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Traveling To Paris With Your Dog: everything you need to know now

Traveling To Paris With Your Dog: Everything You Need To Know Now

[ Updated March 2022. ]

Traveling To Paris With Your Dog

Okay, guys. This post is a big one. Months before I left for Paris, I was online doing SO much research on how to bring your dog to Europe. The one thing I noticed is that a lot of the info on traveling to Paris with your dog is scattered and sometimes hard to read, boring or complicated. I’ve heard a lot of people say that dogs must be in quarantine when traveling internationally. That is not the case — as long as you follow the steps and paperwork then you’re good. Go ahead, bring your dog to Paris and c’est la vie!

Getting the correct paperwork to travel to Europe with your dog can be a stressful and lengthy process, but follow these steps below (and don’t forget your own passport!) and you’ll be well on your way.


Let’s start…

For official instructions for each country, the United States Department of Agriculture is the best place to go to print out forms and more.


1. Bring a microchip scanner in order to bring your dog to Europe

Your pet’s microchip must be 15 digits long in order to travel to Paris with your dog. If you have something different, then you must get your dog microchipped with a 15-digit microchip OR bring your own scanner. Personally, I think bringing your own scanner is the best bet, so your dog doesn’t need to have 2 microchips implanted in their body.

If you do decide to get a separate microchip implanted, then your pup must get a new rabies vaccine at least 21 days before travel. Hold onto the signed certificate.

If your original microchip is good, or you’re bringing a scanner and the rabies vaccine is up to date, then just make sure to bring their signed rabies certificate.

2. Obtain a health certificate signed by your dog’s vet

Visit your USDA-accredited vet within 10 days of travel to get a health certificate and forms signed.

What is a health certificate?

It’s a signed paper stating that your pet is healthy to fly and current on all their vaccinations. It must be issued and signed by your vet and can cost anywhere from $25-70. It is like a normal check-up and should take less than 20 minutes.

Health certificates are valid for 30 days.

The vet will know what to do and fill out the correct paperwork in blue ink. For France, it was a 7-page document and the signed rabies certificate.

3. Get paperwork stamped by USDA Office

The next step in traveling to Paris with your dog involves having all your paperwork stamped at your local USDA office. You can find a list of offices on the USDA page. Note: no dogs are allowed in the office.

It’s basically like waiting at the DMV. You get a ticket and wait. And wait. I waited 1.5 hours at the Los Angeles office and it wasn’t even busy (around 4-5 people total), so make sure you schedule some time.

It cost $38, and you get a fancy embossed stamp on all the paperwork.

This used to be in walk-in only, but now it is appointment only!

4. Time to fly to Paris with your dog!

Are you ready to jet set off to Europe with your dog? It’s a good idea to keep all your paperwork in one place and stay organized. I used my laptop sleeve and it kept everything nice and neat.

We flew from LAX to NYC and stayed one night to break up the journey. I think that’s a must, as LA to Paris is 11 hours, compared to NYC to Paris, which is just 7 hours. It really helps with jet lag too. Here is a list of airlines that go to Paris and allow dogs in-cabin.

Flight wasn’t bad at all, and Fira slept right through. When we landed in Paris though, that was a different story.

Going through customs at the Charles de Gaulle Airport took about half an hour, and I was so worried for Fira. She was trembling because she had to pee so bad. Then, when we got up to baggage claim I found out you can’t actually LEAVE the airport until you have your luggage.

Once you go outside, you can’t come back in.

WHAT. So, we waited and finally got my luggage, ran out the door and there was no dirt/grass patch in sight. None. Everything was cement.

I didn’t want to get yelled at for Fira peeing on cement so I got an Uber as fast as I could. The driver, of course, spoke no English and I had to signal him to pull over the second I saw some grass. Imagine the scene: we’re on the highway and I start flailing my arms around and pointing “PEE PEE” — finally we pull over and Fira probably took the best pee of her life.

