It’s always better to leave your reptile at home rather than to try to take him with you on a trip. The supplies required for travel are extensive and can be a significant nuisance. More importantly, your reptile can easily become stressed by rapid changes in his environment which can cause him to refuse food, behave aggressively or withdraw from socializing.
Before heading out of town, consider the following steps to help keep him safe and healthy:
- Find a good pet sitter who is familiar with reptiles. Invite the sitter over to spend a few minutes with you and your pet before you leave. Time together will allow you to show the sitter any specific needs of your reptile.
- Snakes require very little day-to-day attention, but you should still plan to have someone check on him every couple of days. Feed him well before you leave and make sure he has an adequate water supply in a spill-proof container.
- If you have an insectivore, be sure to leave plenty of live insects, along with some extra cash for your sitter in case s/he needs to purchase additional food.
- Similarly, leave a good supply of vegetables if your pet is a herbivore.
- If your animal is social, find a sitter who will spend a few minutes with your pet each day.
Consider a few emergency preparations as well. Sometimes the power goes out!
- Post a note with caretaking instructions in case emergency personnel or neighbors need to enter your home while you are gone. Emphasize your reptile’s need for gentle heat.
- Include emergency contact information, including the phone number of a relative or neighbor who will be able to respond quickly if something happens.
- Maintain a sufficient water supply should your home lose power for a few days.
- Consider building a small travel kit should your reptile need to be evacuated.
- Keep a fire extinguisher handy.
Preparation is all it takes to make sure your reptile enjoys your trip as much as you do.