SOURCE: Veterinary Specialty Center of Tucson

Veterinary Specialty Center of Tucson

January 17, 2012 17:08 ET

Strap Fido on the Car Roof for a Long Trip? Let's Not.

Veterinary Specialty Center of Tucson (VSCT) Offers Tips on How to Travel With a Pet... Just in Time for Spring Break

TUCSON, AZ--(Marketwire - Jan 17, 2012) - With presidential candidate Mitt Romney in the news for having strapped the family dog to a car roof for a twelve hour drive, this seems an excellent time to inform people on how -- and how not -- to travel with your pet.

"Dogs and cats are considered a part of the family," stated Dr. Barbara Gores, Diplomate, American College of Veterinary Surgeons and Founding Owner of VSCT. "Still, sometimes people do silly -- and potentially dangerous -- things with their pet. So we are offering some common sense tips on the dos and don'ts on traveling with a pet."

Tips from VSCT include:

  • Take your pet to your family veterinarian for a check-up before a trip.

  • Make sure his or her vaccinations are current and bring a copy of the vaccination record with you. (Don't forget that if you are taking the pet on a plane or crossing into Canada or Mexico you may also need a health certificate.)

  • Take along your pet's regular medications, food and some water.

  • Bring a crate that is large enough to allow the pet to stand, turn and lie down in to keep your pet safe and out of trouble In fact, a crate is required for airline travel.

  • Make sure your pet is secure and correctly identified. A leash and collar is strongly recommended. Identification tags with the pet's name, your name, your home phone number, and email address as well as proof of rabies shots is very important. A permanent form of identification, such as a microchip, is also a very good idea.

  • Never give your pet sedatives or tranquilizers unless under a veterinarian's prescription. Such medications can interfere with your pet's ability to maintain its balance and equilibrium, which could prevent your pet from being able to brace itself and prevent injury. Air travel while under the influence of these medications is especially dangerous as exposure to increased altitude can cause respiratory and cardiovascular problems.

  • Do not let your dog or cat ride with their head sticking out of an open window. This can lead to eye injuries, falls or escapes!

  • Never let your dog ride in the back of an open truck. This is extremely dangerous and can lead to severe injuries or death.

  • When exploring new sites, do not walk your dog on an escalator, since its claws or fur could become caught.

  • And lastly, do not strap your pet to a car roof or anywhere outside a vehicle, especially one traveling at a high rate of speed!

Considered amongst the nation's leading specialty veterinary centers, VSCT delivers compassionate, comprehensive emergency and specialty care in the fields of Emergency and Critical Care, Dentistry, Dermatology, Oncology, Neurology/Neurosurgery, Internal Medicine, Surgery, Ophthalmology, Diagnostic Imaging (MRI, CT, Ultrasound), Companion Animal Rehabilitation Therapy and Behavior. VSCT has won numerous awards, including:

  • 2011 Finalist, Business Growth, Wells Fargo Copper Cactus Award
  • 2011 and 2006 Hospital Design, Veterinary Economics Merit Award Winner, and
  • 2010 Community Service, Wells Fargo Copper Cactus Award.

Contact Information

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