petsitterHolidays often mean travel, but canines are not always invited to the festivities, leaving their humans to opt for boarding or leaving them with a pet sitter.

Whether you’ve hired a pet sitter, or are leaving your dog with a friend, here are some tips to make sure your furry friend is comfortable while you’re gone.

Pet Sitter Checklist

Get a checkup before you go. Your vet will be able to confirm the health of your dog and vaccinate them with any overdue vaccinations.  This is especially important if your dog will be around other animals while you’re gone.

Provide contact information to your pet sitter. Don’t forget to include a cell phone number, vet name and number, and the location of your destination. If you’re traveling to an area where you’ll be completely unreachable, designate someone local to make decisions in your absence, and put it in writing.

In case of emergency. Talk to your pet sitter about how you want veterinary emergencies handled. Pick a pet sitter you trust, and leave your credit card number with him or her (along with a signed note allowing them to use the card and authorize medical treatments). Provide your vet’s office with the credit card information and a copy of the note to keep on record.

Keep your sitter informed. Don’t forget to leave a full list of instructions for how to handle bathroom breaks, walks, and meals.  Make note of any special dietary needs, health problems, or temperament issues your dog may have.

Home away from home. Don’t forget to leave your dog with their favorite bed, blanket, or toy.  This will help provide comfort and familiarity while you’re away.

Taking a few extra steps can help guarantee a pleasant return home from your holiday adventures.