PETS IN FRANCE
The Pet Travel Scheme (PETS) is the system that allows pet dogs, cats and ferrets from certain countries to enter the UK without quarantine as long as they meet the rules.
It also means that people in the UK can take their dogs, cats and ferrets to other EU countries, and return with them to the UK.
They can also, having taken their dogs, cats and ferrets to certain non-EU countries, bring them back to the UK without the need for quarantine. The rules are to keep the UK free from rabies and certain other diseases.
Only dogs, cats and ferrets which have been vaccinated against the rabies virus will be allowed into the UK. Before traveling you must make sure that your pet fulfils all the conditions of the PETS passport scheme.
As of May 26th 2010, a limit of 5 dogs, cats or ferrets per person is applicable for all entries to the UK.
Pet rabbits and rodents
Pets from other EU countries and from Andorra, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Monaco, Norway, San Marino, Switzerland and the Vatican are able to enter the UK on any route at any point of entry, subject to the agreement and conditions of carriage of the transport company.
What you must do for a PET passport
Have your pet microchipped.
This must be done before any of the other steps are carried out. If your pet is tattooed, he must also be microchipped.
Have your pet vaccinated against rabies.
Even though your pet may already be vaccinated, they must under go another vaccination after the microchip has been fitted.
Before January 1st 2012 a blood test was required and a waiting period of 6 months before you could take your pet into the UK. As of this date, a blood test is no longer required and you only need to wait 21 days before being able to take your pet to the UK.
Get the right paperwork.
If you are in the EU, you should have an EU passport which will state all the information relative to your pet. You can even put a photograph in there!
As of January 1st 2012 the rules have also changed regarding what is required before you travel back to the UK. Before taking your pet back to the UK you must ensure that they have been treated against tapeworm (before January 2012 your pet also needed to have been treated with an anti tick treatment). This must be done by a vet and you will be issued with a certificate stating the time and date this was done. This must be done, no less than 24 hours before you leave the country you are in and no more than 120 hours (before January 2012, this was 48 hours).
Keeping up to date.
Make sure that you keep up to date with the booster vaccinations for your pet. On your pet passport it will state the valid from and until date for the vaccination. NOTE: in the UK the booster vaccinations are normally valid for 2 years, in France, they are valid 1 year. If you miss the date, your pet will have to have to go through the vaccination procedures again.
From start to finish, the passport will cost approximately £200/€. The treatment for tapeworm costs around 45€.
You will also have to pay to take your pet on the ferry/plane. Note that not all ferry operators accept pets.
On the ferry your pet will have to stay in the vehicle at all times.
Cats in France
As of January 2012 all cats must be micro-chipped.
Things to remember
Although you may love going to the beach, or skiing in the mountains, your pet may not!
Think through whether or not it is practical to take your pet. Will they be on their own every day? Will it be too hot or cold for them?
Temperatures in France are completely different to those in the UK. You cannot leave your dog in the car whilst you go off sightseeing, even with the windows down and a bowl of water. It gets too hot. In the winter, especially in the alps, it is far too cold to leave them in the car whilst you go skiing or boarding.
Dogs are not allowed on many beaches. I have 2 dogs who are extremely well behaved and yet sometimes it is harder accommodating them than our family with a small child!
Most campsites in France allow dogs, but will they be OK in a tent? If they bark a lot, a tent won't offer much protection against the noise. A tent can also be eaten/ripped, by an anxious dog.
If you are moving to France to live, what will you do with your pet when you want to go on holiday by plane? Who will look after them? One of the hardest things with a pet is leaving them with someone else. Without your family support network, who will you rely on?
If you lose your pet
If you lose your pet, inform the local veterinary centres, the Gendarmerie and the Police Municipale.
Call the local Société Protectrice des Animaux
Distribute posters with photos and ask people. We lost our dog one Christmas after she was attacked by another dog. We thought that we'd lost her, but it was only after asking local shop owners that we learnt that she'd been seen out and about. Thanks to posters and asking people, we found her again 3 days later. Don't give up hope!
If you find an animal
Call the Police Municipale. They will come round to your house, or place of work and take the animal.
If the animal has a tattoo or a microchip, there is a good chance that it will find it's owner. If not, the animal will be taken to the pound. This does not mean that it will be put to sleep. You can ask to be kept in touch with the fate of the animal.
