Every dog has its day. And onboard Queen Mary 2, there are a lot of lucky dogs. Twenty-two to be exact. That’s the new number of dogs (or cats) that can book passage for a transatlantic cruise aboard Cunard’s Queen Mary 2.
Watch as Kennel Master Oliver leads the dog parade on deck:
When Queen Mary 2 was sent for refurbishment last summer, increasing the size of the entire kennel facility was a top priority. Cunard has a long history of dogs and their owners crossing the unpredictable North Atlantic aboard their ships. Thus, adding 10 more kennels, from the original 12 to now 22 spaces, seemed a natural progression.
It’s not inexpensive, either. With a new facility comes new rates. Kennels range from $800 to $1,000 per crossing. But it’s more than just dropping your dog (or cat) off on Day One and returning to claim your pet at the end of the cruise.
Months before your voyage, there is an official stack of paperwork that needs to be completed and documented. Since there is no longer a quarantine period for a pet to enter England (there’s no rabies in England and they want it to stay that way) the hoops to jump through are quite tedious.
Once onboard, you and your dog become instant celebrities for a week. It begins with a short procession as dog owners and their dogs get priority boarding and quickly walk past all the other passengers waiting to board.
As soon as word gets out that you’ve a dog onboard, you become a target for questions. Dinner table-mates want to know. Then finally, on debarkation day (no pun intended), you again parade off the ship at your destination.
Take a peek at the kennels and the facility in the photos below. No one except owners are allowed inside. Though there’s usually a dozen or more curious passengers crowding around the gate to marvel at the dogs and take their photos.
If you are thinking about traveling to or from England and America with your dog or cat, it’s imperative that you contact the proper department at Cunard. You’ll work with the person in charge of this process who will walk you through the necessary steps so as to avoid any problems at both ends of the voyage.
Check and double-check your paperwork. Then be prepared for an adventure at sea like no other. Not only is Queen Mary 2 the best way ever to travel between Southampton and New York, traveling with your dog will make both of you instant celebrities for a week.
I’m the editor and creator of CruiseMaven.com, a solo traveler cruising the world on waves and wheels, collecting recipes along the way. I hope my articles and photos entertain, advise and inspire you to travel the world without flying. Take a breath…stop for a local meal and a glass of wine along the way.