Traveling With Pets: A Thanksgiving Guide

So you’re heading back home to spend Thanksgiving with relatives. But, this being a family holiday, you don’t want to leave your fur babies behind! Maybe you’re taking a short drive, or perhaps you’re flying. How ever you’re getting to your destination of choice, Activ4Pets wants to provide the very best pet travel advice.

The Basics

Tags and Microchip
Super obvious, but super important. Tags (attached to your pet’s collar with your name, number, email address, etc) and a microchip help identify your your pet should they inexplicably go missing during the trip. It’s also a good idea to have recent, up-to-date photos of them too.
Plan Ahead, Pack Accordingly, Think Pet-Friendly
Depending on the length and nature of your journey, you’ll need to pack plenty of pet-friendly supplies (water, food, treats, toys, poop bags, etc), any necessary medications, and plan ahead for scheduled stops. Will you make a pit stop for lunch, or stay overnight at a hotel/motel/Holiday Inn? If so, they’ll have to be pet-friendly. It goes without saying that pets should never be left unattended in a vehicle, for any length of time.
Avoid using sedation and pack a first aid kit too. Just in case.
Visit Your Veterinarian Prior to Traveling
If you’re traveling to another state you’ll need up-to-date vaccinations (including a rabies jab and paperwork) plus a recent health certificate. Your veterinarian can assist with all of this plus you’ll get one final opportunity to check your pet’s overall health to ensure they’re fighting fit for the journey ahead. If they’re not up to traveling, your vet can give you frank advice so you can think of alternative plans (boarding, leaving them with family members or friends) prior to departure.

Road Trips

Exercise Restraint
Road trips can be extremely hazardous for your pets – what with the continual stopping, starting and swerving of your vehicle. Ensure your pets are properly restrained, to prevent any unnecessary injury. Activ4Pets recommends using a secure carrier placed on the back seat of your car, away from any airbags. It should be well ventilated with plenty of comfortable bedding to help your pet relax and enjoy the journey.
Wherever you’re heading it’s likely to be cold. Ensure your pets have enough blankets, towels and wet wipes (to clean up) for every eventuality. This is even more important if you’re traveling with puppies, kittens or any kind of older animal.


For anyone traveling by air, it’s best to get advice from your veterinarian prior to travel. It simply is not appropriate for some animals to fly (birds are generally ok by themselves!), so go get an expert’s opinion.
Assuming you’re traveling domestically (it is only a four-day weekend, after all), many pets can accompany you in the passenger cabin – providing they’re in good health, have all the necessary vaccinations and that you follow certain guidelines and precautions.
The Federal Aviation Administration’s website is a great source of information for owners who wish to take their pet via plane.

How Can Activ4Pets Help?

Sick of all the paperwork? Activ4Pets enables you to go completely paperless with a digital health resource that gives you access to EVERYTHING. We’re your ideal travel partner! You’ll have your vaccination records, allergies, medications, medical documents, x-rays, microchip information, photos and much more available 24/7, wherever you are in the world.
Membership starts at just $24 per year and you can get started right away by visiting our sign up page.
Activ4Pets wishes you and your pets a happy and healthy Thanksgiving. And, wherever you’re spending the long weekend, enjoy the trip with your pets – you’re going to have some great bonding moments ahead!

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