(Optional) Pet Passport for Europe

If you’re thinking of traveling to Europe with your dog more often, consider getting a pet passport. You can only get it issued while you’re currently in Europe, so we visited a vet in Paris and got Fira a France passport. There’s an EU Passport too, but I think they only had the France ones at the time.

Plus, next year we’re coming back to France and going to England from Paris so I’m fine with that. Now with a pet passport, I don’t have to do the paperwork all over again each time I travel to Paris with my pup. 


So, that’s it! You’re ready to travel to Paris with your dog.

It’s really pretty straightforward — doing it for the first time does ensue some anxiety but now I feel pretty confident for our next trip. I will also be doing London from Paris so that will be an adventure.

England is so much more complicated, as it’s considered an island. There are stricter rules and you cannot fly directly into the country (unless your dog is in cargo, BUT French Bulldogs are not allowed in cargo).

Overall, Paris is surprisingly a dog-friendly city. If you’re traveling to Paris with your dog, you’ll find the French are very relaxed about dogs in general. We were even able to bring dogs inside a few restaurants and there are dog-friendly areas of the big parks (Tuileries, Palais Royal Gardens, Luxembourg etc) — perfect. You can read my dog-friendly Paris guide here.

Let me know if you have any questions in the comments. It was pretty daunting for me in the beginning but I knew I wanted to create a guide that was written in you know, normal human sentences that were easy to understand. Also, here’s a free step-by-step checklist!

Paris Dog-Friendly Guide

Paris, je t’aime.

Oh Paris — the city of Love… and dogs. I finally brought Fira and it made our trip so much sweeter.

First, the process to bring a dog to France wasn’t bad at all — you can read it step by step here. Second, most of the French have such a laissezfaire attitude about dogs. We even brought Fira inside a few restaurants and no one minded at all. Although, I still had anxiety waiting for someone to come up to us and say the dreaded words: “no dogs allowed”. And I definitely did not want to get yelled at by the French.

Here are my dog-friendly spots in Paris…

Tuileries Gardens. There are parts of the gardens that allow dogs — just look for dogs and go that way! I spotted locals with their pups on their morning walks.

Jardin du Luxembourg. Dog friendly on east side of park.

Champs de Mars. With one of the best views of the Eiffel Tower, pack a picnic + baguette (by the way, it is always so adorable seeing people walking all around the city holding huge baguettes — so French!) and hang out for lunch.

Palais Royal Gardens. I loved taking a stroll here and there are even grassy areas for pups to play in. Make sure to stop at the famous Cafe Kitsune for coffee + their fox-shaped cookies (you can see the outdoor cafe tables on the left side of the photo). Also along that side, I found a gorgeous home decor store called Maison de Vacances with fluffy sheepskin rugs, pillows in all different colors and textures and woven baskets. I ended up getting a burgundy rug and pouf!

Les Deux Plateaux (AKA Colonnes de Buren). Walk towards the inner courtyard and you’ll find these gorgeous black and white striped columns by French artist Daniel Buren. I didn’t realize this spot isn’t exactly dog-friendly but no one said anything!

There are parts of the fields in front of the Louvre (and the front of the museum itself) that are dog-friendly. It’s so crazy how majestic and stunning everything is…

Cafe de Flore. This famous coffeehouse (and one of the oldest) on Saint Germain is très adorable and great for people-watching. It’s pretty overpriced (I think I paid 7 euros for tea) but it’s just one of those must-go places.

Pizza anyone?

Pink Flamingo Pizza: order food to-go and they’ll give you a pink balloon where you can walk around the block to Canal Saint-Martin and they will deliver your food to you straight there!

The Batobus

I was planning on trying this but never got around to it but it’s a glass-enclosed shuttle boat on the Seine River which stops at 8 points along the way. It’s an easier, more peaceful way (no traffic and crazy streets!) of getting to all the main sight-seeing stops in Paris and only 18 euros/pp for 48 hours. Small dogs ride free.

