Holidaying with your dog: Naturally, healthy food – even on the go
Everyone enjoys a vacation. To free ourselves from everyday stress, let our body and soul relax and rejuvenate. Of course, we would like our dogs to accompany us, because what kind of holidays would it be without them. For the perfect dog accompanied vacation, you need the right preparation. In this guide we would like to give you a few practical tips on how dog feeding on the go can be designed in a species-appropriate and practical manner and some other things to look out for.
Planning a vacation with your dog
The first step to a vacation with your dog is to decide the length of time, followed by where and how you want to organise your vacation. Would you like to travel by car, by caravan or by flight? Would you like to camp, rent an apartment or maybe stay in a hotel? Should the vacation be coastal, or a hiking trip in the mountains? As soon as you have concrete ideas, you then have to find out whether the dog can be integrated without any problems.
Holidaying abroad with your dog
If you want to go abroad with your dog, you should familiarise yourself with the entry regulations of each country and also find out about transit regulations should you have to cross other countries on route. In some countries, the entry requirements are much stricter than in many EU countries, so that a short vacation with your dog may be almost impossible. Regulations can vary from breed to breed, thus we advise always advise a comprehensive breed specific check.
It is important to adhere to local rules otherwise the entry and/ or return journey can become a problem.
- What are the entry and possible transit regulations?
- What are the regulations regarding vaccinations, worming and possible quarantine regulations?
- Is there an obligation to wear a leash or a muzzle?
- What are the regulations when rturning home ?
Your vet should be able to help with this, or at least advise where you might find the necessary information.
Holidaying with your dog – when is the best time
If you can it is advisable to choose the off-season for you dog vacation. In the off-season it is usually a little cooler and quieter, there are less tourists and people about and facilities are usually more open to dogs. During the main season there are often spaces that are banned to dogs, such as beaches – in the off-season, these bans are often lifted.
Naturavetal tip – how to avoid holiday stress
If you know that holiday preparations cause you stress and that you are mostly tense in the few days leading up to the holiday, then your dog will perceive this stress and may react to it with tension and uncertainty. This can then show up in the form of soft droppings or diarrhoea, which can make it difficult to start your vacation. Canis Extra Tranquil Pet can help the dog to maintain its inner calm and serenity so that the holiday can begin in a more relaxed manner.
Types of holiday travel
Once you have decided upon a destination, you will then have to decide how you want to get there. Generally, you will know how your dog deals with various situations such as car or train journeys.
Some of these situations can be extremely stressful for your dog, it may be better to choose a vacation spot that is not too far away, especially if it’s your first time.
In general, long car journeys can be very stressful for dogs but familiar environment, surrounded by family is often preferable to other options. With the right training, even a long drive can be mastered, please remember to plan in sufficient break for both two and four legged travellers.
If travelling by ferry, your dog may be required to stay in the car or put in a crate. Causing hightened anxiety. From the UK to Europe we advise Eurotunnel as the prefered option becsue the dogs stays with you in the car, it is also usually shorter, cooler and there are excerise areas at either end.
Train journeys have the advantage as you avoid traffic jams, however delays or cancellations can be problematic. Other people getting on and off, with dogs, and the possibility of having to change trains several times can also cause unrest and thus become very stressful for both the owners and their dogs.
When considering air travel, there are special regulations that you have to check in advance, it is not always possible to take a dog with you without further complications. Some airlines offer the option of having small dogs under a certain weight in the cabin, in a travel bag, but long-haul flights can still be very stressful for the dog and should be avoided.
Finding dog friendly accommodation
Whether it’s a holiday home, apartment, hotel or campsite – there are many dog friendly sites, and you should register your dog. Everything else is basically a matter of taste. During the busy season, it can happen that dog-friendly accommodations are sold out, so you should plan in good time. A holiday home or apartment offers a lot of space, and you are free to determine your daily routine, whilst a hotel usually offers more service but less space and free time management. Campsites often offer better proximity to nature. With a static caravan or mobile home, things look different again, of course – as there is usually more space available.
We also advise ascertaing how dog friendly the destination really is. Some establishments like to call themsleves “dog friendly“ but will not allow dogs in public, bar or restaurant spaces.
