Going on a foreign adventure with your dog can be really exciting but there's lots to think about before you go.
Passport - A passport is issued for travel within the European Union (EU).
Rabies - dogs must be vaccinated against rabies before they travel from the UK to EU countries. They must have the vaccination at least 21 days before they travel.
Outside the EU - you'll have to do your research if you're travelling to a country outside the EU. Different countries will have different import requirements. This can include blood tests and quarantine. Further information can be obtained from DEFRA.
Worming - when returning to the UK, your dog will need to be given a worming tablet by a Veterinary Surgeon 24 to 120 hours before you arrive back. It is reasonable to worm one month after your return home.
Parasites - make sure your dog is up to date with their flea and worm treatment before they travel. There are some parasites that are more prevalent or only present in Europe, compared to the UK. Heartworm and other Dirofilaria are transmitted by mosquitoes and is present in Europe. Monthly use of Milbemax will help to prevent disease.
Diseases transmitted by ticks include Bartonellosis, Babesiosis, Hepatozoonosis and Ehrlichiosis amongst others. Monthly Nexgard use and a daily check of your dog to identify the presence of ticks and removal using a tick remover will help to prevent infection.
Leishmania is transmitted by Sandflies. It is common in Southern Europe. Risk of infection is reduced by using a repellent collar such as a Scalibor (dogs only), vaccination (CaniLeish™), and keeping your dog indoors at dawn and dusk when sandflies are active.
Milbemax, Nexgard, Scalibor collars and CaniLeish vaccinations are avaliable at Bond Street Veterinary Clinic.
New Surroundings - have the telephone number of your closest Veterinary Surgeon in case of emergencies. Your dog may be disorientated by unfamiliar surroundings, so make sure their microchip details are up to date, and the tag has your current name, address and correct phone number. Remember both are legal requirements. Take plenty of your dogs' normal food with you when you travel. It may not be available abroad.
Different Climates - Your dog will not enjoy sweltering sunshine quite as much as you might. Walk your dog in the early morning or late at night to avoid the higher temperatures. When travelling make sure your dog has constant access to water and schedule in regular toilet breaks.
Flying with your dog - Your dog will need a fitness to fly certificate before taking off which will need to be issued by your Veterinary Surgeon. Check with your airline that they are licensed to carry dogs, and whether they are allowed to travel in the cabin. The hold is pressurised and for this reason some airlines exclude brachycephalic breeds such as Boxers, Pugs and Bulldogs. Dogs have to stay in a crate while they are in the hold. When purchasing a crate, make sure it meets airline guidelines. The dog should have room to stand and turn. Familiarise the dog with the crate before you fly. Your airline company will be able to provide you with information regarding an appropriate crate size.