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  • Writer's pictureAureate

Travelling with your Whippet

Updated: Nov 29, 2023

At Aureate, travelling with our dogs is something we are very passionate about. Whether trekking across Canada and the US or internationally, travelling with your whippet can open up a whole new world of adventure. The following recommendations are based on our experiences to have a safer more fun filled journey.

-Safety Collars: We cannot stress this point enough. Although we are ADAMANT about NO collars left on our dogs at home EVER, we firmly believe a thin 0.5 inch collar with your phone number embroidered on it and your dog's name, can be a game changer. When we are on the road, we pull out our safety collars (ordered off of Amazon) and they wear them 24/7.
(The exception being if we let two dogs off leash together in an enclosed area, the collars come off as they can pose a strangulation risk. Yes, we do know dogs who have died this way!)
-GPS Tracker: We use Tractive in Canada as it is a small device which attaches to our safety collar and offers 24/7 monitoring. It also has a live tracking option. Otherwise, it pings in with your dog's location every couple of minutes. You can mark "safety perimeters" ie: your home and yard. This tracker is the best option for those of you who travel with your whippets within Canada and internationally, because it is the ONLY tracker that will work internationally; meaning we use it in the United States, UK and the EU with our dogs. We monitor them with the "live" option while they are boarding the plane to ensure they are transferred to the same flight we are on. Now the "live" option will only work for 2 hours maximum, so we turn this option off when not needed. Without running "live", the battery will last between 48-72 hours so we make an sure to recharge it in the evening. The downside is that Tractive requires an annual subscription, but it's certainly affordable ($140 CAD), as it relies on cell tower use.
-Apple AirTag: As you can see pictured above, we also use AirTags on our safety collars. The downside being in order to work you have to be in a densely populated area and it relies on being a few hundred feet from an iPhone. The reason we use AirTags too is the battery life lasts much longer and in the event our Tractive battery has died, this is a last resort for us. You can easily order AirTag holders off Amazon or Etsy. We like the 3D printer ones pictured above as they cannot be removed without a screwdriver and do not pose an additional safety risk by catching on other objects easily.
Part of our setup while travelling
-Car Crates: Using crates in your car can save your dog's life! Not only is it imperative should you get into an accident, but also as you are exiting the vehicle, it can prevent your antsy dog who is tired of travelling from door rushing and making a mad dash for freedom at a gas station. Any crate is better than nothing, but in order to ENSURE your pet's safety consider saving up for a crash tested option. At Aureate, we take no shortcuts, ALL our dogs travel crated, ALWAYS. Pictured to the right is a Variocage Double in the back of our SUV. Our dogs are trained and comfortable travelling two together, HOWEVER we do NOT recommend this for the novice dog owner. We train a lot early on at Aureate and travel a lot. Our dogs have many miles under their belts so they are confident and relaxed travellers. (If you are interested in looking for a crash tested crate check our the links provided on our "Resources" page.)
-Dog Friendly Hotels: Be prepared to pay a Dog Fee of +$25 per dog per night. Make sure you read the hotel's pet policy in advance. We always read the fees before booking. Believe it or not some hotels will claim to be "pet friendly" but then charge $100/night for the dog. That's certainly not what we consider inviting. (Obviously the fee can vary quite a bit.) Outside of staying in NYC, we've found most places will charge $25/night. That said when you do stay at a hotel, be a good guest. Pick up after your dog. Make sure your dog is under control in the public access areas. Keep your dog content and quiet without disturbing your neighbours and you'll find travelling with your whippet can be quite enjoyable!
-Whippet Beds: By now your whippet should have informed you that they are in fact creatures of comfort. Meaning being on the road is no excuse to leave all the comforts of home, at home. Your dog will appreciate the extra effort it takes to bring their bed and especially their crate. (Remember you cannot leave your dog loose in a hotel room unsupervised.)
-Plan your Route: This is especially important when travelling with very young puppies; they will need the opportunity for potty breaks every 2-3 hours. This also gives you a chance to stretch your legs and not fatigue behind the wheel. Be mindful of where you potty your dog. It's far better to find a rest stop or pull off the highway to the closest gas station well away from the busy traffic.
-Documentation: If you are crossing the border with your whippet by car, make sure you have their vaccination record (rabies). I always travel with a copy of their ownership papers.
-Eating on the Road: Don't be surprised if you haven't done a lot of travelling with your whippet if they fast the first day or so. Ensure they have adequate access to water, but some dogs who aren't accustomed to being on the road take a day or so settle into the new routine.
-Adaptil: This pheromone spray can be purchased at your local pet shop. The pheromone mimics the one a puppy's mother naturally releases to calm the puppy down. We recommend spraying the car crate lightly 10 minutes before departure.
-Potty Before you leave: Although that could be targeted at both you and your dog, we are particularly interested in your ensuring your whippet has a relaxed car ride. Even better if you can take your dog for walk before you leave especially if you are planning on a long day on the road.
-FirstAid Kit: Always travel with a first aid kit for your dog and self. Be sure to include a soft gauze wrap bandage and normal saline solution to clean a wound with as well.

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