• This topic is empty.
Viewing 5 posts - 1 through 5 (of 5 total)
  • Author
  • #6766

      Many of you know we sail with our dog Domino and have brought her back on the Calais Dover ferry several times. Well, P&O have cancelled the service. No legal way back now!

      I see the only way forward is to get DEFRA to allow marinas to check passports as well as the ferry companies.

      Click here to sign http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/pets-on-private-boats/

      The petition text is below.
      Also see the response from DEFRA to my suggestion, make sense of that.
      Please sign, please recruit your sailing friends and contacts, please promote the cause on forums, etc.
      Many thanks,

      Dr. Geoff Cutts
      Mobile 07902 913250

      Petition Text

      Did you know it is illegal to bring a pet (dog) back into the UK on a private boat even if it has a pet passport? It is.

      The way we have brought our pet dog back on many occasions is for me to single hand the boat whilst my wife and dog travelled as foot passengers on P&O from Calais to Dover. This is the route we have used several times to legally bring our dog back into the UK. It workedwell and P&O provided a good service. Whilst crossing from Calais to Dover single handed is not ideal, with careful planning, and fair weather, it is not unreasonable.

      P&O have just announced that they will no longer accept reservations for foot passengers with pets on their Calais Dover service. This means there is no reasonably way sailors can legally return to the UK with a pet.

      With ferry companies not willing to convey pets unless they are in cars it does seem that the options open to sailors with pets are totally unworkable and consequently there are no options. Unless DEFRA change the rules I really believe many more crews will just sail home with their pet. It’s not legal and your pet could be placed in quarantine and you may be fined.

      This September we sailed home from the Olympics, London to Brixham stopping off at many of the south coast marinas. When asked, most dock masters did not know the rules but legally they must report the landing to DEFRA. However all marinas had notices reminding everyone that the landing of animals is not legal.

      Please support my suggestion for a Way Forward:-
      1. All pets sailing across the Channel to be required to have a pet passport, no change.
      2. All pets to be treated and checked by a vet in France prior to travel to the UK, no change.
      3. All owners to be required to E:Mail DEFRA with their intended crossing date, their boat and pet details and
      their ETA into the UK and their port of entry. This information to be passed to the port of entry, new.
      4. When all of the above has been completed pets should be allowed to travel on private boats, new.
      5.On arrival in the UK all pets should remain securely on board in their port of entry until their pet passport has been
      checked. No change. Checking to be done by a body other than the ferry company.

      This would require DEFRA to authorise other bodies to check pet passports in addition to the ferry companies.

      I have asked a number of managers of south coast marinas if they would perform the check. Their answer, in principle, yes, but we would need to be authorised by DEFRA. I specifically talked to the Marina Manager in Dover who again said, in principle, yes. He told me that Dutch boats do arrive in Dover with dogs on board. The Dutch generally understand that the pet passport is sufficient as it is throughout Europe. The marina does contact DEFRA who generally arrive at the marina within minutes. DEFRA check the paperwork and declare it all to be ‘in order’, but they warn the crew that if they allow the dog onto the pontoon it will be placed in quarantine and they will be fined.

      If you are a sailor with a sailing pet or a sailing vet or a sailor who is willing to support the petition, please help by petitioning DEFRA.

      And that reply from DEFRA
      Dear Mr Cutts

      Thank you for your e-mail received on the 18th December 2012.
      Please be advised that it is a commercial decision for the ferry operator to apply for an agreement called a Required Method of Operation (RMOP) which sets out the responsibilities of the carrier (ferry operator) including the checking of the pet in accordance with the requirements of the Order or any restrictions in handling certain classes – for example, foot passengers.
      Private boats and planes cannot be authorised under the NCMPAO 2011 Order to transport pet dogs or cats into the UK. It would require a change in the law to authorise the private transport and an additional mechanism to check pets if this was approved.

      Mrs Carol Rider

      Dr. Geoff Cutts
      Mobile 07902 913250


        sail back with DFS, you do need to book through caravan club,

        rgds Ray



          I can find dfds but dfs seem to sell furniture, do you mean DFDS. DFDS do not allow pets with foot passengers but hopefully you have found a way. May I ask if you can explain how to book through the caravan club please. Thanks.


            Sorry Geoff, i got my wires crossed, your right even dfds ask to keep in car, so not available to foot passengers.

            rgds Ray


              I did hope you had found a way. The article with quotes from Defra and our local vet should be in April’s issue of Practical Boat Owner.



            Viewing 5 posts - 1 through 5 (of 5 total)
            • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.