Expat Forum For People Moving Overseas And Living Abroad banner

1 - 14 of 14 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hello there!

I moved to Madrid over a year ago and brought my cat with me. We flew with Lufthansa and she came on the flight with me as hand luggage. It was really cheap and the documentation was simple to organise. The only downside was that we had to spend about 9 hours flying, since we had to go through Frankfurt first.

Anyway, since coming to Madrid we've adopted another cat and a small dog. We're happy living here, but I always like to have a back-up plan, just in case.

I've looked at transporting our pets back to Ireland, just in case things didn't work out here, but it seems to be next to impossible. There are no airlines that allow you to take the pets in the cabin (even Lufthansa) and each airline that allows pets as cargo requires you to book through a third-party agent- which would cost about €2000. This seems a little excessive since it only cost €60 to bring the cat on the flight originally!

Leaving the pets behind wouldn't be an option, nor is driving back and taking the ferry as neither I nor my boyfriend have a driver's licence.

Any thoughts?

Thanks! :flypig:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
412 Posts
When you say a third party agent do you mean one who arranges the flights, carriers etc or can you use one of the many companies that will transport your pets??
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
I meant a freiht or cargo agent who would book the pets on the flight. We would have to bring them to the airport and collect them on the other side. Even if we were flying on the same flight, the airlines don't allow you to book it yourself.
I've tried contacting a few transport agents as well, but again, it looks like it's going to cost a small fortune.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
558 Posts
Your return to Ireland with an additional cat and of course a dog will raise some eyebrows. I presume you already know that you have to advise the Irish authorities about bringing animals into Ireland even from within the EU. Rabies is the big fear and it is not cheap to bring your pets by air, land or sea. Vaccinations from approved sources are required etc. These are not cheap and I reckon you will need implant identification also for the animals.

Bringing animals into the cabin of an aircraft would not be greeted well by other passengers even if the animals were caged. You nor your boyfriend have a car in which to travel. So you are snookered somewhat. I think you might have some difficulty if the animals are exposed to the public on a sea ferry also.

But, all is not lost. Daily there are large trucks that travel between Ireland and Spain. I have no doubt some driver would be happy to help. Do yourself a favour though inform the Irish authorities and complete the paperwork beforehand.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
@Leper they all have their health cards, vaccinations (including rabies), tests for leukaemia, FIV, leishmaniasis, etc, their passports and all of the necessary bloodworm and papers, as well as being microchipped.
The paperwork and pre-preparation is the easiest thing in the world, the only problem is the physical transportation.
Since Ireland is within the EU, once pets have a pet passport, they are free to travel without any restrictions whatsoever, as long as you've got a means of transport... Which is the issue here ;)
Thanks for the advice though!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Also, @Leper, taking Bee in her cat carrier from Ireland to Germany, and then Germany to Madrid was no issue at all, she came onboard with us as hand luggage. Most airlines will allow up to three pets (under 8kg) to be checked in on flights (except Easyjet, Ryanair and some other budget airlines). Flying out of the country is no issue at all, it's just finding a carrier to bring them back in again that is.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
1,832 Posts
Check Crapbook (opps I mean Facebook) for pet transport as I have seen quite a few advertising now and then.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
503 Posts
Sadly all European based airlines have rules about animal transportation by air to the UK / Ireland and its a fact that no airline will allow pet entry into either country except under the auspices of a third party air freight agency. Monarch and BA both wanted upwards of 750GBP to transport a 5kgm chihuahua one way (either way!) from LGW to AGP.

Its ridiculous that I as a 65Kg passenger can fly the same route for as little as 50GBP and maybe pay 10GBP per kgm for excess baggage whereas a lardy a*se who really should occupy two seats pays the same price. but a 6kgm dog / cat... 750GBP. Not only are the rules restrictive in price, the animals can only be imported through specific airports; In the UK its LHR, LGW, MAN, GLA and EDI. In Ireland its DUB and BFS as I recall and in both the UK and Ireland the animals have to be collected from specialist Animal Reception Centres.

Given that the European Pet Passport is a legal document and there are controls are in place at all European mainland Airports the UK's / Ireland paranoia about Rabies is way over the top! Or maybe its just another way of fleecing the punter...

