When you are flying with a puppy, there are certain things you need to bring.
When I first started traveling with a puppy regularly there was a huge learning curve to it. I knew how to navigate airports well enough and pack my own bags, having to care for a puppy along the way too threw off my packing. And I always forgot an essential item.
Over the years* I have figured out what I really needed and what I can get away with leaving at home.
Collapsible Water Bowls
Puppies get just as dehydrated on planes as humans and you need to be giving them plenty of water to re-hydrate throughout the trip. Collapsible water bowls are the best because they save so much space. Just be aware that if you have a water dog, they may try to swim in the bowl and spill most of the water.
If you do forget to bring a water dish, ask any flight attendant for a cup of water (no ice) for your puppy.
You need puppy training pads. And at least five!
I keep one wrapped around the bottom insert of the carrier. That way if the puppy can’t hold it the entire flight, clean up is so much easier. Don’t forget to wrap another around the base after you clean the soiled one out.
I also use them on the floor in the bathrooms during layovers. Be aware that unless you are flying with an adult that knows the drill, the puppy will likely run off to pee in the farthest corner from where you laid the pad down at.
Read More: What to Expect Flying with a Pet
Baby wipes are a must! You never know what kind of mess your puppy might get into or make for that matter. Or even where it will happen. You might not be anywhere near a place where you can get soap and water.
I recommend getting the baby wipes made for sensitive skin.
Read More: Tips for Flying with a Puppy in Cabin
Empty Water Bottle
Let’s be real for a moment, airports are freaking expensive. A bottle of water can cost upwards of $3 and you aren’t even getting a liter of it. Not to mention the whole environmental aspect of more plastic going into our landfills.
I always bring a Nalgene bottle with me when I fly. Don’t get me wrong, I love the straw in my Camelbak, but I have found the changing pressure in the plane causes the bite valve to leak. My backpack ended up soaked one time!
Many airports nowadays have water bottle filling stations making it cheaper and easier for you to bring your own.
Rescue Remedy is a lifesaver when it comes to calming anxious pets. And children for that matter. I remember a couple times Mom gave it to me as a kid. It’s all natural, pet safe, and really works. Rescue Remedy is similar to us drinking chamomile tea to calm us before bed.
Puppies need to eat too. Make sure you bring at least a quart zip-lock of food for your puppy. If you ever think that everything will be okay, you’ll get from point A to point B when scheduled, remember that stuff happens. Flights could be ridiculously oversold and you might get bumped off leaving you stuck in the airport. Weather could interfere with your perfect plan, also leaving you stuck in the airport.
Make sure you have food.
You need to have a soft-sided carrier that fits within the dimensions of 12inX12inX18in. This is about the size of the space under the seat in front of you. Though it is important to note that on some planes, the space under the aisle seats is a bit narrower due to the installation of electrical outlets.
The best pet carries are ones that have netting all the way around giving the puppy plenty of fresh air.
Pet carriers don’t have to cost more than $40 unless you opt for the kennel with rolling wheels which I cannot recommend enough! The wheels really make the long treks through the airport less of a hassle.
Carabiner clips are amazing. I clip them to everything because I never know when I will need to clip something to my bag. Things that usually need to be kept accessible I usually always have at least two with me all the time.
You bring a Kindle or maybe an iPad to occupy your time on the flight, what is your puppy going to do? Chew through the side of the carrier. Thankfully, I have never had this happen, but I have been close to disaster a couple of times. Give your puppy a toy or something to chew on to keep them occupied. Odds are the plane will lull them to sleep, but just in case it doesn’t.
And remember to get something without a squeaker! I can guarantee your fellow passengers with hate you with a passion if you give your puppy one with a squeaker.
The travel pillow is for you and trust me you will need it. The one linked is my favorite and it’s called “World’s Best” for a reason!