What do you do with your dog when you travel?
If you are flying interstate, do you fly your dog with you? Or, like most people, do you leave him at home? If you are travelling across your suburb, do you take your dog in the car? Or, do you leave her at home?
Around our country (Australia), many dogs are left at home because we cannot take them on transport. Sure some airlines will accept pets- in the luggage hold. Trains and buses will not accept pets at all. Many people choose not to travel – nowhere farther than where we can transport our pet in the car. But what if we don’t drive or own a car? I speak to many people, often older or infirm, people who would like to visit friends or relatives but do not drive. They do not leave their homes often, because their pets are not welcome to travel with them.
Could new times of travel be emerging?
Two news items emerged today. The first, an anonymous one about the way animals are treated when flying. Read here. This story in the Canberra Times states that cages, containing pets, are routinely left outside where they are subjected to potentially harsh weather conditions and any other dangers an airport may subject them to. Staff are concerned. If this is the case, I am concerned too.
Could we possibly take our dogs on to the airplanes with us. I hear most Australians thinking “Never!” and yet, this is what dog owners in other countries do.
The second news story is a call for Sydney to allow dog on public transport, not just Assistance Dogs but ALL dogs. Read here. Dogs NSW and Sydney mayor Clover Moore support this idea. I have commented on this article in the Sydney Central, giving my support (as yet it is still to appear).
Could we soon see a day that dogs accompany us as we catch the train into the city, just as they do in most other major cities around the world?
Obviously taking our dogs on public transport requires a degree of caution. It may not suit all dogs. Some may be afraid. It is important for owners of young puppies to introduce their dogs to all forms of transport and make this socialisation experience as positive as possible. Also, picking up poo would be mandatory, as would preventing any anti-social behaviours such as aggression towards humans or other dogs and excessive barking or exhuberant behaviour.
OK that sounds like hard work for many owners and they may still choose to leave their pets at home while they travel. but for many, this would give us more freedom than we currently have. Freedom to explore our cities and our countries WITH our dogs.
Would you take your dog with you on transport?