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France with a dog

(25 Posts)
ozzia Mon 17-Aug-15 21:26:33

Has anyone taken their dog to France, camping in particular? I really fancy going to southern France on the ferry and taking ddog but I have no idea how receptive France is to dogs as I've not been there since I was 9

Catzeyess Mon 17-Aug-15 21:36:04

The French love dogs smile

IFancyRichard Mon 17-Aug-15 21:43:07

A French restaurant will usually have a few dogs under the table has been my experience. They regard them far better than the UK.

The only thing I'd comment about is heat. If you're camping in a hot country with a dog make sure he can get shade and cool

ozzia Mon 17-Aug-15 21:43:08

That's good news smile

Can he go on beaches there do you know?

ozzia Mon 17-Aug-15 21:44:18

Oooh pleased to hear he can go in restaurants, was thinking we'd have to live on take aways.

We'd go out of season as I don't think we'd like it hot in the tent

maddy68 Mon 17-Aug-15 21:47:32

We take our dog to France ( and elsewhere in Europe) every year dogs are welcome everywhere you can take them to the poshest restaurants, on a tour bus. In a shop. It's so much easier than here

forgivenminds Mon 17-Aug-15 21:49:57

Not sure about France but a lot of Spanish sites have dog showers , the only issue I know people have with dogs is during the ferry you have to leave dog in the car and many dogs don't cope well but certain longer distance ferries have a specific time where you can go and check on your dog.

ozzia Mon 17-Aug-15 21:52:49

Maddy do you ask the restaurant beforehand just in case?

The ferry is my main concern. He's happy left when we're at work and he's at home (I set a camera to see what he gets up to) but he's not so good in the car when it's not moving.

MmeLindor Mon 17-Aug-15 21:59:02

We love France (or anywhere in EU really) with the dog - so much easier. You can take them pretty much everywhere, except supermarkets obviously.

We were camping (mobile home though) in Italy this summer, and no problem having the dog with us. In fact, they had doggy biscuits at the Gelateria for the four-legged friends.

The only limitation was that we couldn't take her to the pool, and we were very grateful that we'd booked a mobile home with air con, as it was almost 40C most days! She was fine for a few hours, and we walked her mornings and evenings.

Not sure about beaches - the ones we went to in Geneva area banned dogs in the summer. I expect the ones in France are the same.

MmeLindor Mon 17-Aug-15 22:00:44

We've never had a problem taking the dog into a restaurant. We don't bother asking!

Ferry - depends on which one you are doing. We do Hull to Rotterdam cause we are in Scotland, so overnight. You could do Eurotunnel, and that way you stay with dog in the car.

Lonecatwithkitten Tue 18-Aug-15 07:49:13

If you are going to Southern France there are additional diseases you need to protect your dog against beyond just rabies. You need to consider travel route and stops that comply with transport of animals act.

maddy68 Tue 18-Aug-15 07:58:19

No you don't need to ask to take digs into a restaurant. You will find there will already be a couple in there. They love dogs. Tbh I'm not sure about beaches as we read not to go to coastal places very often although I do rejeber taking him on one beach a few years ago

Collaborate Tue 18-Aug-15 08:28:37

DW and I were many moons ago having lunch at the renowned restaurant "Le Chantecler" in the Negresco Hotel in Nice. All the world famous film stars stayed there in the 60s, and it's still very opulent.

Mid course a waiter comes round with a knife to scrape the crumbs from your table. Table behind me, and old guy stops the waiter, reaches into his bag, and whips out a little white lap dog. He then proceeds to use said dog as a hoover, up and down the table licking the crumbs as it went. Classic.

ozzia Tue 18-Aug-15 10:46:15

Haha as someone with a larger dog I love the idea of a dog just sitting in a bag. I'm sure my labrador would be willing to be carried around all day but not sure my back would take it.

Euro Tunnel is a great idea, that passed my mind as we live Brighton way so near the Newhaven to Dieppe route. He would definitely prefer that though.

Wondering whether he might be better at the lakes and rivers than the beach.

Thanks for the tips about additional vaccinations.

So please my original "oh I would love to do that" idea is not unrealistic smile

ozzia Tue 18-Aug-15 10:49:46

For those who have visited before, where would you recommend we go? Thinking maybe southern france may be too far for the first trip. Just want a nice 4-6 days away, near water of some form, where we can camp and be relatively active and eat nice food

Catzeyess Tue 18-Aug-15 10:55:21

If you want to camp, venue holidays allow dogs (in the tents not mobile homes) and they have some quite nice sites

CalliopeTorres Tue 18-Aug-15 10:57:11

The Vendee. Just come back from two weeks away. We stayed near the coast, several lakes nearby and lovely weather. Couldn't recommend it more!

basildonbond Tue 18-Aug-15 12:22:14

We had a lovely week in Aquitaine with our dog last month. We rented a house 200m from the beach which meant we could go first thing for a lovely walk before it got too hot, then pop in and out all day and then have another run on the beach in the evening. Dogs were technically only allowed on the beach before 9 and after 7 and we tended to stick to that but mainly because we were so close and our dog doesn't cope brilliantly if it's too warm. There were loads of other dogs on the beach at all times and nobody batted an eyelid.

We also spent a couple of days at the lakes which meant he could have really good swims - the beaches had very big surf which meant he tended to paddle rather than swim!

He was very welcome everywhere and had a whale of a time!

ozzia Tue 18-Aug-15 12:37:51

Amazing, thank you. Any recommendations on websites for finding accommodation?

Basildon your dog looks gorgeous

basildonbond Tue 18-Aug-15 13:28:01

thanks ozzia smile

if you can speak French then try abritel.fr - it's the French version of homeaway but it has a lot more properties on than the English version

we filtered for dog friendly, close to the beach, dates and had a shortlist of about 20 houses in the area we wanted

basildonbond Tue 18-Aug-15 13:28:55

oh, and your dog needs to have had the rabies injection 3 weeks before travelling so you have to factor that in when getting the pet passport

ozzia Tue 18-Aug-15 13:31:07

I will test out to see if I can still read French, its been a while smile

OK, will make sure we vaccinate in plenty of time

MmeLindor Tue 18-Aug-15 20:10:50

Check the DEFRA website for details of the pet passport. You also need to have your dog checked by a local vet within 3 days of re-entering UK. If you don't have the rabies injection, or the tablets (I think it's worming tablets), then they won't let you back into the country. Or your dog would have to go into quarantine.

ozzia Wed 19-Aug-15 09:10:41

I would make 100% sure everything is in order, I would hate for him to end up in quarantine - he would be devastated as he's a big softy

AgathaF Wed 19-Aug-15 20:37:02

We take our dog to France around 5 or 6 times a year. The ferries are fine, you can leave him in your car on most of them, or some have an option of kenneling the dog if you'd prefer that. If he's in your familiiar car, on his own bed, with a toy or two and maybe a treat too, I'm sure he will be fine. Maybe try one of the shorter crossings first to see how he copes? We usually do an overnight crossing into Brittany or Normandy and ours is fine.

Vets in France are well used to the paperwork needed to bring your pet back, and many speak some english if you don't speak french, even in the less touristy areas. Just make sure that you phone or visit to book your appointment in plenty of time to ensure you get one within the relevant timescale to return to the UK.

The french people love their dogs and you will be welcomed into restaurants and tabacs/bars with your well-behaved dog. Most beaches have some areas for dogs. Getting to your destination is fine too, as the aires are usually away from the motorways and have lots of grassy areas to walk your dog.

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