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Save £100s On Dog-Friendly Holidays With These Bargain Hacks

Imogen Groome
4 August 2022, 9:00 pm
  • Taking the dog on holiday can be expensive if you’re not careful
  • Emergency trips to the vets and accidents on the carpet can make the trip stressful
  • Bills can easily rise into the £100s if your pup gets into mischief
  • Consumer Expert Tom Church reveals how to avoid these unwelcome costs
  • Tricks include looking for hardwood floors, considering camping and getting vaccinations up-to-date

Going on holiday is an exciting prospect, but realising you’ve got no options for the dog can put a dampener on the situation. One solution is to take your pup with you - but doing so can easily incur costs you weren’t expecting, if you’re not careful.

Tom Church, Co-Founder of money-saving community LatestDeals.co.uk, said: ‘Taking your dog on holiday is a great way for everyone to enjoy a change of scenery, but it’s worth taking a few precautions before loading up the car. From finding a rental without carpets to getting your pup’s vaccinations up to date, here’s how you can avoid £100s in unwelcome bills.’

Search For Holiday Rentals Without Carpets - Save Over £85 On Cleaning

If your dog is known for running around in muddy areas and then bounding into the house before you can get him into the bath, then you’ll want to think about the kind of floors you expose him to wherever you take the family on holiday. Similarly, if your pooch isn’t used to staying in unfamiliar places, be prepared for the occasional accident - which is much easier to clean up if a carpet isn’t involved. Check A Trade says the minimal charge per professional carpet cleaning visit is £85, and if you’ve managed to soil the carpet in such a way you need to get this job done by an expert, you might be in for some unexpected additional costs. If you’re particularly unlucky, you may get the host charging you for professional cleaning costs after you’ve left if they’re adamant your pup had a bit too much fun on the carpet!

To prevent this occurrence, try looking up rentals that don’t have carpets. Many places will offer stone or hardwood floors, which are much easier to clean up if the worst happens. Take a good look at the photos, and email the owners if you’re in any doubt. It’s always better to be safe than sorry!

Consider Camping To Cut Costs - Save Over £370 With Ease

If your holiday will involve taking kids and a dog who are always looking to burn excess energy, a good option to keep them active is camping. Not only is it an excellent way to experience nature, but it’s also a much easier way to take your pooch away with you - and it’s typically cheaper too. For example, if you’re a biking enthusiast, you can head up to the Tackeroo Campsite in Staffordshire where there is a top-notch mountain biking trail. It’s just £26 per night for two adults, two children and a dog. So if you went away for four nights, August 17-21, you’d be paying £104. By comparison, if you were to find a pet-friendly holiday rental in the same area, the cheapest option on Airbnb is £119 per night. So going for the same four nights would cost you £476 - that’s £372 more!

Holiday Near Family & Friends - Save Over £200 On Dog Walkers & Sitters

You may be planning a holiday where certain activities aren’t dog-friendly, and you don’t want to leave your pup at home for the day or even a few hours as they would be in a strange place. If you have friends or family within driving distance - or better yet, walking distance - of your holiday destination, you can save money on dog walkers and sitters by calling in a few favours. Your pup will be much happier having a few hours with your mum or friend instead of you paying out for a stranger to come along and help out. Besides, dog sitter and walker fees can be expensive. According to Wamiz, having someone look after your pooch while you’re away for a few hours could cost up to £15 per hour. Plus, if you get a dog walker, rates could be £10 per hour. If you want two full days out - say, 8 hours each - which aren’t dog friendly, you could be paying around £240 for a professional dog helper while you’re away!

Keep Vaccinations Up To Date - Avoid £200 Emergency Treatment

It’s recommended to vaccinate your dog around once a year. Check with your vet if you aren’t sure when your pup last got his shots, especially if you’re going to the other side of the UK. This is because various illnesses which affect dogs can be more prevalent in other areas of the region, and it’s better to be protected than face an emergency vet trip. According to ManyPets, an emergency consultation can cost up to £200, and often you would be required to make an upfront payment for treatment if you’re not at your usual branch. Generally speaking, vaccines for rabies, hepatitis, parvovirus and distemper last for three years, so if your pooch hasn’t been to the vets in a long while it’s best to book them in before you go away.

Get Insurance - Avoid £800 In Unwelcome Medical Fees

If you never got around to insuring your dog, or figured it wasn’t worth it, you may want to reconsider, especially if you’re taking pup on holiday. Your pup may be used to his walking routes in your local area, but if he goes to a dog park off the lead and runs off somewhere he doesn’t recognise, he’s more likely to have an accident. According to Tesco Bank, the average cost for treating accidents in small dogs in 2021 was £666, for medium dogs it was £711 and in large dogs it was £772. Plus, you could be handed a bill over £3,000 if Fido swallows something he shouldn’t and requires surgery. It’s best to shop around and find a good insurance deal where you can pay monthly to reduce costs.

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