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Traveling with pets make things like temperature control and insulation important considerations. This is especially true if your trip will last for a few weeks or longer. While dogs are the top choice for travel companions, some people are now choosing to have their cat, bird, snake, and even lizard travel with them. While it’s a good idea to avoid extended travel with any animal, some people are even living in an RV with them today.
What to do Before Traveling with Your Pet
Regardless of what type of pet you have, there are certain things you should do before you hit the road. Some of the most important things that you should never overlook include:
- Carry an international statement of health for your pet which includes their up-to-date rabies vaccination. When you’re crossing the border in either Mexico or Canada, you’ll need a U.S. Fish and Wildlife permit for your pet. These last for three years.
- Make sure you have fleas and ticks under control.
- Obtain both an ID tag and a microchip for your pet.
- Install smoke and carbon monoxide detectors in your RV.
- You should familiarize yourself with any breed restrictions that the campgrounds you plan to visit have in place. Some of these campgrounds will also require certificates of veterinary inspection.
- Just like you would never leave your pet in a car by themselves, you should never leave them in an RV unattended either. If you must leave them alone in your RV, make sure you have an automated climate control system in place.
Special Tips for Special Animals
Some of the best tips for traveling with pets will depend on what type of animal you’re traveling with.
If you plan to travel with dogs, make sure they’re well-behaved and cooperative, especially in social situations. When you arrive at a campground make sure they have enough time to explore their new surroundings so they aren’t anxious.
Cats also require some special care while you’re traveling. For instance, you must remember to bring kitty litter for their litter box and plenty of hiding spots from which they can get a good view of everything around them – both inside and outside. You should also confine your cat to a kennel or bathroom while driving so they don’t accidentally get under your feet.
Hitting the Road with Your Pet
As you’re loading up your vehicle or RV, make sure your pet is in a secure location. While the best place for them to stay is at a kennel or with some friends, keeping them in their crate or a room with a closed door is also an option. The goal here is to keep them from being stepped on, becoming stressed, or getting lost with all the chaos that’s going on around them. Before you leave you should also stop by the Tampa Bay Veterinary Service to have them checked by one of their vets. Having a healthy pet is the best way to make sure everyone enjoys the trip so schedule your appointment today.
Picture Credit: Andrew Pons
According to Wallet Hub’s list of 2019’s Most Pet Friendly Cities, Tampa, FL loves their dogs. This personal finance website took the time to create a list of the 100 largest cities based on a set of 24 key metrics they devised. Within this list Tampa ranked third in terms of pet friendliness while St. Petersburg, FL ranked thirty-sixth. The only two areas that topped Tampa in this metric were Scottsdale, AZ (coming in first place) and Orlando, FL (coming in first place).
Why This Study was Conducted
This study was conducted in advance of National Homeless Animals Day, which was held on August 17. It understood that pet friendliness in America is rampant with over 85 million homes owning pets and spending about $75 billion per year on them. Based on this information, Wallet Hub wanted to learn where these animals enjoyed the highest quality of life without spending a whole lot of money to do so. As such, Wallet Hub looked at things like walkability, how much it cost to visit pat-related businesses, and what pet care providers were charging.
What This Study Discovered
Wallet Hub’s discoveries in terms of pet friendliness are interesting, even if you’re not a pet owner. They discovered that:
- Stockton, CA has the lowest per visit cost for vets ($37.08) while Plano, TX charges twice the amount ($84.24).
- Newark, NJ has the fewest vets per square foot of population (0.0038) while Miami, FL has 88.9 times the number (0.3380).
- St. Paul, MN has the lowest monthly fee for dog insurance premiums ($34.84) while San Francisco, CA charges 2.5 times more ($88.76).
- Newark, NJ has the fewest pet businesses per square foot of population (0.0395) while San Francisco, CA has 21.4 times as man (0.8445).
Where Tampa Bay, FL Ranks
Tampa Bay is known for its pet friendliness, beating out St. Petersburg, FL when it comes to the cost of owning a pet (e.g. vet care, dog insurance premiums). Here Tampa ranked tenth while St. Petersburg ranked forty-sixth. Tampa also ranked higher when it came to having things like more dogs per capita, dog-friendly trails, and dog shows.
