Holidaying with your Hound – Finding dog friendly holidays

Here in Great Britain we consider ourselves to be a nation of dog lovers. We like to lavish love and attention on our pooches and for some, going on holiday without the family dog is unthinkable. So when holiday season comes around we know it is time to get out the brochures – or hit the Internet – and start booking our summer getaway. Luckily there are a lot of dog-friendly holidays to choose from so let’s take a quick look at what’s on offer.

Fun for all the Family – Including the Dog
When you decide to take Fido on holiday with you, his entertainment needs have to be considered just as much as the family’s. After all, it is no good just planning to leave him behind in the holiday accommodation while you go off having fun. For one thing the dog could become anxious and destructive if he’s left alone in a strange place and that could well turn out to be very expensive for you!

With this in mind, you need to consider what kind of holiday you want and what sort of things you want to do. For example, many holiday cottage companies offer accommodation that allows for one dog, or sometimes two small dogs. These cottages are often in the heart of the countryside where there are great dog-walking opportunities out in the fresh air. You may want a beach holiday and again, self-catering apartments or caravan parks, like Haven or Parkdean, often accommodate responsible dog owners. There are lots of hotels around the UK which have cottoned on to the desire of the great British public to be with their pooches at holiday time and will allow (well-behaved) dogs to be kept in the hotel room.

Be Prepared and Be Aware
Having selected your holiday you need to then turn your thoughts to the things your dog will need during his time away with you. Remember to pack his food bowls, toys, blankets and enough food to cover the duration. Wherever you are going there may be certain restrictions on where your dog is allowed, for example at some beaches and parks, but you can find lots of dog-friendly pubs, cafés, shops and restaurants. If you’re staying in the countryside always be aware of the need to protect livestock and wildlife from your dog and be especially aware that farmers have the right to shoot any dog, which he considers to be a danger to his animals.

If you’re travelling abroad, remember your dog requires a pet passport and up-to-date vaccinations as well as information about access to veterinary care if necessary. And check ahead to find out how your dog will be transported.

The choice is yours
You can pick from numerous holiday cottage companies like Sykes Cottages or Cottages4you; expect to pay anything from around £250 upwards for 7 nights. The Internet is a great source of information and dogfriendly.co.uk has everything you need to know about a dog-friendly holiday. Brittany Ferries offer holidays in France and Spain; an example is a luxury Spanish villa for £901 in low season up to £1416 in high season, inclusive of travel costs and car hire.