Feeding your dog on vacation – ensure that it is species-appropriate
If you’ve been searching and finally found a suitable feeding concept, then of course you will want to stick to this concept even on vacation. For dogs with allergies or intolerances, it is not that easy to find the right food or a convenient way to store it, which is why it is particularly difficult if you have to change the way you feed your dog on vacation.
It can be problematic to continue to feed the previous food, for example BARF feeding. Not everyone can take a large amount of meat with them on vacation. Also, depending on the region to which you are traveling, the range of meat, vegetables and fruit can vary. Feeding previously unknown ingredients that may not be tolerated so well can be problematic.
Should you have to change your feeding on vacation, then it is important to choose a feed that is similar to the previous regime.
Many owners opt for raw feeding, to ensure that the dog is supplied with valuable ingredients in a species-appropriate manner – without synthetic vitamins, animal or vegetable by-products such as feathers, claws, leaves and stems or ingredients with unidentifiable names that need a chemical dictionary to know what they actually mean.
Natural feeding on vacation
With our natural feeding concepts there are numerous options for feeding your dog on vacation, on short trips and of course in everyday life. Always in a species-appropriate manner and without unnecessary additives
Ready made made meals are often preferable on vacation. You can choose between cold-pressed Canis Plus® dry food or ready-made Canis Plus® Complete Meals.
Another option is to use our gently cooked Canis Plus® Pure Meat Pots or the Canis Plus® Meat Rolls if you are looking for an alternative to raw meat. Our air-dried Canis Plus® flake mixes will replace the preparation of fresh vegetables / fruit. Simply rehydrate the flake mix of valuable, plant-based ingredients and add to our pure meat pots or meat rolls. If combining our pure meat pots or meat rolls with our air-dried flakes, you only have to add a calcium source such as our Canis Extra organic eggshell powder and an oil source to quickly prepare a balanced and individual meal for you dog.
Our cold-pressed dry food are a quick and easy way to feed while on vacation or in everyday life. The required amount of feed can be precisely portioned, making it easier to pack the correct quantity or to order a smaller pack for your vacation. The dry food takes up little space and is neither heat nor cold sensitive even after opening. The empty paper sack can be easily disposed of or recycled. Thanks to the cold pressing process, our dry food stays in the stomach / intestines similar to wet food or BARF – for this reason Canis Plus® cold-pressed dry food is a simple and practical alternative to wet/raw feeding on vacation. You can find out about the numerous advantages of our cold-pressed food types by clicking this information link.
- Gently cold-pressed, does not swell in the stomach
- More than 60% fresh meat content before drying
- Can be combined with Canis Plus® complete meals, Canis Plus® pure meat pots or rolls with a side dish for BARF
- Contains only one source of animal protein per dish
- Contains natural vitamins and minerals
- Free from wheat, soy and dairy products
- Without the addition of colourings, flavourings, preservatives or synthetic vitamins
- Environmentally conscious packaging
- Available in practical 5kg and 1kg bags
The gently cooked Canis Plus® complete menus are ready-made meals that are available in 400g or 800g cans. They are ideal for dogs that cannot tolerate dry food. They represent a simple and practical way to feed dogs in a species-appropriate manner and close to BARF, without having to manually prepare meals or having to pack supplements.
Naturavetal Tip for BARF feeders
Thanks to the open declaration, you can see exactly how much muscle meat, offal, vegetable or fruit that is contained in our wet meals – enabling you to choose the menu or the pure meat variation that best suits your usual diet.
- Open declaration – you can see exactly how much muscle meat, offal, vegetables and fruit are contained in our wet food meals
- Completely grain-free or refined with valuable, gluten-free alternatives
- Fast and practical feeding – you do not need to add any supplements and still remain species-appropriate and close to BARF feeding
- For allergy sufferers – 7 varieties with a single source animal protein
- An alternative for dogs that cannot tolerate raw meat
- No refrigeration required when un-opened.
Canis Plus® Pure Meat Pots and Canis Plus® Meat Rolls
Canis Plus® pure meat pots and Canis Plus® meat rolls are a practical holiday alternative for those who would like to freshly prepare vegetables and fruit while on vacation, whilst foregoing the refrigerated storage and processing of raw meat. They contain meat from only one animal protein source and are available in 9 different varieties. You retain control and flexibility, as you are free to decide how high the meat content should be and which side dishes and supplements you would like to add.
