Being a travel nurse means you have a sense of adventure. Spending 13 weeks in a new place can be a great time. To give travelers a sense of home some people travel with their pets. It is very common. However, the constant moving from place to place could take a toll on your pet. Being on long car rides or flying can cause them stress.

Looking for advice for moving to a new city with your pets? We’ve got you covered. We have compiled and curated some of our top tips to help make travel nursing with pets a much smoother undertaking. Follow these 20 tips to successfully travel with your pet as a travel nurse. Follow these 20 tips to successfully travel with your pet as a travel nurse.


The following tips to successfully travel or move with your pet for your next travel nursing job are all about pet safety.

1) Health Checks

The best thing you can do as a travel nurse is to plan. That goes for your pets too. The first of the 20 tips to successfully travel with your pet as a travel nurse is to schedule a checkup for your pet before you leave on your travel assignment. That means making sure vaccinations are up to date, and you have a copy of your pet’s health record.

2) Know Local Vets

It is a good idea to know the local vet. If you are not sure which vet to use, reach out to your current vet for a recommendation. It’s good to know where you can go in case anything happens.

3) Pet Identification and Documentation

No one likes thinking about the worst-case scenario. However, if you are traveling with a cat or a dog, it’s a good idea to consider getting them microchipped. That way if they are lost there is a good chance they can be reunited with you. 

At the very least, make sure they have a current ID tag that can be easily read. Another thing that you should do to successfully travel with your furry friend is to bring a recent picture of your pet. 

Remember that preparing all of these documents can take four months at most. So be sure to check the requirements of the state you are moving in. Necessary documentation you will likely have to prepare includes: 

  • Rabies certifications 
  • Health certificates
  • Spay or neuter certification
  • Vaccination records
  • Pet insurance
  • Veterinary inspection certificates
  • Pet license

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Finding A Pet Friendly Home

The following tips to successfully travel with your pet as a travel nurse are all about finding the right home for you and your pet.

4) Secure Pet Friendly Housing

This may seem like a no brainer as a travel nurse. However, this is something people forget to mention more times than not. It’s important you communicate with your recruiter before you start a travel assignment that you plan on bringing a pet. This will give your recruiter plenty of time to find you pet friendly housing options.

5) Research Pet Friendly Hotels

You might have your pet friendly 13 week housing all set but what about any necessary stops? When you map out your route, be sure you identify which hotels are pet friendly. Keep in mind that not all hotels are the same. If you are not sure, give them a call or reach out to your recruiter for help.

Safe Travels

The following tips to successfully travel with your pet as a travel nurse are all about traveling safely with your furry friend.

6) Have A Travel Kit

If your new travel nursing assignment requires you to travel for a great distance don’t forget to pack a travel kit for your pet. That should include their appropriate paperwork, necessary medication, food, and water.

7) Use A Carrier

You might want your pet to be free as you drive to your next travel nurse assignment. However, loose pets can cause distractions. It’s best to keep travelers and pets safe by keeping them in a crate or carrier as you drive to your new travel nurse assignment.

8) Travel Calm

Pets have a great way of reading us. They know when we are happy. They cheer us up when they are sad. They sense when we are getting worked up. As a result, make sure you keep calm when you travel. Don’t let the long trip get you upset. If you need to take a minute to unwind, do it. That way both you and your pet arrive at your new place peacefully.

9) Take Time For Breaks

If your drive between assignments is several hours long be sure you allow for breaks for your pet. If you have dogs, they might need to get out, stretch their legs, and go to the bathroom. If you have a cat, they might need a friendly pet and be taken out of their carrier. Don’t get in the zone and forget about your pet.

10) Pack Cleaning Supplies

This is one of those things that gets forgotten, so you run to the store to buy it. Having pet supplies is good to have during car trips between assignments, or at the home in case your pet has an accident.


The following tips to successfully travel with your pet as a travel nurse are all about preparing for your travel to your new assignment.

11) Plan Your Travel With Your Pet In Mind

The most common form of transportation between assignments for travel nurses is the car. However, if you have to fly make sure you review airline policies and TSA restrictions prior to your flight. Knowing that your pet will most certainly need to fly in a crate, you want to be sure they are comfortable in a crate. You also want to make sure they are not fed too early before the flight to not have any bathroom accidents.

12) Pack And Prepare

As a travel nurse, no doubt you have a few things you must have with you on assignments. Your pet is no different. Does your dog have a favorite bed? Does your cat have a favorite toy? Having these things will ease your pet’s anxiety. Another part of this tip to successfully travel with your pet as a travel nurse is to bring any necessary food. If your pet has dietary restrictions make sure they have enough food. It’s also a good idea to call places in your new city to see if they carry their food.

Make It Feel Like Home

The following tips to successfully travel with your pet as a travel nurse are all about what to do when you arrive at your new 13-week home.

13) Arrive A Few Days Early

Allowing your pet time to get acclimated is one of the tips to successfully travel with your pet as a travel nurse. During these days, your pet can get comfortable with their new surroundings. If you have a dog, take them on a walk to learn about the sights and smells of the neighborhood. Be sure to run a few errands, so your pet gets used to you being alone in your new home before you begin work.

14) Explore The Area

If your pet is able to be outside, let them explore their new home. If you have a dog, visit the nearby dog park. Find out which shops and restaurants are pet friendly. The better your pet understands its new surroundings makes the transition run smoothly.

Set Your Routine

The following tips to successfully travel with your pet as a travel nurse is all about setting a new routine.

15) Find a Doggy Daycare

If you are working long shifts on consecutive days it’s a good idea to find someone who can take care of your dog during the day. Some places even accept cats. This is a good idea so you can work stress free knowing your pet is having a good time while you are at work.

16) Practice Consistency

As a travel nurse, your routine can change when you begin a new assignment. Perhaps you used to work nights, and now you work days. Make sure if your new work schedule impacts your pets you begin the routine. That means if they get fed or taken out at a different time that they have time to adjust to the new routine.

17) Don’t Neglect Your Pet

As a travel nurse, your days are very busy. At the end of your shift, you probably want nothing more than to go home and relax. That’s good you should. But don’t forget about your pet. Take your dog out for a quick walk around the block. Get out your cat’s favorite toy and play with them. Pets provide great therapy as a travel nurse.

18) Find A Neighbor You Can Trust

Learning how to make new friends in a new city is important from a social perspective. However, making connections with your neighbors who you can call on if you need help with your pets is key. Having a neighbor you can trust to look in on your pet while you are out is another great tip to travel successfully with your pet as a travel nurse. As a travel nurse, your plans can change. Shifts can be interrupted, and you end up working longer than you anticipated. If that happens, you then have someone you can lean on to take Fido out or check on your cat.

After Your Assignment Ends

The following tips to successfully travel with your pet as a travel nurse are all about what to do after your assignment.

19) Go Home

You know the feeling. Homesick. Sometimes you just need to go home. Your pet feels that way too. If you have time between your next session, schedule time to go home. Allow your pet to get back to its home surroundings.

20) Pamper Your Pet

Take time to reward your pet for a job well done during your assignment. There are plenty of ways you can pamper your dog or your cat.

Host Healthcare Travel Nursing

Hopefully, you enjoyed this article. Be sure to check out our list of the best dog friendly cities for travel nurses. Host Healthcare offers an extensive list of travel nurse jobs. Call one of our friendly recruiters at (800) 585-1299. We are here to help you to get started.