They’re man’s best friend or your cuddle buddy, so why not take your pets along? Click here for important information on bringing your pet into the U.S. from Canada (http://www.cdc.gov/importation/pdf/dogimportation_us-canada.pdf).
Pet Identification Tags. Make a “travel” pet tag that includes the pet’s name, your address, and phone number.
Pet photos. Bring extra pictures of your pet with you—just in case your pet wonders off to explore the new surroundings.
Travel Containers. Allow your pet to become comfortable and familiar with the container it’ll be traveling in. Include comfort items for your pet, like it’s favorite chew toy and a comfortable towel to lay on. At the very least, make sure there is an absorbent layer in case the water dish tips over.
Sedation. The American Veterinary Medical Association recommends not sedating your pet for a plane ride. Altitude induces sleepiness and can cause respiratory and cardiovascular problems.
See your veterinarian. Some airlines require a certificate issued by a licensed vet that states that your pet meets all local, state, and federal requirements and regulations. Often times, this certificate needs to be within 10 days of your flight.
Pet Sitters. If you’re unable to bring your pet along, ask family members, friends, or neighbors to care for your pet. It’d be best if the person will allow the pet in their home, instead of coming over to check on it. If you’re unable to find someone to sit, try a professional pet sitting company. Some companies have a facility that you bring your pet to, while others come to your home to care for your pet. Sometimes, pet sitters are associated with house sitters. Ask pet sitters for references and if they have insurance available.
Bringing your pet in a car/truck. Bring enough food and water for the entire trip. Check water levels each time you stop for gas. Make sure nothing will fall on the kennel or animal directly. (i.e., luggage, etc.). Make sure your animal has enough fresh air and is out of the sun. Create a barrier between the animal and the driver, so the driver won’t be distracted. In the Southern US, the temperature inside the car can raise 45 degrees F inside of the first hour; so don’t leave your pet unattended.
Bringing your pet in an airplane. Airlines charge for pets. The regulations on pet travel may vary by airline. Be sure to visit the website and/or call your airline to review the rules.
While Sarasota offers public transportation in the form of taxis & buses, and many private options including UberX and UberXL, it is likely that you will want a car during your stay. Renting a car long-term can be expensive. The SRQ Duo recommends either driving here or having your car shipped. You may want to consider taking the Auto Train down as well. Click here for more information on Amtrak’s Auto Train (https://www.amtrak.com/auto-train).
Shipping your car to Sarasota by truck carrier. The process is simple and relatively affordable. You start by filling out some paper work and then dropping off the car to the company or having them pick it up at your house. The company then transports the car to Sarasota where you pick it up or they drop it off in your driveway (it varies depending on the company and level of service). Most companies offer two ways for your car to travel: in an enclosed container or on an open carrier truck vehicle (like ones that carry new cars). The time frame for transporting your car depends on a few constraints: distance, weather, and time of year. In general, shipping times are North to SRQ 5-8 days, Midwest to SRQ 4-6 days, West Coast to SRQ 7-14 days. Pricing is based on distance, size of car (SUVs cost more), weight of car, functionality of car (if car doesn’t work or even roll, additional fees will be added), additions to car (like camper shells), current fuel prices,
Outside. Bring in all lawn furniture, ladders, and stackable boxes. Unhook all outside hoses so that they don’t freeze. Trim all plants and bushes so all doors and windows are easily seen from the street. Empty trashcans = empty house. Put trashcans inside or have a neighbor use yours each week.
Lights. Install motion light detectors in the front and back of your house. Position the lights so it’ll detect anyone approaching from the side of your house. Install the lights up high so someone cannot unscrew the bulb or block the light. Make sure your light bulbs are working before you leave. Use a timer for lights, radios, and televisions. Time each to turn on randomly in different rooms throughout the entire day.
Some police departments have vacation check programs. Notify them, and generally they will do a routine check of the house. While some will only drive by and look for suspicious activity, some will get out of their vehicles and inspect the grounds looking for any break-ins. If contact information is left with the police, they can phone the homeowners if there has been a break-in or disturbance. Upon return, they will usually send a card, listing dates and patrol times.
Whether friend holds your mail, the post office holds your mail, or a company forwards your mail, it’s important that you RECEIVE your mail! Don’t forget to contact important companies with your new change of address.
and the level of service provided (door-to-door service is more expensive than terminal-to-terminal service). Enclosed transporting is more expensive than open vehicle transporting. Importing your car from Canada or other international destinations adds to the timing and pricing. Although pricing may vary based on the above factors, a shipment from Massachusetts to Florida would typically cost you about $1200-$2000.
Phone (941) 444-0436
Water. Turn off your hot water heater, water to your washing machine, and water to your dishwasher. If any of the connections fail on these appliances, it could flood your entire house. Move items off the floor and/or away from basement windows in case of natural or appliance flooding.
Discard any perishable items in your refrigerator and freezer. Have someone check periodically to make sure the power doesn’t go out. It’d be quite unpleasant to return to a refrigerator full of rotting food!
Store valuables in places or other locations that a burglar could not access. (i.e., take jewelry to a safe-deposit box, lock computers in closets, hide keys to extra cars, etc.) Be sure to remove all valuables from sight, especially if a thief looks in through your windows. Take photographs or videos of all expensive items. This is helpful for both the police and the insurance agency, to identify the stolen goods. Turn the ringers off on any telephones, so thieves can’t hear if no one is answer the phone. Don’t leave a message on the answering machine that tells callers you’re out-of-town. Instead, say you’re away from the phone and you’ll get back to them.
Windows. Make sure that all windows are closed and locked before leaving. In basement windows, install a metal grate or a steel bar in window track to deter burglars. Don’t draw all of the curtains and/or blinds closed. This signals that no one is home.
Garage. Lock all doors leading into the house. This way, if someone opens the garage door, they’ll be unable to gain access to the house. Cover garage windows with blinds so people can’t see valuables in the garage. Also, install a padlock on track garage doors, so thieves can’t use a crowbar to open them. Unplug your automatic garage-door opener.
Services. Arrange for a neighbor to park their car in your driveway, check for extra newspapers, fliers, and packages. Give your neighbor your contact information. Arrange for someone to mow your lawn and shovel your walkways. Give your household plants to a friend or family member to water and take care of. Hold your mail or have a mail service send it to you at your snowbird destination. Hold newspaper delivery a few days before leaving to ensure that it stops. Stop your trash service.