The advantages of Canis Plus® pure meat pots and Canis Plus® meat rolls
- Open declaration with precise details of the ingredients
- The alternative for dogs that cannot tolerate raw meat (BARF)
- Free composition: You can decide whether your dog should receive 60, 70 or 80% meat in his daily feeding
- Versatile design: You can choose any additions freely and as required – our team of experts will be happy to help you if you have any questions
- Suitable as part of an elimination diet
- No refrigeration required when un-opened.
Naturavetal Tip: change the feed a few days before your holiday
The changes that await the dog on vacation, such as a new environment, perhaps a climate change and different daily routines and structures, can make a dog insecure and stressful, which can contribute to the dog’s defences being weakened. If vaccinations or wormer cures are added, some of which are necessary before traveling to certain regions, can lead to the dog’s immune system becoming more prone to problems.
Thus if you plan on altering the diet while on vacation we advise changing several days in advance so that the dogs tastebuds and digestive tract can become used to the change, leaving one less potential cause of stress.
Snacks for your dog on holiday
Of course, your dog will want to be rewarded on holiday for good behaviour and a solid chew to nibble on is an essential for the travel suitcase. But snacks can also be important on day trips, for example, when you want to offer the dog a small snack in between meals. The dog should get a suitable treat that gives him new strength – without having to plan a rest phase for digestion afterwards.
The care package for the dog on vacation - what to pack?
The foundation for a relaxing holiday has been laid with a natural feeding concept. But there’s a high chance that your dog will be undertaking some unusual activities and experiencing unfamiliar environments, so there are still a few special situations that one can prepare for. We have summarised what should also be packed.
The cause of diarrhoea could be stress-related, or the dog has drunk too much salt water or has eaten something different outside – diarrhoea on vacation is a very common and unpleasant thing for the owner and dog. Our carrot granules can quickly remedy this.
Dogs used to a more gentle environment often struggle with hot pavements, hot sand, sharp stones on hikes or salt strewn sidewalks in winter. The dog’s paws are a particularly vulnerable are when on holiday – regular care with our Paw & Skin Balm helps to protect paws and to keep them healthy.
Open windows and drafts, such as when driving a car, and central heating air can strain our dogs’ eyes just as much as sandstorms or salt water by the sea. Itching and redness around the eyes are the first signs that the eyes need support – our eye care products are the perfect choice.
The emergency vacation dog kit - what should belong in it?
An emergency bag should be with you on vacation, because accidents could easily happen e.g., a dog steps onto a shard, catches a splinter or injures itself in some other way. The following items should not be missing from the dog’s emergency kit:
- Cotton wool
- Self-adhesive bandage for external fixation
- Adhesive plaster
- Wound disinfectants
- Tick tongs/card
- Activated charcoal, as a powder or tablets
- EU pet passport with all relevant data, chip number and vaccination status (Depending on the holiday destination, different mandatory vaccinations, wormer cures, etc. may be necessary – it is best to research in advance about the requirements of the destination country)
- Address list of the nearest vets / veterinary clinics at the holiday destination as well as a list of clinics with a 24 hour emergency service
What else should be packed?
- (Foldable) bowl for water on the go and a water bottle with fresh drinking water
- Dog blanket or basket
- Travel or transport cage/box
- Dog towel
- Dog toys
- Poo bags
When to go on vacation without a dog?
Most of the time, planning a vacation without your dog is not an option for dog owners. But there are situations where it can make sense to leave the dog with family or friends, or in a good kennel. For example, if you are planning a short vacation and the dog dislikes the new environment making it very stressed. Here it is usually better if the dog can stay with family or friends which will be more relaxing. For some dogs, the separation from the familiar environment creates more tension than the brief separation from the owner – at least as long as known caregivers are still available.
If you have planned your holiday well, informed yourself about transit and entry regulations, ascertained and updated the necessary documents of the dog, found suitable accommodation and decided how you would like to travel to the holiday destination, nothing should stands in the way of an enjoyable and relaxed dog holiday.