Holiday travel and pet boarding tips for a safe Thanksgiving season


By Lidja Gillmeister, DVM

With Halloween already behind us and Thanksgiving just around the corner, the holiday travel season is almost in full swing. As pet owners begin making holiday travel plans, the issue of whether or not to bring the family pet along for the ride is bound to arise: and while traveling with pets can present unique challenges, a combination of smart tips and safe alternatives can help pet owners rest easy in the knowledge that their four-legged friends will be comfortable and well-cared for throughout the holiday season.

As an experienced veterinarian, I often encounter questions about air travel with family pets; and while this is certainly a viable option in some cases, it is not for everyone. In addition, clients frequently ask about pet sedation for traveling – and I always encourage them to raise the issue well in advance of any travel plans in order to allow sufficient time for risk education and discussion, as well as a trial run to ensure that the animal in question won’t experience any adverse side-effects to the medication. Before purchasing tickets and establishing a holiday travel itinerary, pet owners should research airline requirements for bringing pets on board and discuss any sedation plans or other concerns with a qualified veterinary professional.

Secure, comfortable and compassionate pet boarding at La Jolla Veterinary Hospital

Despite the potential complications and advanced planning requirements involved, some individuals do choose to travel with their pets during the holidays. For most travelers, however, pet boarding poses a much more convenient and comfortable alternative for animals and their owners alike – and when administered by veterinary professionals in a clean, safe and well-run environment, this option can guarantee health care and emergency resources in addition to routine care for cats and dogs over the holidays.

Holiday boarding typically fills up quickly, so calling several months in advance is always a good idea. When evaluating a potential boarding facility, it is important to inquire about the environment, health policies, protocol for veterinary emergencies and staff’s ability to meet each individual pet’s needs. At the

La Jolla Veterinary Hospital

, we offer high-quality pet boarding services and accommodations in a compassionate environment staffed by trained professionals. We are committed to running a parasite-free facility, first and foremost: and in order to ensure the safety and well-being of all our visiting pets, our veterinarians require boarders to have a negative fecal screening for parasites within the last 6 months, as well as up-to-date vaccinations. In addition, we treat all boarding pets with Capstar, a fast-acting solution that kills any adult fleas and eliminates the spread of disease among our “residents.”

During their stay at the La Jolla Veterinary Hospital, your beloved pets are treated with all the care and attention they are accustomed to at home. Our staff makes every effort to keep boarded pets happy, healthy and active – and in the event of a health concern or emergency, a doctor is always readily available for examination and treatment, and to provide quarantine facilities for the safety of both your pet and any others staying with us. For complete peace of mind during this year’s hectic holiday season, bring your pets to the La Jolla Veterinary Hospital – and rest assured that they are in the best, most qualified and most caring hands. To learn more, schedule an appointment or request boarding reservations, visit us online: