Personal Success: Have Pets, Will Travel

There are times when it makes more sense to bring a pet along on a trip than to find a reputable pet-sitter or boarding facility. But it is important to be well informed as well as to make the trip as comfortable as possible for you, the pet, and your fellow travelers. And while some may be interested in taking birds, hamsters, or snakes along, there is the most information available on—not to mention hospitality towards—cats and dogs. So feel free to get the four-legged kids ready to go as more and more destinations welcome them with open arms—and even a few extra goodies. Here is a small sample of resources for your next trip with a pet.

Universal Sport Bag Pet Carrier
This is the ultimate in pet transportation systems, offering a set of bags that attach together and to a wheeled trolley to maximize convenience. The pet carrier bag itself is designed to transport dogs, cats, iguanas, ferrets, rabbits, and other small animals. The bag is constructed of soft, hypoallergenic materials and includes a safety leash and straps that make it configurable for use as a handbag, shoulder bag, backpack, or for secure car travel. $239.99 www.dog-bag.it/usb/usbengc.html

Globetrotting Pets: An International Travel Guide
Dr. David J. Forsythe’s tome covers 230 countries around the world and their pet policies. Forsythe includes pertinent contact information for each country’s tourist offices and embassies as well as other resources such as tourism Web sites, information on pet identification, traveling with more unusual pets, quarantine issues, plus pet travel forms. When purchased from the Globetrotting Pets Web site, the book comes with a free e-book, which can be downloaded and printed immediately. $21.95 www.globetrottingpets.com

W Hotels PAW (Pets Are Welcome) Program
W Hotels have put together a remarkably comprehensive pet package for dogs and cats. They ask that visitors provide a pet’s name, breed, size, age, and weight when booking a room; the hotel provides a welcome package upon check-in with a toy, treat, pet tag, clean-up bags, and informational letter; and staffers set-up the guest room with a W pet bed, food and water bowl with a mat, a “Pet-in-room” door sign, and a turndown treat. Serious services include a required waiver, veterinary services, and dog-sitters and walkers; less serious services include birthday cakes, toys, and grooming services. $25 Above room rate, plus a $100 cleaning fee www.starwoodhotels.com/whotels/index.html