Dog-friendly Hotels in Paris.

Mama Shelter. This Philippe Starck-designed hotel is trendy, fun and perfect for those conscious of their budget. Read my review here.

queen dog bed

Nolinski. Modern, sophisticated, luxury hotel with a highly rated spa. Pets stay free. Read my full review here.

Saint James. The only hotel in Paris with official chateau status–you’ll feel like you’re staying at a beautiful, historic Parisian mansion. Guerlain spa, Michelen-starred chef. Read my review here.

Hotel Jules & Jim. Swanky boutique hotel in the heart of Le Marais with art gallery. Read more here.


Photos by: Ylenia Cuellar 

[ drawing by @fine_frenchie ]

Airlines That Allow Dogs In-Cabin to Paris France

Finding airlines that will accept dogs in cabin for internation flights is tricky, but possible. For example, American Airlines is normally dog-friendly BUT on transatlantic flights (ie: JFK to Paris) dogs are not allowed. Weird, right? Dogs that can’t fit in a carry-on carrier must go in cargo underneath the plane.

After some research, this is what I found:


Fee: $200 (one way)
Small enough to be in a kennel/carry-on
Kennel must be able to fit under seat
Pet must stay in kennel at all times
At least 15 weeks old to travel to Europe
Kennels must be leak proof and ventilated on at least two sides
Pets aren’t allowed in First Class/Delta One


Fee: $125 (one way)
Must be in soft or hard kennel
Must fit underneath seat
Ventilated kennel and enough room for pet to stand and move


Fee: £125 or $164.40 (one way)
Weighing no more than 17 lbs including bag
Travel bag doesn’t exceed 18 x 11 x 9 inches
Bag must be well ventilated and must be big enough for animal to stand and move
Bag must fit under seat
Must have European Passport

More helpful links:


Williamsburg Hotel NYC


I’m in NYC several times a year but have yet to stay in Brooklyn or even truly explore it. The only times I’ve hopped over to the other side is for pizza (Best Pizza) or when I decide to take the subway. 9 out of 10 times I take the subway I get lost or somehow END UP IN BROOKLYN. Don’t know how this happens but all of a sudden I’ll see water around me and I’m like, hmm.. this doesn’t feel right.


Williamsburg Hotel was just the spot to rest my bones after an 8.5 hour flight from Paris. Opened only earlier this year, it’s quite stunning when you walk in. On the ground floor, you see cascading stairs to the floor below which holds the restaurant, bar and lobby. With the high brick-walled ceilings, glass + steel and industrial aesthetic, you really feel the Brooklyn vibes.

The rooms…

(150 to be exact) all have high floor-to-ceiling windows so you get amazing views and tons of soft light pouring in the room. I really appreciated the way the rooms were designed (Michaelis Boyd Studio) with a steel space-saving table where you can swing the stool underneath and the industrial leather + brass.

Definitely book a room with a terrace! Not only do you get a nice view, but they’re fitted with fake grass. Such a nice touch. Pets are $50/stay and are provided with a bowl, poo bags + gourmet treats. Rooms start at $250.



Nolinski Paris

queen dog bed

Nolinski was one of our favorite stays. I mean, look at Fira in that elegant bed. This boutique hotel (45 rooms) is not your traditional Parisian hotel. It is sleek, sophisticated, minimal — very modern. With its dark gray/silver color palette and heavy drapery, it feels like you’ve walked into an enchanting hideaway. By the way, pets stay free! (Haha, reminds me of “kids eat free!” at Sizzler)

The service is top-notch and they offer a Grand Salon (sitting area with a grand piano–where I did a lot of my work), a delicious cafe Rejane and spa called La Colline. If you’re ever in Paris, this spa is a must. It is sumptuous. It is dark, almost black but the whole wall surrounding the indoor pool illuminates with vague abstract designs with a gorgeous mirrored ceiling. The pool stays open til 11PM or later, by request. Very Starry Night-esque.

