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Travelling with a Dog

28.6.2019

Responsible pet ownership guide

Going on holiday with your dog needn’t be a hassle – it’s all about being well-prepared. Once you’ve decided on your destination and mode of transport, you can focus more on the details. Important documents such as your dog’s pet passport must be up to date, as well as any vaccinations required under the entry regulations of your travel destination. Regardless of your travel plans, your dog must have a microchip and be registered.

Planning 

It’s advisable to start planning well in advance. Draw up a checklist of dog-related issues that need consideration at this stage. These might include

  • the entry requirements of your destination country (additional vaccinations, quarantine regulations)
  • potential health risks for dogs in the area you’re travelling to (e.g. parasites) 
  • country-specific requirements for dogs in public places (e.g. taking your dog into restaurants, hotels, on to beaches, muzzling on public transport)
  • likely weather conditions
  • transport conditions (if you’re not travelling by car)
  • equipment and supplies needed during the journey (e.g. food, water, canine seat belt, first-aid kit)
  • timely booking of accommodation and transport (if not by car)  

Preparing your dog

Whether you will be travelling by car, ferry, plane or train, you should prepare your dog for every eventuality. This may include, among other things:

  • getting your dog used to being in a dog crate/carrier 
  • getting your dog used to longer journeys
  • familiarisation with the chosen mode of transport

FOUR PAWS advises

against air travel with a dog unless the animal will be allowed in the cabin. 

In case of emergency

Even on holiday, dogs can fall ill or have accidents. That’s why you should take the following items with you on your trip:

  • a first-aid kit 
  • a list of veterinary clinics along your route (if travelling by car) 
  • a list of vets and veterinary clinics in your holiday resort 
  • any medications that might be useful (e.g. for travel sickness)
  • if your dog takes regular medication, make sure you have enough for the whole trip

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Your dog’s travel bag

This should contain everything your four-legged friend will need on the trip, including: 

  • important documents (EU pet passport, vaccination certificates)
  • collar with your dog’s name tag and owner contact details
  • water and food bowls
  • enough food, treats, chew bones
  • favourite toy
  • favourite blanket or basket
  • first-aid kit
  • poop bags
  • muzzle (if mandatory on your chosen mode of transport or in the country you’re travelling to)
  • insect repellent

 

The earlier you start planning and preparing for your trip, the more relaxed you and your dog will be when you begin your journey together.