Chase and I just got back from the State of Washington where I could kick back with Denise, an ole mate of mine from college days , and Chase romp with her friend, Shadow. One day we humans let the dogs have the house to themselves (after arranging a dog sitter to come in and walk ‘em, natch) and us gal pals drove to Seattle and hopped a ferry to Bainbridge island.
Traveling with dogs is something I’m used to, but never gave much thought about dogs riding ferries. Years ago, living in Washington I’d taken my previous dogs, Dash and Fable, on ferry trips to the different islands. But now that I’m writing blogs, the sight of a fella hefting a fluffy woofer from his car and carrying her up the ferry decks led me to think about rules for dogs riding ferries – and that one thought led to others.
Domestic Rules for Dogs Riding Ferries?
I caught up with ferry doggy Maggie and her Seattle-based owner Shane on the top deck of our ferry, dubbed the Wenatchee. That top deck was the only place doggies would be allowed to walk (on leash) on any of the decks (no free range wandering in the cabins) of our particular vessel. Otherwise, Washington State Ferries rules stipulate small dogs riding ferries can be kept in carriers within the cabins or locked in the car (For readers not familiar with the Pacific Northwest, most of the Washington State ferries are large enough to carry hundreds of cars and trucks). Maggie was an excited and friendly little pup taking her first ferry ride and rushing all around to see and smell everything at the end of her leash. Lucky dog!
But that got me wondering about ferries in other countries. Washington being so close to Canada, traveling with dogs on ferries just seems like something folks would want to do. A bit of surfing and I found out there’s a $20 fee each way for dogs traveling on the Victoria Clipper , and that ferry line requires dogs be contained in kennels and space booked in advance; plus there are Canadian regulations (even for visiting dogs on ferries, because here you’ll be dealing with Canadian Inspection services , so it’s best to know and follow all their regulations. No fees applied to traveling on the Seattle regional lines.
Traveling with Dogs International – and Pet Passports?
Meanwhile, there’s also dogs riding ferries in the UK and the European Union. As examples, Brittany Ferries out of the UK charge “ …just £16.50 [for] your cat or dog [to] travel on any … routes to France, in the comfort of your own car. If travelling to Spain the cost is £69 return.” And the UK’s P & O line has distinct rules and rates for pets depending on whether you’re traveling the Dover – Calais, or Hull – Rotterdam/Zeebrugge, or Liverpool – Dublin, airnryan/Troon – Larne lines.l
The Greeks are pros at island travel, so can people travel with dogs on those ferries? I’d hopped numerous Greek ferries and admit to never spotting a dog on board, however, they are indeed allowed, though specific Greek Ferries pet rules apply (such as muzzling dogs when walking them on deck) in addition to standard UE regulations.
Have you ever considered the necessity of passports for dogs riding ferries? Pets (dogs, cats, ferrets) traveling to and from the UK via ferry requires an EU pet passport, and there are rules that apply for pets traveling via any mode in the UK as detailed in MADREDDOG . Those passports make travel overall easy as they establish that your pet’s received required vaccinations within the established time passport timeframe, microchip information, and other essentials for custom travel requirements – Don’t leave home without it!
Well, mates, I hope this post gives you plenty to yabber about (that’s Aussie for ‘talk’ or ‘chat’) next time you’re enjoying a brew – Better yet, are you hankering to take your woofer on ferry ride?
Good on ya!