Location is great, as it’s based on a busy avenue but since it’s in the middle of the city, we didn’t find many grassy patches nearby. Luckily, the Palais Royal garden is not too far (less than 1/2 mile). We found an area that was closer when you turn left out of the hotel — there was a nice tree and dirt patch that was Fira’s designated potty spot. There’s also the “japonais district” right behind the hotel with rows of udon, ramen, sushi spots. Ugh, so good. Rooms start at $400. Pets: $0.

Saint James Paris

Saint James, the only hotel in Paris with official chateau status, feels like you’re staying at a beautiful, historic Parisian mansion. Out of all the hotels we stayed in in Paris, this felt the most French. Located in the 16th arrondissement, it’s in a residential area so it feels quiet, quaint and lovely. Although, it is walking distance to the main sights, I loved exploring the grounds and the hot air balloons in the back!

It’s also a private members club and features an exclusive Guerlain spa, plus a restaurant with Michelin-starred chef. All the rooms are designed very differently and sort of a mismatch of leopard prints, deep reds and flea market finds. Very Moulin Rouge? or Lady Marmalade?

Rooms start at $400. Pets 35 euros/night.

How To Get To Paris From London With Your Dog

The Eurostar does not allow dogs on their trains. Now what?!

On our recent trip to Paris, our friend @grrlgenius_ + writer mom Coco joined us for a weekend! We didn’t think it would be so complicated but let’s just send a collective thank you to Coco + Elle for their determination and dogmom-stubbornness (#dogmoms is a real thing and we’re, ahem, a passionate group). Keep reading for Coco’s recap of the journey in her own words.


When we first started discussing a trip to Paris, it seemed like it would be an easy journey. The most common question was “did we take the chunnel,” which is the Eurostar. 

I can confirm they only accept Guide Dogs. They do not have even one car, off-peak, with weight limitations available for dogs, not even in a bag or secured crate section as an option.

Yet, Paris is so dog-friendly. No one blinks an eye in the most expensive of stores.

That is why when I visited Paris 3 years ago and saw a French Bulldog running all over Versailles, a dream began of taking Elle to the Frenchie Motherland.


The basics of what I learned researching the journey:

Train: Eurostar, the only direct train from Central London to Paris.

Coaches: except Guide Dogs. The night bus for humans takes over ten hours, as the depot in Paris does not open until 6AM. If the bus arrives before then, passengers must remain on the coach.

Airlines: British Airways and Air France do not accept bulldogs in the cabin. Also costly.

Car rentals: Charge 60% additions if you are driving to Europe.

Private Car Service: Door-to-door roundtrip quote, plus Eurotunnel (the train for cars that takes a mere 35 minutes to cross €46 ticket price and the pet fee for animals at Pet Reception (25 Euros) coming in at £545.

France requires a tapeworm treatment good for 5 days entering from the UK with a valid pet passport. (No tapeworm treatment necessary if coming from USA)


I used to locate a dog-friendly route. I had seen a friend posting about taking with her dog.

Unfortunately that particular ferry route leaves twice a day so we would have gotten up at 4am to reach the port by 8 AM or arrived at midnight in Paris. In the end a ferry customer service representative informed me the only route that accept dogs as foot passengers was DFDS, leaving from the southern port of Newhaven and arriving in Dieppe, France. The ferry also leaves only twice a day, but the first departure was more manageable at 10AM.

Dressed in her Barbour collar and lead, (Elle normally wears a harness, but we decided to experiment for this trip — it is Paris, after all), Elle was excited to go directly to the overground train station.

Kitted out, we boarded our first train, waited 20 minutes to switch trains first at Clapham Junction, missed a train (there was only a 3 minute leeway) at Lewes, so waited another half an hour until the next one. It was only one 10 minute train ride to Newhaven.

