Pets with Diabetes Logo   Traveling with a Diabetic Pet


Traveling with a diabetic pet is possible. But you need to take some extra precautions and be prepared.
  • You will need to pack all of your pet's regular supplies, plus the diabetes supplies.  This includes special food, insulin, syringes, testing equipment, and Karo syrup or some other glucose supply. Some people use honey packets.
  • Take extra supplies. You may lose something, or the bottle of insulin may break. The same brand of syringes or insulin may not be available, or you may not be able to get an immediate replacement.
  • Keep the supplies where they are easy to get to. If you are flying, don't pack them in your luggage - it may get lost or your luggage might get very hot or cold. Put the supplies in your carry-on bag.
  • You may want to increase how often you monitor your pet (behavioral observation, urine glucose tests, or blood glucose tests). Increased stress, changes in activity or eating, or excitement may effect your pet's diabetes.
  • Know the location of the nearest vet.
  • Take your vet's phone number. You may need to contact your vet for advice.
  • Your pet should have an identification tag that says "DIABETIC". You can have a phone number or "if found, take to vet" engraved on the tag.
  • If it will be hot when you are traveling, you need to prevent the insulin from becoming too warm.  An insulated container and a cold pack work well. If the cold pack is frozen, do not let the insulin touch the cold pack - the insulin might freeze. Wrap the insulin (or the cold pack) in a towel. Several insulated containers are designed especially for insulin - check your local pharmacy. A site with a product just for keeping insulin cool during a day-trip is Medicool, Inc.
  • You may want to take copies of some of your pet's veterinary records with you. This might be useful if you are going on an extended vacation or are moving to a new home.
  • Ask your vet for other tips.  Sedation may be useful for pets who don't travel well.

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Updated June 2002
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