Pet Travel, Part II

Pet Travel, Part IILife as a traveling medical professional is a lot more fun when you have a pet on your side, but once your road-trip is over, your pet will still likely need some extra TLC to feel at home wherever you end up. We have a few tips on helping your pets adjust once you arrive at your next placement:

For dogs:

Dogs are naturally sociable, so just dropping your dog off in a new place and then heading straight to work is probably not going to make your pooch very happy. Instead, when you get to a new place:

  • Ease into things: Dogs do better in a new environment if you help them ease into it. Open the crate and play with your dog right away, unpack your dog’s toys and bed immediately, and giver your dog a treat in your new home to leave a positive impression.
  • Take a walk: Dogs love to explore. Taking a walk through your new neighborhood is more than just a good way to stretch your legs–it’s also a great way to make sure that your dog gets more comfortable with his or her new situation.
  • Consider doggy day-care: While most cats would likely be content with roaming the house while you’re at work, a dog may not handle long hours alone very well. Especially for puppies, daycare–even just for a few days a week–could be a good option, as daycare is a great place for your dog to get out his or her energy and interact with other pets.

Some dogs may be more high-maintenance than others, but making sure your pet is comfortable wherever you’re going is critical to an enjoyable experience for the both of you.

For cats:

  • Secure your home: No, we’re not worried about your cat opening up doors on its own. It is important, however, to make sure the doors and windows at your new place are closed (and the litter box is in place) before letting your cat out to explore. While your cat may surprise you by adapting quickly to your new place, remember that it’s not uncommon for cats to spend a few days in hiding while adjusting.
  • Make your cat feel at home: Despite what they might like you to believe, cats do get a little sentimental about home at times. Try re-creating a favorite resting or hiding spot, and your cat may feel at home that much quicker.

Helping a cat adjust to a new home will probably be a lot easier than doing the same thing for a dog, but doing a few things to make your cat feel more comfortable certainly won’t hurt.

For all pets:

If your hours are unpredictable, or if your pet does better in a one-on-one situation, a dog walker or cat sitter can be a great solution for providing some companionship and exercise for your favorite playmate when you’re at work. Make sure to find a trustworthy pet-sitter who you’re comfortable letting access your home if you choose this route. Either way, a little extra companionship probably couldn’t hurt.

If CAT or PET are more than just imaging scans to you, be sure to let your RTG recruiter know from day one what your situation is. Pets are always welcome, and we can help ensure that your assignment and housing are suitable for the two of you.

photo credit: kevin dooley via photopin cc

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