It was at this point, I started to ask myself why I had not dissected the journey i.e. trains from Lewes to Newhaven town instead of looking up trains from London to Newhaven Town. It would have saved us almost 2 hours.

The ferry had warned to arrive 45 minutes minimum pre-boarding to accommodate for passport control. The walk from the Newhaven Town train station was 3 minutes to the sad ferry port office and passenger lounge.

When we entered the building, there were signs warning it was for Guide Dogs Only. I walked in confidently with Elle. We were checked in and then an older man came shouting out at us from the ferry crew.

A very brisk day, it was beyond me why a ferry service would accept dogs and take a fee for them but not allow them in the port to check-in.

It was at this point we went outside for Elle’s breakfast and I gave her a calming pill called Zylkène, a natural choice for behavioral support because she has never been on a ferry before and I was told she had to be kept in a crated area because it was not hygienic to have her on the upper decks.

After 10AM (time of departure) the ferry crew began the passport boarding reviews. We were ushered with other foot passengers aboard a bus, then we all walked through the loading door.

Elle and I were led by crew members who did not speak English to the “dog area.” I say area loosely because it consisted of 4 large, dirty cages, some with old water, food and rust — none that had secure locks for the doors.

The crew member pointed for me to place Elle in a cage. I was extremely heart-broken. I considered taking one of Elle’s calming pills but I didn’t.

The area was on the car and truck loading bay, with sirens going off the entire 4 hour journey to France.

The representative I had asked about dogs told me I’d be lucky if I was allowed to visit Elle once during the journey because a crew member had to accompany me and they left me and didn’t even bother to come back to see if I had left Elle.

It was the most stressful part of the journey.

Once we reached the other side, the view was gorgeous. While the UK port had been a sad, depressing area, the French coast was beautiful and the houses reminded me of Cinque Terre, while the cliffs reminded me of images of the White Cliffs of Dover, making me wish I had once again been able to leave from that port.

[ image credit : instagram @spunkskyn ]


Once we arrived in France, cars are unloaded before foot passengers.

When we disembarked, we were sent to a bus, driven to the passport office with the other foot travelers. While waiting for luggage, we befriended an English painter who lives in Dieppe. She kindly offered to drive us to the train station.

That leg of the journey cost 40 Euro, taking over 2.5 hours to reach central Paris. The first train was far cleaner than the second and Elle seemed extremely happy to be back on a mode of transportation she was used to and even listened intently to the mother tongue spoken to her by the conductor.

We switched trains once and headed to a packed train. Once we arrived in Paris, we could have taken the Metro but Elle and I were both exhausted. We opted for a taxi, where Elle was asked to remain in her dog bag.

The journey time clocked in at over eleven hours. 

For the journey from Paris back to London, it was another story.

Weekend timings made things quite challenging. I couldn’t rent a car in France for the Dieppe to Paris return since there was no car rental open on a Sunday to return it.

I went through all the above options with one of the car rental places. A kind salesperson suggested I look into the rideshare service called The drive back was smooth sailing! I connected with a man who had made 61 trips and had a rating of 4.8 out of 5 over five years.

The entire trip took 7 hours.

The tapeworm treatment was good for 5 days, so we didn’t have to go to another vet in France. My experienced driver took us to Pet Reception. He even knew how to scan the microchip, which officials let you do “for the comfort of your dog.”

There is an area for your dog to play outside and relieve themselves. A digital sign proudly displayed 506 animals had been processed that day. It was so easy and incredibly fast, especially at 10PM at night.

We simply drove onto the train, remained in the car and were back in England in a mere 35 minutes. The entire drive took just over 7 hours due to a slight delay by the Eurotunnel.

I was charged for 2 seats having Elle and totalled £126, (Pet Ticket, Eurotunnel ticket, plus 2 seats.) Look out Europe because this is our new favorite way to travel.


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