WITH Christmas holidays upon us, dog owners planning on camping with their pets are being encouraged to take the proper precautions to ensure the wellbeing and comfort of their canine companions.
Dogs Queensland General Manager Rob Harrison said there are several precautions families can take to ensure the safety of their dogs whilst on the road and setting up camp this Christmas.
"Camping with your family and pets can be a very enjoyable experience but it is not a holiday decision that should be made lightly," Mr Harrison said.
"For pet owners committed to travelling with their dogs, there are some basic but effective actions they can take to ensure a happy holiday for the whole family.
"This includes being wary of extreme weather and choosing a camping spot or holiday accommodation that is dog friendly.
"Owners should also consult their vet to identify any additional health risks to make sure their dogs are given the appropriate vaccinations before travelling."
Mr Harrison said families taking long road tips will need to make frequent stops on the way to give their dog fresh air and an opportunity to stretch their legs.
"Travelling presents an unnatural environment for animals so it is important to ensure your dog has a large enough cage that is well ventilated with enough water to keep them hydrated," he said.
"A safety harness is another essential item to help ensure the security of your pet when travelling and reduce the risk of on-road accidents.
"Avoid feeding your dog whilst in a moving vehicle and make sure to give them a light meal three or four hours prior to departure to reduce their chances of getting motion sickness.
"Packing your dog's favourite toys and foods will also help them feel more comfortable in a new environment."
Mr Harrison also encouraged owners to not become complacent when it comes to cleaning up after their four-legged friends.
"Although you may be away from home, the same rules apply when it comes to cleaning up after your canine," he said.
"You are responsible for your dog's droppings and should use a poop-scoop or bag to collect them when at camping grounds or national parks."