This article was written by Algarve Life Stripped Naked:

Pets enrich our lives, and love us unconditionally. Many things must be considered when moving abroad with your faithful and beloved furry friends. Are you prepared for the various diseases that your best friend would be particularly vulnerable to?

If you are considering traveling back and forth, you pet will need a ʻPet Passportʼ which requires vaccinations, photos, microchip and the relevant veterinary signatures. If you are bringing him out permanently, then export papers are required and can be obtained with the help of your local vet. Next, do you drive or fly them over? Some airlines like TAP and Monarch will carry pets, usually in the hold. A Fitness to fly certificate and a suitable crate are needed. This can be an expensive, but more simpler option than taking the ferry or eurostar and driving. Should the latter be your choice, the shortest ferry is advisable as pets are not encouraged out of the vehicles. Papers will need to be kept at hand for customs purposes, also for border control. A chat with DEFRA in advance will give you all the information and legalities that are required.

When you arrive with your pet, make sure that you find a local vet. Most vets here I have found, do speak English, though prices vary considerably. A ʻScaliborʼ collar should be acquired immediately to prevent leishmaniose. Heart worm (dirofilariose), fleas and ticks can be prevented by the use of ʻAdvantixʼ and ʻPulvexʼ treatments. Some insurance companies are now offering pet insurance. It is not as comprehensive as those on offer in the UK, but its a start, and a big help should a crisis happen. There is a good Government Vet in Loulé (Veterinaria de Republica Loulé) located near the GNR station. This tends to be much cheaper than the private alternatives, of which there is a wide choice locally.

Have you considered adopting when you arrive? There are many animal charities in Algarve, bursting at the seams with cats, dogs (and donkeys) that need a new and loving home.

Useful resources:
DEFRA
http://www.defra.gov.uk/
Rescue Centres
http://sosalgarveanimals.com/

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