While some people will put their dog into a kennel for their holiday, or ask friends and family to look after it, many do choose to take their pets with them on a trip. How you go about bringing your dog with you on a break will depend if you’re going overseas or not, as well as on whether you can find accommodation like a dog friendly holiday cottage that can allow you to keep a dog during a stay.
If taking dogs overseas, there are a number of things that you need to focus on; for the majority of destinations you’ll need to get your dog microchipped, while also ensuring that they’ve had rabies vaccinations. Dogs will also need to have a valid pet passport, as well as a vet certificate stating that they’re healthy. For countries outside the EU, blood tests and records of vaccinations will be needed; without them, dogs returning to the UK can end up being quarantined for six months.
Alternatively, if staying in the UK, you can take advantage of a wide range of holidays and different types of accommodation. For example, pet friendly cottages around the UK can be ideal if you want your dog to have plenty of space and areas to run around in. Most cottages will have areas for dogs to sleep, as well as gardens and access to paths and beaches where dogs can be walked. Locations like the Mendip Hills, Cornwall, and National Parks can be excellent destinations for exploring with dogs.
However, there may be some rules and regulations for pets set down by cottage owners; for example, dogs may only be allowed on the ground floor of a property, and not permitted to sleep in bedrooms. Similarly, owners are generally expected to clean up any mess, and ensure that dogs are n’t too noisy if there are neighbours close by. Insurance for pet friendly cottages might also be higher as a result of the risk of dogs damaging furniture.
Another option to take when it comes to holidaying with your dog is to find a campsite that accepts pets – these can be in any part of the UK or Europe, but may have varying rules over how dogs can be kept and looked after. Owners are expected to clean up after dogs, and to find safe sleeping areas where dogs won’t get out and cause problems with other guests. Many campsites will, though, feature dog walking areas and recommended paths and routes for walks.
Wherever you travel with your dog, always speak to your vet about any health dangers that may be experienced during a holiday. Moreover, when driving, make sure that you have plenty of stops to let your dog run around, and keep fresh water in the car so that your dog doesn’t get dehydrated. Microchipping your dog is also recommended if you don’t want to run the risk of it escaping and becoming lost during a trip.
Cathy John has traveled most of the UK with her Labrador. She recommends Cottages direct if you are looking for a dog friendly holiday cottage in the UK.