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What To Do With Your Dog When You Go On Holiday

The kids have broken up for school now and many of us will have summer holidays planned.  If you are a dog owner, your decision on where to go may be somewhat constrained, or at the very least you will have to be taking your four-legged friend into account and decide what to do with them, whilst you are away, splashing around in the Costa Del Something.

So what are your choices for your Dog for Summer holidays?Below we discuss a few of these.

Leave them behind with friends or family?

This might be the perfect option if your dog is happy to go elsewhere and the people are equipped to look after your dog properly for the week or two you’re away.  If you are considering this option, satisfy yourself that your dog will feel at home there and there are unlikely to be an issues for them or the dog sitters in your absence.  For example:

  • Are the people use to dogs?
  • Will your dog be left home alone?
  • Do they have young children?
  • Will they have the time to look after your dog like you want them to?
  • Where will your dog sleep
  • What food will your dog eat
  • Will there be sufficient time for exercise and play?

Leave them behind in Dog Kennels?

 If you do not have a friends or family that are able to take your dog, whilst you are on holiday the likely best option to you might be to put them in a Dog Kennels.  There are several things to consider here.  The standard of kennels can vary, as can the prices you will pay to house your dog like this for a week or two. 

 I’d suggest, if possible you select a kennel on recommendation from someone you know.  I’d also make sure to visit the kennels prior to packing your dog off there, to both look around the kennels and talk to the people that run it.  Much like booking a holiday for yourself, make sure the kennels have everything you want for your dog.  You will enjoy your holiday a lot more if you have the peace of mind knowing your dog is having a great time too!

Leave them behind in a Dog Hotel!

They exist.  They really do although I’ve not come across them in Ireland as yet.  However, in Suffolk, in the UK, there is the House of Mutt which from-our review of their website is essentially a posh kennel and for £45 per night you can be safe in the knowledge they are in the lap of luxury whilst you are away yourself.

Take them with you – Staying in Ireland

If you are planning to holiday within Ireland, the logistics of taking your dog with you are considerably easier than if you were going abroad.  Within Ireland, it is going to be easier to find out if your intended accommodation is dog-friendly and whether there are suitable facilities for Mans Best Friend.  If you do a Google search there are plenty of websites to reference for good suggestions for pet friendly places, for example check out Ireland Guide or this post on Oh My Dog

Take them with you – Going abroad

Catching an aeroplane or boat with your beloved dog may be a daunting prospect but you love them, and surely they deserve some fun in the sun too right?  So, if you decide to take with this is what you need to know.

Every Irish pet that is brought out of Ireland to another EU Member State or re-enters Ireland must have an EU Pet Passport. In Ireland this is issued by private Vets directly to pet owners.  Also, the ISPCA stresses the importance of ensuring your pet is wearing a collar, an ID tag and is micro-chipped.

Since Ireland is a rabies-free country, you will be able to enter any other country with minimal paperwork and without quarantine but it’s possible that there could be issues coming back from certain countries where there is a high incidence.  More information can be found out here

Take them with you  –
Air travel

Airlines all have different rules on pet travel so you should always check this on their website before booking flights.

Ryanair, for example, does not carry animals on flights except for guide dogs and even then, only on certain routes.Aer Lingus do not allow animals on short haul flights, but they will carry them on most other flights within the cargo hold. KLM – the national airline of the Netherlands however, do allow cats and smaller dogs to transported in the cabin of the airplane providing there are in a travel kennel/ pet travel bag.

Longer journeys are of course more tiring and stressful for both human and dog travelers, so this should be considered when deciding to take a flight. This can be compounded by travel to and from the airport and any delays you may encounter.

Take them with you  –Boat travel

An alternative to air travel is by boat.  This may be an ideal option if you or your dog are afraid of flying.  Boat travel can be a much less stressful way to travel as you can keep your dog in its familiar surroundings of your car or motorhome.  Brittany Ferries and Irish Ferries both have very useful sections on their websites which provide a wealth information for people intending to travel on board the ships with dogs.

In summary

Summer holidays can be fun for you Dogs too!  In this post we’ve discussed both leaving them behind you and taking them with you and of course this is your call. Knowing your dog and knowing your options will make your decision a little bit easier.  Personally, as our Dog is very much part of the family, finding a suitable location that is not only dog friendly but dog loving is imperative to me.  Going away without them is simply not an option.

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