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Subject Topic: Brittany ferry crossings with a dog.
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Message posted by bofs on 03/10/2017 at 11:24pm
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We have just adopted an 8 year old bearded collie rescue dog and would like to take her to France with us next year. As our caravan is stored in Western France we generally use the Portsmouth to Caen crossing but we're not sure about leaving the dog in the car for such a long time. Another option might be the Portsmouth to Le Havre overnight crossing with a pet-friendly cabin. Has anyone used either of these crossings with a dog and could you share your experiences/give any advice? Thank you.

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Message posted by derekcbr on 04/10/2017 at 8:27am
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We've used the Portsmouth/Caen crossing a number of times with our Border Terrior. She has to stay in the car for the six hour crossing but if you see the staff you can arrange to go and see your dog at about half way. This can either be good or bad! It puts yor mind at ease but it may upset the dog that's your decision. Our dog was just fine as she just settled down for a good sleep and did not seem stressed at all. You can also mention it to your vet who can advise if your dog can have some calming medication but we've never bothered and you will find there are others who are taking dogs too and I am sure your dog will be ok.
Sometimes I think we tend to put our human feelings on our dogs. They cope much better than we think. Enjoy your hols with your dog I can highly recommend

Message posted by adrian06 on 04/10/2017 at 9:28am
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Hi We've used the crossings to Ouistreham on a number of ocassions. Non-spill water bowl and a cheap battery powered fan keeps them happy. They seem to sleep (evidence their eyes!) and are quite OK when we go down to them. We once, and once only, made the mistake of going down mid-voyage. This disturbed them and we've never done it since. There are, sadly very poor facilities at Portsmouth for exercising dogs, best to stop off well before you get to the port, same applies to Ouistreham.

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Message posted by Berriow on 04/10/2017 at 9:29am
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A third alternative would be the Portsmouth to St Malo ferry which has dog kennels on board.

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Message posted by Val A on 04/10/2017 at 9:36am
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We've used the pet friendly cabins, but with our cat. No problems, and eveb got a fold-up water bowl, and a.bag of treats. Definitely would recommend. Our cat has a litter tray but there is an area.you can walk your dog.

Message posted by Robbie on 04/10/2017 at 10:37am
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I have used the Le Havre crossing on two occasions and it is ideal for my two dogs. Unfortunately, one of my Cockers has Epilepsy and needs his medication regularly, so the dog friendly cabins are ideal.

Message posted by bofs on 04/10/2017 at 10:47am
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Many thanks for your replies and reassurance. For those using the Portsmouth to Caen crossing, did you use daytime or overnight crossings? Also, is it correct that your dog has to wear a muzzle at the ports?

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Message posted by bofs on 04/10/2017 at 10:48am
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Quote: Originally posted by Berriow on 04/10/2017
A third alternative would be the Portsmouth to St Malo ferry which has dog kennels on board.



Thanks Berriow - didn't realise that.

Message posted by saxo1 on 04/10/2017 at 11:53am
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Quote: Originally posted by bofs on 04/10/2017
Many thanks for your replies and reassurance. For those using the Portsmouth to Caen crossing, did you use daytime or overnight crossings? Also, is it correct that your dog has to wear a muzzle at the ports?



The rules are dogs must be muzzled,I have yet to see one muzzled.
I have crossed with my dog in excess of 20 times and have never muzzled her,it may be different onboard.
saxo1

Message posted by clf86ha on 04/10/2017 at 9:04pm
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It still puzzles me as to why they dont offer pet friendly cabins on the longer brittany end routes, yet are planning to add another ship with pet friendly cabins on the Normandy routes

Message posted by Dobboanddobbo on 05/10/2017 at 9:49am
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Hi we have used the Portsmouth/caen crossing overnight with our Springer Spaniel. She travels really well in the car and eurotunnel but we would never do that crossing again. She was really stressed despite us using a calming collar that we had bought from Pets at Home in advance. We will only take her on a ferry again if we can get a pet cabin but they are as common as gold dust so we went back to the eurotunnel this year then stopped at an Aire and slept in the caravan. I think it depends on your dog's personality as some are absolutely fine. We didn't use a muzzle or see anyone else with one.

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Message posted by Oh so camp on 05/10/2017 at 10:06am
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Traveling outward for some reason you could not travel with caravan and have a dog friendly cabin, you could coming from France,but for some reason not outward bound was or maybe still is a no no. Dunno if that rule is still current, be wise to check. We have crossed several times in the pet friendly cabins and found it fine, no problems. I know you wont be affected by the outward bound rules, just mention it in case someone else reads the thread.

Message posted by saxo1 on 05/10/2017 at 11:04am
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You can have a pet friendly cabin outward and return.
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Message posted by Robbie on 05/10/2017 at 1:10pm
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Quote: Originally posted by Oh so camp on 05/10/2017
Traveling outward for some reason you could not travel with caravan and have a dog friendly cabin, you could coming from France,but for some reason not outward bound was or maybe still is a no no. Dunno if that rule is still current, be wise to check. We have crossed several times in the pet friendly cabins and found it fine, no problems. I know you wont be affected by the outward bound rules, just mention it in case someone else reads the thread.



Not so. I have had a caravan on both crossings.


Message posted by Grandad Kenny on 05/10/2017 at 9:32pm
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Could you not put the dog in the caravan for the crossing, probably more familiar sleeping in the caravan rather than the car? Just a thought

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Message posted by Val A on 05/10/2017 at 9:40pm
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When we were coming back, in July, and with problems at Calais, we had absolutely no problems booking a pet friendly cabin for our return trip, Le Havre to Portsmouth. We booked only a day or two before we crossed, because of the problems at Calais. Are pet friendly cabins really as difficult to book as this thread suggests?


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