Category 1: Attack dogs
Staffordshire terrier and American Staffordshire terrier (Pitbull terriers) without pedigree registration, Mastiff (Boerbull) without pedigree registration, Tosa without pedigree papers
Donating, buying, selling and importing of these dogs is illegal.
Both male and female dogs must be sterilised ( a vets certificate must be supplied as proof)
These dogs are banned from public transport, public places and common areas on apartment buildings. The dog must be kept muzzled and on a lead at all times.
Category 2: Guard dogs
Rottweiler (pedigreed), Staffordshire terrier and American Staffordshire terrier (pedigreed), Tosa Inu (pedigree). These dogs must be registered with a pedigree which is recognised by the French Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries. Also included, unpedigree and cross breeds dogs with "the appearance of a Rottweiller".
These dogs must be kept on a lead and muzzled at all times.
In both instances, the dog must be registered with the town hall and the owner must carry a licence for the dog issued by the town hall.
Any dog, regardless of its category, which bites or injures a person must be reported to the town hall by the owner. The dog then undergoes a behavioral evaluation by a vet who will advise on what to do next.
Dogs in the Chamonix Valley
The Chamonix valley is a fantastic place for dogs. They have the run of the forests and fields and mountains and they're allowed in many of the shops and bars, however there are rules.
Dogs are not allowed in any of the nature reserves: Aiguilles Rouges, Bérard & Carlaveyron . This applies even if the dog is on a lead. Not abiding by this rule can lead to a hefty fine. When you start your walk make sure you know whether or not you will be passing through a nature reserve. Well known walks to places such as Lac Blanc and Lacs Noirs are all in the nature reserve and as such, out of bounds to dogs.
Dogs are allowed on the Montenvers train but are not allowed in the ice grotto at the bottom.
During the winter season, dogs are not allowed in any of the other cable cars or gondolas. During the summer months this ban is lifted, but they are not allowed on the chair lifts (for obvious reasons).
It is worth noting that the Aiguille de Midi cable car has a ban on dogs throughout the year, on both sections.
If you are planning on staying in a refuge, get in touch with the refuge before you go to see if dogs are accepted.
From April 15th to June 30th dogs are not allowed off the lead in many of the wooded areas of the valley. This allows the wild animals living in the forest to grow up unhindered. Again there is a big fine if you are caught.
For those of you who like a bit of ski de fond, note that dogs are not allowed on the piste, however well behaved they are. If they cause an accident to someone you can be held liable.
Although you see many dogs walking around off the lead in the valley, your dog should always be on a lead in a public area and please, please pick up after your dog!! There are lots of bins and in some areas little bags are provided expressly for this purpose.
As of March 2011, dogs are not allowed to wander the streets of Les Houches. Ensure your dog stays in your garden or is kept on a lead to avoid any unpleasant visits from the Police Municipale.
Vets and out of hours care
Recently one of my dogs died. Unfortunately she chose a Sunday to become very ill and it was difficult to find a vet 'on call'. To help anyone else in this situation make a note of the following numbers:
The Centre Hospitalier Vetérinaire in St Martin de Bellevue near Annecy: 04 50 600 900 they have a 24 hour emergency department where you can take your pet. Although it's a long way from the Chamonix valley they have everything that is needed to save your beloved pet.
Domancy, the vets near to Mr Bricolage and Intermarché also have a vet 'on call': 04.50.93.51.46
How I can help
We brought two small dogs with us from the UK. They made numerous trips back and forth by boat and tunnel and they have loved their life over here. Forests, rivers and mountains become an ideal playground for them. If you want to know more about bringing a pet over, how to get them back to the UK or even help with dog training please ask.
Need to find a vet?
Need someone to look after your cat or dog whilst you're away?
Want someone to walk your dog whilst you're at work?
Looking for dog training?
Have you been bitten by a dog?
Have you lost your dog?
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Communiquer 74: Sarah Barnes Tel. 00 33 (0)188.8.131.52.95 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Disclaimer: The information contained in this website should be regarded as a guideline only. I try and update the information as often as possible but it is possible that certain information has been missed. I would love to be the font of all knowledge but unfortunately I am not! All situations are different and the information contained here may not be applicable to all cases. Please get in touch if you would like me to check any information in relation to your personal situation. My role is to be your voice, to ask the questions you would like asking and those that I know you should be asking. During the course of my work I have gained knowledge of lots of different aspects of French administration and can generally advise you on what is important and what isn't. Dealing with the French system on a daily basis means that I can help you do things far faster and can assist you through the minefield.
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