Travelling with Pets

Spring & Summer are coming… What you and your pet need to know to have a safe, happy & healthy season

Travelling With Pets
Ensure that your pet’s vaccinations are up to date. Health certificates can be obtained from your veterinarian & should be issued no later than 14 days prior to travel.
Crossing the border into the U.S. and back into Canada will require proof of your pet’s rabies vaccination (rabies certificate is given at the time of vaccine). It is always a good idea to take all your pet’s health records with you.
Check with your veterinarian about any disease concerns in areas you are traveling to. Preventative measures are recommended for heartworm disease, fleas and other parasites.
Avoid altering your pet’s diet while away from home.
Be sure your pet has identification tags including a contact number that can easily be traced to you should you become separated from your pet. Microchips are a good idea if you are travelling beyond the province.
Make sure your pet is in good health. The stress of travel can be detrimental to older animals or those with chronic diseases such as diabetes. Talk to your veterinarian if you suspect a trip may be too hard on your pet. Check out!

Travelling By Car
Pets should be safely restrained in the vehicle (seat belt or crate).
Pets should NEVER be left unattended in a vehicle – heat stroke can happen in only minutes.
If dogs are travelling in pick up trucks they need to be restrained (ideally in a crate). Metal flat beds heat up quickly and flying debris can injure eyes & ears.


Travelling By Air (You can minimize the chance of an unpleasant experience by following a few guidelines.)
Contact the airline well in advance to check regulations and services.
Health certificates can be obtained from your veterinarian & should be issued no later than 14 days prior to travel. Regulations state that dogs and cats must be at least 8 weeks old before flying.
Current health and rabies vaccination certificates will be required.
Try to book a direct, midweek flight or one with a minimum of stops.
During warmer periods, reduce risk of overheating by choosing early morning or late evening flights.
The proper cage (available from most airlines and pet shops), should have the following features: Large enough to let the animal stand, turn and lie down. Leak-proof bottom covered with plenty of absorbent material. Ventilation on opposite sides, with exterior rims or knobs to prevent blocked airflow. Label “LIVE ANIMALS” – with arrows indicating upright position and your name, address and phone number.
Feeding and emergency instructions should be attached.

Check ahead to make sure hotels, campgrounds and your friends accept pets – don’t assume they do. A list of “Pet Friendly” accommodations is available through the Alberta Motor Association or online at!
Consider what to do with your pet while visiting attractions or eating in restaurants that don’t welcome pets.

Camping With Pets

Trouble can arise quickly in country settings. Skunks, porcupines, snakes and other creatures can bite or injure your pet. To avoid this danger, keep your pet in sight and/or on a leash and always be considerate of wildlife and other campers.

Upon Return..

You should consider a health examination for your pet following your trip to determine if any internal parasites (roundworms, hookworms, heartworm) or external parasites (ticks, fleas) were picked up in contaminated wooded or exercise areas.