In just under a weeks time, myself & Piper will be setting sail for Europe. If you’ve never done it before, travelling abroad with your pet can be a little daunting. We’ve put together a guide on what to make sure you’ve done before you start your journey.
- Get your dog’s passport, sounds obvious right? If you’re applying for a new passport, I’d recommend getting it at least a month before you’re due to travel. To get the passport, you need to book an appointment with your vet. Prices vary, but typically you’d be looking at somewhere between £60 – £120. Your dog will have to have a rabies vaccination & you have to wait 21 days after the vaccination before you can travel. Be aware though, that come the 29th of March (yes, Brexit) European travel with a pet could change. In the event of a no deal brexit, vets are recommending that you also acquire a rabies titre test (blood test) & potentially a few more checks, to ensure you’re still ok to travel. If this applies to you, you can find much more info on the topic here. Always seek advice from your vet if you are unsure.
- Book your appointment for worming treatment for your return to the UK. Every dog must be given tapeworm treatment within a specific time period when reentering the UK. It must be given no less than 24 hours but no more than 120 hours (5 days) before you enter the UK. If your only going for a short trip (I.e less than 5 days) you can arrange for your vet at home to give the treatment before you travel. However if you’re travelling for longer, it’s recommended you find a vet abroad beforehand and book an appointment. If travelling from France, particularly Calais, there are a number of English speaking vets near the ferry/eurotunnel terminals. Be aware though, these will charge a premium for the privilege of the convenience. You could probably find a vet to do it cheaper further in land, if you’re prepared to potentially overcome a language barrier (most French speak basic English though). Remeber to take your pet’s passport to this appointment, as your vet has to sign the passport in order for the treatment to be validated.
- Update your dog’s microchip details. One of the requirements for obtaining a passport, is that your pet has a microchip. When you log on to your microchip provider’s database, you can usually add a holiday address. I would recommend doing this, so should in the awful event you became separated from your dog, you can be reunited that bit easier. I’d also making sure your mobile numbers (for the phones you’ll have with you whilst travelling) are up to date.
- Ensure you have some up-to-date photos of your dog on your phone, clearing showing what they look like from a variety of angles (eg. standing, close up of face, any noticeable features/markings). Should you ever become separated from your dog, having this within easy access on your phone will help a great deal in showing people what your pet looks like.
- Have a special ID tag made. Myself & Piper are travelling to the Netherlands, so I’ve had an ID made for our trip which on one side has my info on in English, and the other side in Dutch. Try to seek advice from a native speaker about the translation, if I’d have trusted google translate the Dutch on Piper’s tag woudln’t have made sense. It’s a good idea to put the UK code at the front of your number (+44) as the chances are if anyone ever needs to call you, they’ll be doing so off a foreign phone. I’d also recommend putting the address of your holiday cottage. We always use Engraving Studios for our tags, as they always great quality & the customer service is friendly.
- Find out if there are any “dog rules” in your destination country. For example when in France, you may be required to muzzle your dog if you use public transport. Knowing things like this prior to your trip will make things so much easier. Some countries have different “banned breeds” to the UK, so worth checking that too.
- Find the nearest vet to where you’re staying. This will come in handy if you ever had an emergency and need to seek veterinary care fast. Google search the nearest vet to the address of where you’re staying & save the number and address of the practise in your phone, prior to travelling. It’ll save you having to spend precious time googling/trying to find WiFi when you need to look after your dog.
- Inform your insurance company. If your pet is insured, it’s always a good idea to inform them of any foreign travel which you plan to take. Check your policy wording regarding how the insurance company deals with foreign travel & claims from abroad. It’s better to know before hand, than potentailly get a shock if you ever needed to use it. I’d recommend making a note of your policy number & any other relevant information you’d need, should the unfortunate event arise and you need to make a claim whilst away. Adding a blank claims form to your travel documents would be a good idea.
We hope you found this useful. Don’t forget to let us know if you’ve got any foreign trips planned.
Thanks for reading!
E & P x