Pets and Vacation: Where do you even begin?
You just can’t leave on vacation in the spur of the moment: you’ve got 2 dogs, your son has an iguana, and your cousin had to give up his cat, so you took the cat in. It would be nice to be able to throw them in the garage and see who’s still there when you get home. No, that’s not possible. It’s a delicate situation, as one of the dogs is older and now needs extra care, so what are the options? All options require planning on your part.
Leaving your animals at the vet: you can make arrangements with your local veterinarian who would take special care of the older dog, especially if it needs medication and is on a special diet. But even this poses some questions:
> Does the older dog react in a negative way (sulking, crying, stubborn) when going to the vet?
> Does it suffer from anxiety when separated from the other dog?
> Do they both need to go to the vet together? If it makes the older dog feel better that might be the best idea.
>Is there space available at the vet’s when you will be gone? What are the charges?
Another option is a pet sitter. If you don’t currently have a pet sitter, look for a pet-sitting service in your area that offers feeding, grooming, walking, and caring services in your home for a daily or weekly fee. Getting a referral from friends for a reliable sitter is also a good idea. Some will also pick-up your mail, and water plants as well. Plan to meet with the sitter ahead of time to see if animals and sitter are compatible. Let them know all the idiosyncrasies of each pet, from habits, eating, exercising needs, likes and dislikes, and don’t forget any medical history or medications.
There are other house sitting services that will look after pets that will stay in your home and take care of all your animals plus the household needs for longer periods of time. You can find more information on websites such as: HousesittersAmerica.com, Rover.com, TrustedHousesitters.com that have vetted and background checked sitters. If your vacation is 2 or more weeks, this is a great option. You have someone around the entire time for both pets and the house won’t be vacant.
Sometimes, if you are lucky enough to have a good friend or neighbor that you trust, and they really like your pets, this could be an easy solution for shorter trips.
Oh, what about the Iguana, and the cat. Keeping them at the house and having a pet sitter come is the best idea. Iguana’s are not the easiest. They need the right environment, light and heat, and specific places to hide hide or bask. So leaving them where they are, and having a sitter come to feed it, is necessary. At the same time, the cat will get get fed, brushed and played with.
The pointis there are a lot of factors that need to be considered for each animal, just like any family member. So plan ahead and then your vacation will be a real vacation.