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The Highcroft Blog

Tips for taking your pet on holiday

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

As important members of the family, it is becoming more and more popular to take pets away for a holiday. Whether you’re off on a ‘staycation’ in the UK or heading to sunnier climates abroad, there’s a lot to consider if you’re taking your pet along too. We advise that you start the process of organising your pet’s holiday at least six weeks before you go.

Staying in the UK

  • Make sure your accommodation is pet friendly and find out what facilities or policies they have in place before you book.
  • Research the area where you are going – is it suitable to take your dog on holiday? E.g. where you can go for walks, beaches, pubs or restaurants.
  • Check with your vet that your pet is healthy and safe to travel. If they need medication, take this with you. Ensure vaccinations, flea and worm treatments are up-to-date.
  • Ensure your pet is microchipped and that the contact details are up to date.
  • Find out where the nearest veterinary practice is, in case your pet requires emergency treatment.
  • If travelling by car, make sure your pet is safely restrained, has plenty of toilet breaks and access to water. If your pet suffers from travel sickness, speak to your vet beforehand for advice.
  • Take some of your pets ‘home comforts’ such as their own bed, toys and blankets.
  • Try to keep their routine as normal as possible whilst you are away. Change can be very stressful for animals, so it is important to continue their food and exercise regime as usual. Try not to leave them for prolonged periods of time in unfamiliar surroundings either.


Taking your pet abroad

If you are holidaying abroad you will also need to get a Pet Passport.

A Pet Passport can be issued by an LVI registered veterinary surgeon. During a Pet Passport appointment, the vet will perform a thorough pre-holiday health check to ensure your pet is fit for travel and ensure they are meeting all legal requirements.

The Pet Travel Scheme (PETS) states that, if travelling within Europe, your pet must be:

  • Microchipped
  • Vaccinated against rabies – this must be performed at least 21 days prior to re-entry in to the UK, so make sure you vaccinate your pet well in advance of your holiday.
  • Treated for Echinococcus multilocularis tapeworm – the treatment MUST be administered by a vet within 24 to 120 hours BEFORE re-entry to the UK. Ensure you have found a suitable veterinary practice abroad so that this can be performed.


Advised additional parasite control

Although it is not legally required, it is important to use a suitable tick prevention product on your pet. There are many different species of ticks abroad that do not reside in the UK and carry nasty diseases e.g. babesiosis.

Prevention against sandflies is also advised as they can carry the disease Leishmaniasis. Certain products will protect against both ticks and sandflies, and should be applied every two weeks. Start treatment at least 3 weeks before going abroad.

Leaving your pet in kennels

If you’re not taking your pet away and have decided to leave them in Kennels, or a Cattery, whilst you are on holiday, there are still factors you must consider.

  • All kennels and catteries require your pet to be fully vaccinated.
  • Dogs must also be vaccinated against Kennel Cough at least 3 weeks before their stay.
  • Make sure your pet has plenty of home comforts with them to make them feel more at ease.


If you would like to find out more information about taking your pet on holiday, or to book an appointment for a Pet Passport, call your usual surgery now.

We hope you and your pet have a fun and relaxing holiday this year!


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