As for the reality of economically transporting your animals to Ireland, it would have to be by road and ferry... you, as the owner, can transport up to 5 animals yourself without additional documentation (TRACES). Animal transport companies do require this additional documentation but the road journey is long and stressful...

Truckies on the Spain-UK-Ireland routes would also need this documentation since they are not the owners of the animals; without it the animals will be refused exit from Santander or Bilbao or even if they do manage to suggle them out the responsibility for the animals welfare is entirely down to the truck driver.

UK Borders and Customs are very heavy on animal smuggling... there are heavy penalties which could result in the driver losing his job and or licence and the animals placed in quarantine irrespective of the validity of the Pet Passport.

RENFE do not allow animals on their long haul routes so going by train from Madrid to Bilbao or Santander by train to pick up a UK bound ferry as a foot passenger is a non-starter.

Its short and curlies time; everyones out to make a buck...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
558 Posts
I'm probably saying the wrong thing here. But, I am the owner of a dog which is probably my best friend.

There are ads on television currently advising that a dog is not just for Christmas. The warning, of course, is that around the end of January every year many pups are abandoned by owners who simply cannot come to terms with minding, caring, cleaning up etc from the animal which a month earlier was the cuddliest most lovable being on earth.

This begs the question:- If you knew you were going to return to Ireland and you probably knew of the expense involved, why did you acquire the additional animals? I might be leaving myself open to a torrent of bullets heading in my direction and I said what I said just as a warning to people who might just acquire pets without thinking of the bigger picture.

The hole is getting bigger; I must stop digging.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
@Leper I'm fully aware of the ads on the TV saying that a pet is for life... For years I have fostered abandoned cats and kittens too small to be adopted, so I spent hours bottle feeding them and cleaning them, and trying to find them homes.
The cat that we brought from Ireland was an abandoned feral that we hand reared, and there was no way we were leaving her behind.
We fostered several cats over here, but our own cat was miserable every time they found a new home and would spend weeks wandering around the house crying.
We adopted our second cat from a protectora. We originally tried fostering him but no one else would adopt him, so he stayed with us. He was owned by a couple that spent years breeding his mother, every year for money. When they decided to get divorced, they realised the mother was too old to make money from, and our cat was neutered so they were both useless to them. They brought them to the vet to be put to sleep, so we took him off the vet's hands.
The dog we have was abandoned in a cardboard box as a newborn puppy and left to die in July in the hot sun in Murcia. After a day or two someone found the mother dog and six puppies and no one expected them to live. Luckily they all did, but the choice was to take her, or let her be given to the pound where she would have been put to sleep because they didn't have the resources to keep another dog.
My point is, that I haven't just spent a couple of grand on a few pure bred pets to show off. All of my pets are rescued, have been extremely hard work and a drain on finances, but i wouldn't be without them. They've also been thought about long and hard before we adopted any of them.
Also, our plan wasn't to move back to Ireland, it was to make Spain our home. I have a good job with an international social media marketing agency, but my boyfriend's an English teacher which means he only has work 8/9 months of the year. Moving back to Ireland isn't a certainty, but I want to have a back-up plan in case we need to return, and the reason for that, is the pets. I want to have everything clear and planned out in advance. That's why I posted on the forum, to just ask people their experiences and to see if anyone could offer advice.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
@whitenoiz how did you get your chihuahua back in the end?
I totally agree with the money -making scam. It's a disgrace. There is free movement of pets in the EU so the restrictions seem to be infringing on that if anything.
If they made it easier, there wouldn't be trucks of animals dying in inappropriate situations like the 12 greyhounds that died on a ferry being smuggled to Spain a few weeks ago, and all of the illegal puppy farm dogs that are being transported in. If anything, it would make it easier to police!
I wouldn't risk trying to smuggle them in with a truck driver, there'd be too much risk to the animals and it'd be horrible for them.
I didn't realise the RENFE didnt allow them on the longer journeys, so that's another plan foiled... And none of the ferries allow pets to travel with foot passengers either, even though they are kept in kennels once they're aboard!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
Or find someone with whom you and the animals can travel
@Relyat it looks like we'll have to ask someone to drive over from Ireland and then drive us back again!
Unfortunately even if I got my driver's license here, it wouldn't be any good to me because I can't rent a car in Spain and drop it off in Ireland because it's left hand drive! And I couldn't buy and sell one either!
 
1 - 14 of 14 Posts
Top