Don't get me wrong, I love that I have the opportunity to travel a lot, but if you have a pet, you know just how much it pulls on your heartstrings to leave them, no matter how much you're looking forward to traveling. That "how could you leave me?" look that my dog gives me as soon as I pull out my suitcase breaks my heart, every time. And, it truly makes me question whether or not I can. Alas, sometimes we've gotta leave our pets behind, and so long as they're in a safe place or with a safe sitter, everything will be OK. That said, there are definitely a few important ways to make your pet feel loved when you're on vacation that you should take the time to do.
If you're opting for a pet sitter, make sure that they come with positive reviews and solid references. Take the time to meet with your potential pet sitters in person. If you're leaving your pet with a friend or a family member, don't assume that they'll know what's best for your pet just because they're familiar with them. Treat them as you would a professional, and go over every single detail. If you choose to board your pet, make sure that you've been to the facility, met the staff, read the reviews and have at least one person you trust nearby who can check up on your pet in case of emergency.
While the logistics of assigning responsibilities are important, there's a lot of work you'll have to do with your pet on your own end before you leave, to ensure that they're as comfortable and happy as possible. The last thing you want to do is create a situation in which your pet feels punished, anxious or abandoned. Here's how to ready your pet for a big separation.