Not many cruise lines offer a pet friendly cruise option; only one, in fact. That cruise line is Cunard, the British cruise line that has been operating since 1840 out of Southampton, England. But what does it mean to be a pet friendly cruise? Are there dogs and cats just running around the deck? Are there limitations to the animals you are allowed to bring? Are the ships equipped to care for your fur baby? We’ve got all the answers to your burning questions about taking a cruise with your beloved pet.
Where Can I Cruise With a Dog?
If you are looking to take a transatlantic cruise with your dog, then you are in luck. The Queen Mary 2 is a pet friendly cruise option that offers kennel services on trips across the pond that depart from Southampton, Hamburg, and New York. While pets are still not allowed in state rooms and public areas on these cruises, you will be able to visit your furry friend several times throughout the day while the kennel is open. While you are throwing back Mai Tais and relaxing by the pool, your dog will be enjoying an outdoor, off-leash play area with the other pups in the kennel, so you won’t have to feel bad about not being with them. And don’t worry, there is an indoor play area as well for when the weather gets rough!
What’s Included in the Cost of a Pet Friendly Cruise?
Cruises are well known for being all-inclusive, so it makes sense that a pet friendly cruise service would be as well. The cost of the kennel service includes pretty much everything that your dog will need, including food and water bowls, dog biscuits, dog coat, fleece blanket, and even a free portrait to commemorate the trip. While in the kennel, staff will pamper, feed, and exercise your dog so keep them happy and healthy. If your pet has special dietary needs, the cruise line will do what they can to accommodate you, and you can even bring your own food if they aren’t able to meet your needs. And, kennel service is not just for when you cruise with a dog; they also take care of cats!
Are There Any Restrictions?
As mentioned earlier, pets are only allowed on the Queen Mary 2 for transatlantic voyages leaving from Southampton, Hamburg, and New York. Of course, this restriction is for pets only. If you require a service animal, you don’t need to take a pet friendly cruise — Service animals are allowed on all sailings. Unfortunately, transfers are not available to passengers who cruise with a dog, not even for guests who are using Cunard Air. Lastly, there are a number of breeds that are not allowed in the kennels due to their size. These breeds include Afghan, Curly Coated Retriever, Bloodhound, Gordon Setter, Borzoi (Russian Wolfhound), Great Dane, Briard, Greyhound, Irish Wolfhound, Irish Setter, Mastiff, Deerhound, Newfoundland, Doberman, Pyrenees, St. Bernard, Saluki, Weimaraner, Bull Mastiff and Malamute.
What if My Pet Gets Sick While on Board?
Cunard does not offer an on-board veterinarian, and while they do have a doctor on staff, their medical staff is not equipped to help pets. As such, it is imperative that you check with your veterinarian before trying to cruise with a dog. If your pet is not in perfect health, this could lead to you having to deal with a medical emergency without any way to get to a vet. Remember that even the most pet friendly cruise is going to come with some risks, so you should only embark on one if your pet is in perfect health. It may be a good idea to ask your veterinarian about motion sickness — It’s going to be a long trip and you don’t want Fido to feel sick the whole time!
How Do I Book a Pet Friendly Cruise?
The Queen Mary 2 has 24 kennels on board, but as the only cruise ship that offers this service, you can imagine that they fill up pretty fast. To make sure you get a spot, it is imperative that you plan ahead — We recommend at least 12 months in advance in order to secure a ticket. At Cruises.com, our travel agents can assist you with booking a kennel on a pet friendly cruise. A deposit will be required at the time of booking, as well as some basic information about your pet, including name, breed, weight, size, age, and gender.
Want help booking a pet friendly cruise on the Queen Mary 2? Visit Cruises.com — we can help you book the smart way! We give you our exclusive bonus offers and all qualifying Cunard offers, plus all of the Cunard World Club loyalty program benefits. Book online for the largest selection of cruise line deals at Cruises.com or call 800-288-6006 today.