This has surprised some people because St. Petersburg won the 2019 Better Cities for Pets award for its pet friendliness. They also received a $30,000 grant from the U.S. Conference of Mayors based on this merit. Nevertheless, it still ranks significantly lower than bot Tampa and Orlando. Wallet Hub says that this lower ranking is primarily due to St. Petersburg’s lower pet health and wellness score – something that took into account the number of vets, pet caretakers, trainers, businesses, daycare, boarding, and meetup groups, as well as the number of dog-friendly restaurants, hotels, and shops. In this regard, Tampa ranked 17 while St. Petersburg came in fifty-sixth place.
As a pet owner you should know that you’re in good hands living in Tampa if your fur baby ever needs to see a vet. Simply reach out to the Tampa Bay Veterinary Specialists and Emergency Care Center and you’ll receive top notch care.
Picture Credit: Alvin Balemesa
Summertime sunshine can be a lot of fun, but it can also be quite dangerous for our pets. This is why you should always remember some important pets’ tips when you’re headed outside with them.
Never Leave Your Pet by Themselves in Your Vehicle
Although we’ve all been warned about it, there are still many pets who die every year because their owner has left them alone inside of a parked vehicle that then overheats. It only takes a short amount of time for your car to become really stifling, hot, and deadly. In fact, Dr. Ernie Ward discovered that it only takes 30 minutes for your car can easily reach a temperature of 117 degrees even if your windows are cracked.
Remain Vigilant Regarding Vet Care
Before the summer heat kicks in, you should make an appointment with your vet to get your pet a full checkup. This should include a heartworm test. You should also discuss a flea and tick protection plan with your vet. While these are issues that affect your pet throughout the year, your pet is spending more time outdoors in the summer so you need to watch them closer.
Don’t Walk Your Dog When it’s hot Outside
Take your dog for a walk in the morning before the sun comes up or at night after it goes down. Regardless, you should still watch for any issues that may arise including frantic panting and glassy eyes. When your pet exhibits either of these symptoms you should get them to a vet immediately. Additional pets’ tips to remember here is ensuring your pet has plenty of shade and water available to them while you are outdoors together.
Keep Your Home Cool
Sometimes it’s difficult to cool your home. You may even be tempted to turn your AC off when you depart for the day. However, you must remember that this is dangerous for your pet. Instead, leave your air conditioner on about 76°F when you’re not home. A couple other important pets’ tips that often get overlooked here are making sure your curtains are closed and your pet has plenty of fresh water available to them while you’re gone.
Understanding Your Dog’s Breed
There are some dogs who aren’t able to tolerate the heat as well as others. This is especially true of short-nosed dogs like Boston Terriers, Boxers, Bulldogs, French Bulldogs, Pekingese, Pugs, and Shih Tzu’s. However, there are also some stages in life when dogs are more intolerant of the heat as well. This includes those dogs who are elderly and have health issues. Of course, it’s important to watch your dog when they’re outside in the summertime regardless of their age, breed, or health.
Remember, your pet relies upon you to keep them safe and comfortable throughout the year. A good rule of thumb to live by in the summer is when you’re hot, simply assume that your pet is hot too. Of course, this may not always keep your pet safe and when an accident does arise make sure you have the number for Tampa Bay Veterinary Specialists & Emergency Care Center nearby.
Picture Credit: Photowill
Many people think that dogs were born to swim, but they honestly don’t know how to swim. Instead, they instinctively tread water (doggy paddle) when they fall in, which is different from knowing how to swim. Once you understand this, you’ll see why it’s so important for you to take the time to properly introduce your dog to the water.
How to Introduce Your dog to the Water
Before you introduce your dog to the water you must first make sure that they have good, solid obedience training. This is important because if your dog is going to disobey you on land, they’ll disobey you when around a body of water. When this happens it’s even more dangerous than if you weren’t around a pool, lake, or an ocean. Once you have the obedience training down, you’ll be ready to introduce your dog to the water. There are a few things you’ll want to remember when doing so, including:
- You should never simply throw your dog into any body of water.
