GetTheFunOut, aka GTFO, is about enjoying life. While the focus is on travel and outdoors, we're here to help you have fun all around Arizona at festivals, fairs, food trucks, museums, sports, and all of the other unique activities Arizona has to offer. Follow on twitter @gtfoaz to get updates on what's going on around the state.
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Separation Anxiety: What to Do When You Must Travel Without Your Pet
Do you fret when you need to leave your pet
overnight with someone else? We often talk about our pets having separation
anxiety when it comes to us leaving them home alone, but when a furry companion
is part of the family, it can be just as stressful for owners to travel without
their pets. Here is sound advice for selecting someone to care for your pet
responsibly and lovingly.
There are numerous high-quality pet sitters
and boarding services available these days, but securing the right person to
tend to your beloved animal isn’t always easy. If you don’t have an appropriate
friend or family member to leave your pet with, there are other good options.
You can go through online services that connect you with people, and there are
even pet sitters who have specialized credentials
such as the training in companion animal first-aid. There are some people who
think pet sitting is easy, but experienced sitters are worth securing and will
often offer a written contract for their services. You can interview potential candidates before making
your selection, and the National Association of Pet Sitters recommends
scheduling a meet-and-greet to ensure the sitter is a good
match. This is a chance to see how your pet interacts with the sitter, as well
as to check your own comfort level.
Will someone tend to your pet in your home?
Family members, friends, or neighbors are sometimes willing to stay in your
home if it’s just a night or two, and if you have someone reliable, this could
make for an easy solution. Cats can often be left alone if you’re going away
for just one night, and some professional pet sitters house sit as well as pet sit.
If you expect your pet to remain in your home
while you’re away, you should do some extra pet-proofing. For cats, the litter boxes
should be cleaned so they aren’t tempted to potty elsewhere, and furniture
should be appropriately covered to protect it from toenails and fur. Offer your
family feline a scratching post, and keep electrical cords and cleaning
supplies safely where your kitty won’t encounter them while you’re gone.
For your pooch, ensure trash is secured,
laundry is put away, and foods and toxic products are out of reach. If your dog
is staying at the pet sitter’s home, VetStreet notes you should look for
someone who offers an environment as similar to what your dog is
used to as possible. If you allow your dog on furniture and to sleep in bed
with you, try to find someone who offers the same circumstances. Also, keep in
mind that dogs who are unfamiliar to crates or doggie doors will need training in
those areas before being left with someone who expects to use them.
The American Kennel Club points out that you
should gather all your pet’s necessities before leaving for your trip.
Ensure you have plenty of food on hand in case you are gone longer than
expected, and leave detailed feeding instructions. Don’t expect someone to
remember verbal instructions; written information allows you and the sitter to
clarify as needed. Also, note if your pets are on different foods, as well as
any medications, potty schedules, and sleep routines. Leave your vet’s
information, a local emergency contact, and your own emergency contact
information. You also might want to leave some of your pet’s favorite things
with the sitter, such as toys, blankets, and bedding. Consult a checklist to make sure you don’t miss
You can travel with peace of mind by enacting
a few simple strategies that will protect your pet and ensure good care while
you’re away. Do your research to find the right sitter for your situation,
prepare wisely, and gather your pet’s supplies. While there is no substitute
for your tender loving care, there are reliable pet sitters who are willing to
help.--Guest post by Michael Bourke, the co-creator of SciCamps, which is currently in its very early stages, but aims to provide people with learning resources outside of the classroom. Michael is a former boy scout and is a current lover of the outdoors and nature.
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Big Guy Gear Reviews are what the
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