and comfortable while traveling. 

Pack a recent photo of your pet as well as any important veterinarian records in case they become lost or sick while you're away from home. Be sure that your pet's tags and identification are up to date, and consider having them microchipped if they aren't already.  Pack a toy or two for your pet to play with in the backseat or in their carrier. The familiar smells can keep them comfortable and occupied.  Give your pet a lighter meal before traveling to prevent an upset stomach and be sure to give them water at regular intervals. If your pet gets motion sickness, talk to your veterinarian about options.  Never leave your pet alone in a parked vehicle. Summer temperatures can get deadly fast.  If you’re driving with your pet, make sure your pet’s carrier is safe and secureIf your dog is too big for a carrier, consider a car harness to keep your dog and yourself safe. You can find multifunctional harnesses with seatbelt attachments to keep your dog in the back while you drive.  As tempting as it might be for you and your pet, don't let them hang out of the car window. Your pet could inhale or be injured by debris. Plus, you don't want any temptation to jump out of the car. Keep the window down only a few inches if you think they'd enjoy a nice breeze. If you’re flying with your pet, try to book direct flights and only use approved and prepared carriers and crates. Make sure you have a health certificate from your veterinarian. Check breed restrictions with your airline. Most airlines won't allow "snub-nose" dogs like pugs and bulldogs due to breathing difficulties.  Make sure to book a pet-friendly hotel, and double check the hotel's weight and size policy. When in doubt, call ahead. A pet-friendly Airbnb is also a great option, especially if it has a backyard for your pup to stretch his legs.  If you're visiting lots of people, let them know beforehand if your pet can be a little nervous. They just got out of a long car ride — you might want to keep an eye on them to make sure they aren't overstimulated. 

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