- You should never leave your dog unattended around any body of water. If you own a pool in the back of your home, make sure that you place a fence around it so your dog won’t have access when you’re not around. It’s also important that you show him how to get in and out of the pool correctly – by using the pool’s steps. This is something that you should practice with him until you’re sure that he understands where to exit the pool if he does accidentally fall in sometime.
- Remember how tired you get when you go swimming. Dogs feel the same way. This is important to remember because once your dog is tired, he’s more susceptible of becoming a victim of drowning. To prevent this from happening, make sure that you have your dog get out of the water occasionally so he can get some rest.
- Buy your dog a life vest so he’ll have some help swimming in case he grows too tired to do it himself.
- Make sure you take a dog CPR class so that if an accident does occur around the water, you’re prepared to take proper pet health steps.
How to Protect Your dog From Drowning
Besides keeping your dog away from the water when he’s unattended and buying him a doggy life vest, make sure that you also know your dog well before you go by the water. There are some dogs who are simply better suited for the water. These are the breeds that have a short snout. On the other hand, dogs like the pug, Boston Terrier, and English bulldog aren’t equipped to go swimming so you should leave them on the shore.
A few Other Tips for pet Health Around Water
- Never let your dog drink water from lakes or rivers because there’s parasites and algae in them.
- Don’t let your dog drink swimming pool water because it contains chlorine.
- Make sure your dog doesn’t drink ocean water as it has too much salt in it.
- Always rinse your dog off after swimming and dry off their ears too so they don’t get infected.
If you have any questions about this or anything else to do with pet health, make sure you contact Tampa Bay Veterinary Specialists & Emergency Care Center.
Picture Credit: 54118
Bringing home a new pet cat is an exciting time for your family, but it’s also a stressful time for your new feline friend. Since you want to make this time easier on everyone who’s involved, you’ll want to keep some tips in mind.
Buy Your Cat Everything They Need Before Taking Them Home
- A scratching is important if you don’t want your couch shredded.
- Cat furniture
- Food is just as important to your cat as it is to you and your family so you’ll want to make sure it’s healthy. Make sure you choose high-quality food that contains plenty of protein, amino acids, fats, and minerals. It should also be appropriate for their age, energy level, and if they have any special needs. Use this same knowledge in choosing a good treat to occasionally give to them.
- Beds are important because your cat will sleep 16 – 18 hours a day.
- A litter box, scoop, and mat for each individual cat is necessary even though they’ll end up sharing litter boxes anyway. You should also get stain and odor remover for when your cat has an accident.
Meeting Your Family
You’ll want to have a pleasant and calm homecoming. Make sure any children in your home understand the importance of treating your new family member gently. There are also some other important safety tips to keep in mind, including:
- When introducing different pets to each other, go slow and make sure you give them all equal attention. Consider keeping one crated when you’re unavailable to supervise.
- Make sure that anything that’s breakable is stowed away so your new pet won’t knock it over. Any wires, window cords, or full-length curtains that can entangle your new friend should also be taken care of properly.
- There are some plants in your home that could also be harmful. Relocate them either to someplace your cat can’t get them. This is also true of chemicals like cleaning supplies.
- Since your cat will sleep so much, you should move his bed throughout your home to encourage him to move about and explore their environment a bit. If your cat doesn’t do this on his own, consider infusing his bed with some catnip.
- Consider buying a book that will help you understand what your feline’s behavior means so you can better take care of them.
Since different pets react differently, just like different people do, you need to be prepared for anything to happen.
Finding a Vet
It’s also a good idea to find a vet before bringing your new feline friend home. If you live in Tampa Bay, Florida you should contact us here at Tampa Bay Veterinary Specialists & Emergency Care Center. We’d be happy to give them their first wellness visit so you can put your mind at ease and start enjoying your new friendship.
Picture Credit: Mariamichelle
Rescued New York puppy flies to Tampa for medical treatment, among four other pets flown to the Tampa Bay area by charity group for surgery this year
TAMPA, Fla. – A veterinary surgeon at Tampa Bay Veterinary Specialists & Emergency Care Center (TBVSECC), a part of Pathway Vet Alliance, performed a life-saving surgery Wednesday on Giuseppe, a 7-month-old Yorkshire Terrier puppy who suffers from a rare congenital condition called atlanto-axial instability (AAI). (more…)