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Old 23-08-13, 20:50
Cornwall Van Conversions's Avatar
Cornwall Van Conversions Cornwall Van Conversions is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Stoke Climsland, Cornwall.
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Default Re: Taking the dog abroad

Processionary caterpillars further south are pretty dodgy as well as the sandflies.
You've also got to be breed aware. Rottweilers, mastiffs and English Bull Terriers are a no no in some countries.
Staffies are ok most places. Even if your dog passes a vet test you are obliged to register them with the local authority EVERY time you stop. A lot of campsites will refuse all those breeds. Stupid really as the only dog I've ever been bit by was a Jack Russell!!
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Old 24-08-13, 09:28
TonkaToo TonkaToo is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Wimborne
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Default Re: Taking the dog abroad

I've got two Rottweilers and when I read into travelling overseas into Europe with them there were some very strange considerations; in addition to having them muzzled in public places (I can understand that one) apparently I had to get permission from the Mayor of where I was in France!

I'm really not quite sure how that one works and as a result it's put me off a bit! I'd be reluctant to stop en route for fear of breaking the rules, as I'm very aware that the rules for Brits are different to the rules for everyone else when in France! Also, my French speaking is not fluent enough to deal with a potential crisis!! Family in France just laughed when I told them and obviously they would be able to sort out everything for when I'm with them, it's just the bit in between, as they're near Toulouse and that's a long old schlepp in one go with two dogs on board!

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Old 24-08-13, 10:07
van quish van quish is offline
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Default Re: Taking the dog abroad

Cheers for the info Myloxyloto and TonkaToo, i'll add this to the OP
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Old 16-09-13, 08:35
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Buggerlugs67 Buggerlugs67 is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Zummerzet
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Default Re: Taking the dog abroad

Great thread with lots of sound advice.
I retire from the forces very soon and I'm planning on a months trip through France and into Spain, just me and my dawg. The thing is he's a Bull Mastiff, he's 9 years old (tomorrow) and the softest thing you could ever wish to meet. I'm concerned about falling foul of the gendarmes, gardia as I think he would struggle with a muzzle, particularly in any kind of heat. Should I think twice about taking him?

Oh, and he snores like jet taking off and farts for competitively for England. He's still my best mate though.

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Old 16-09-13, 17:39
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chriscaravelle94 chriscaravelle94 is offline
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Default Re: Taking the dog abroad

they do learn to emulate us, don't they
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Old 03-10-13, 12:18
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Buggerlugs67 Buggerlugs67 is offline
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Default Re: Taking the dog abroad

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Old 03-10-13, 13:20
legend99 legend99 is offline
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Default Re: Taking the dog abroad

Thank you for the info. really useful.
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Old 03-10-13, 15:15
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shaunr68 shaunr68 is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Sheffield
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Default Re: Taking the dog abroad

Excellent information. Our dog has been abroad a few times now, I think he has been to 11 countries so far. We plan on going further afield in the future (Russia, Ukraine, Turkey, Morocco etc) and things look to be a little more difficult if you travel outside of the EU and other "listed" countries but hopefully the passport and innoculation arrangements will be further simplified over coming years.

Our van is petrol engined with an LPG system so isn't allowed on the Chunnel, so perhaps I can offer some advice on using the ferries.

As mentioned earlier, generally the pet stays in the vehicle and this isn't a problem on shorter routes as he is in familiar surroundings. We have travelled Dover-Dunkirk, Dover- Calais and Holyhead-Dublin and had no qualms about leaving him in the van for an hour or two. We usually find him curled up fast asleep on the passenger seat.

On many of the longer routes you also have to leave the pet in the vehicle for the duration, though you will usually be allowed access to the car deck at set times for brief exercise breaks. I have been looking into options for a visit to Norway and the Harwich-Esbjerg (DK) route seems to be the most direct route but I think it would be too stressful, I really don't think it would be fair to have him locked alone in the van for the best part of 19 hours.

Some routes have kennels which although not offering familiar surroundings, can be visited round the clock. Many owners apparently set up camp in the kennel area! There is also an exercise deck nearby with a hose and bins.

Some operators now offer pet friendly cabins, this really is the way forward for continental dog travel. We managed to book a pet friendly cabin on the Portsmouth-Bilbao route with Brittany Ferries last Easter and it was a much less stressful experience for all. The special cabins are close to the exercise deck and your dog is limited to this deck, your cabin and the corridor in between. Bear in mind that there are a very limited number of pet friendly cabins so book early!

You will usually pay a fee each way for the pet and it isn't always cheap. For example, last year we paid DFDS around 100 to take 2 adults and a 2.5 ton van from Dover to Dunkirk and back again, and an extra 60 (30 each way) for a 7 kilo dog! Irish Ferries from Holyhead-Dublin on the other hand don't charge for the pet and you don't even have to declare them if they are to remain in the vehicle.

As you can see the procedures and costs vary enormously across different routes and operators so check on the website for their pet travel arrangements and read the small print in detail. You might need to muzzle the animal when moving through public areas, there may be strict size limits for the kennels and so on.

Finally, we have had absolutely no problems finding an English-speaking vet, although it is arrogant to assume that a foreign vet will speak English these are educated people and usually do, though it is polite to at least instigate the conversation with a few words in the local lingo. Just keep an eye out for a veterinary surgery in the last week of your travels. I have the details of two great vets we have used at Annecy, France and Sagunto in Spain if anyone wants them.


Last edited by shaunr68; 03-10-13 at 15:24.
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Old 11-10-13, 17:05
Rogbik Rogbik is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Kent
Posts: 232
Default Re: Taking the dog abroad

Just a quick heads up on this thread,
When you get your pet passport stamped and signed by the vet
I know this sounds a bit pedantic but we have just returned from 4 days in France,
we had the worming / pet passport done at a vets in the UK before leaving,
at the ferry check in it was noted that the "time" of the worming tablet being given had not been recorded.
We were lucky, being a day inside the 5 day limit meant we were ok to travel,
If the weather had been good and we had stayed out another night it would have been a different story.
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Old 19-11-13, 08:39
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Wazshaw Wazshaw is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Worcester
Posts: 294
Default Re: Taking the dog abroad

Looking for a vet to see in France before you return? The website we used was the French yellow pages,

By inserting 'Veterinaires' in the left search box, the town or city in the right search box, and then click on 'Trouver' button, this will give names, numbers, and maps of all vets in that area.
Click on the map on the right hand side of the results page, and you can zoom in to see the locations of all the vets. We found the vets we spoke to all spoke English and were extremely helpful. We Also took our own worming tablets as the vet had no problems with that, and the vet in the Jura Mountains charged us €29 for his service.
Another useful website with lots of info for other countries is,

Last edited by Wazshaw; 19-11-13 at 08:43. Reason: More info
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