Taking the Trauma out of Travel

Pet passports are meaning more dogs than ever are jet-setting around the world. But the rules around that travel are complicated and often changing. Teeny Scott Barber offers some reassuringly no-nonsense British travel tips.

  • Only one dog can travel per crate. However well you get on, you wouldn’t want to share a seat with your neighbour for a 12 hour flight – and neither would your dogs.
  • Your dog will need a Pet Passport in order to fly in Europe. Although getting one is a simple process, get it underway early – these things are never as speedy as you’d like. Some countries require rabies certification which can take up to a month to sign off.
  • If it’s possible, get your travel crate ahead of the journey so your dog can get used to it at home first. Home smells are always comforting when zipping around at 30,000 ft (with or without an airplane!)
  • There are a limited number of spaces on airplanes for dogs so book early to get the date you want.
  • Some airlines and countries allow very very tiny dogs in secure crates that fit under the seat to travel in the cabin. The vast majority are in cargo – unless you have a very good reason. And a doctor’s note. And a sympathetic airline. And… (You get the gist, travelling in the cabin is nigh on impossible). Even more so to and from the UK where cabin flying is restricted to Service Dogs only.
  • Dog check in/out is a lot longer than people check in/out. Don’t imagine it’s always best to travel on the same flight. Or, indeed, possible.
  • Brachycephalic dogs are heavily restricted on where and when they can travel. If you’ve got a Bulldog, you need to be flying in winter.
  • A lot of the events associated with travelling are stressful in themselves (moving house, packing, getting to the airport in time, remembering your passport…) so it may be better to schedule your dog’s travelling quite a way apart from your own if that’s possible. Make use of the House of Mutt (or your equivalent, obviously!) to enable your dog’s travel to be as stress-free as possible.
  • Travel light – there’s no place for toys, blankets, goodies in the travel crates. Even having a collar and lead attached to the outside of the crate is too much for some shippers to bear.
  • Try and relax. And if that’s tricky give teeny@houseofmutt.com a call and she’ll arrange it all for you.
 

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