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Taking your dog on a train

Tri-Rail (and Metrorail) pet policy: Small dogs in carriers allowed onboard

Tri-Rail is a 71-mile commuter railway on the east side of Florida, connecting West Palm Beach and Miami by way of Boca Raton, Pompano Beach, Fort Lauderdale and other communities (now operated by the South Florida Regional Transportation Authority, the Tri-Rail trains run on tracks once owned and operated by CSX — the line was formerly CSX’s Miami Subdivision). A convenience for residents, Tri-Rail is also a useful option for visitors with small pets, particularly since it links up with Metrorail  … Read more

Traveling by public transit (and train) in and around Madrid with a pet dog

This post was triggered by an article I ran across applauding the Madrid subway system’s recent decision to eliminate fees for pets. (Buen trabajo, Madrid!) I’ve since learned that Madrid’s public transit system, including metro trains, buses, and cercanías local rail, is vast. High time, therefore, to include it in Dog Jaunt’s list of public transit pet policies. Here’s what I’ve found:

Madrid’s metro system (as always, I give you the general link first, and then follow up with the pet policy — which gets  … Read more

Traveling by public transit (and train) in and around Rome with a pet dog

Put briefly, your pet dog need only be leashed and muzzled to travel on Rome’s public transit, but there is a fee. Broadening the focus beyond Rome, small pets in carriers travel for free on Trenitalia regional and long-distance trains, while there is a fee for larger dogs. We haven’t been back to Rome since Chloe walked (or, rather, wiggled — she was very small) into our lives. I suspect that, as in Paris, the rules provide a general framework for  … Read more

Bringing a small dog on Amtrak: Or, Chloe takes the train to Portland!

About a month ago, Chloe and I traveled from Seattle to Portland (and back) via Amtrak. I look at that sentence and I marvel: For the past seven years, I’ve been wistfully comparing Amtrak’s draconian pet policy to European trains’ typically generous policies, and praising the rare U.S. train systems (hello, Metro-North!) that are pet-friendly. Back in 2014, Amtrak cracked open the door with a pilot program allowing pet cats and dogs in carriers on certain Chicago-area trains, and they later gently  … Read more

Expansion of Amtrak’s “Pets on Trains Pilot Program”: Or, Chloe’s going to Portland!

After his 20-year snooze in the Catskills, Rip van Winkle’s first spoken words, appropriately for this blog, refer to his beloved pet Wolf: “‘My very dog,’ sighed Rip, ‘has forgotten me!’” Chloe and I have been gone nearly as long, it seems, but we haven’t forgotten you, and you (bless you, Dog Jaunt Nation!) haven’t forgotten us. Thank you for all the comments and travel reports — this is the week that I will start posting them and responding.

As those of  … Read more

Photo Friday: The Fuzzy One en route to Venice

What a pleasure it was to open a recent e-mail message and see a jubilant report from reader Wanda about spending four months in Europe with her pup! Here’s The Fuzzy One, a seven year-old, 13 lb. Shih Tzu, on a Trenitalia train to Venice:

Waiting to get underway at the Turin train station

Officially, per the Trenitalia website, your pet dog must travel in a 70x30x50 cm container, but heck, it’s Italy — I suspect that by this point in their  … Read more

Buying a TGV train ticket, making a reservation for your pet dog: Confusing differences between French and English SNCF Voyages sites

I’m posting this because we ran into a vexing discrepancy between the French and English versions of the SNCF Voyages pages: We could not add Chloe to our TGV reservation on the English site, but we could have on the French site. Save yourself an extra step and book your travel on the French site.

A quick overview to get you oriented: SNCF operates France’s national train system; and a piece of it, SNCF Voyages, operates the high-speed, long-distance TGV (“train  … Read more

Reader’s report: Scoop law sign from Amsterdam, and living with a pet in the Netherlands

Reader Melissa kindly sent me this shot from, I think, Amsterdam (you’ll see why I think that in a moment):

“Niet op de stoep” means, I now know, “not on the sidewalk” in Dutch. You see similar warnings elsewhere in Europe, and they’re just so baffling. Who can predict when their dog will feel the urge to purge? It seems more sensible to acknowledge that sidewalk poop happens, and to address, instead, the issue of picking it up and  … Read more

CapeFLYER train to Cape Cod is pet-friendly

Summertime has ARRIVED on the East Coast, I hear (still mild and lovely in Seattle, folks — I just mention it), so my eye was caught by this article in the New York Times about the CapeFLYER, a new train whisking people from Boston to Cape Cod and cooling breezes. “Whisking” is a relative term — when there’s no traffic, driving will take significantly less time than the train. But when there is traffic, and at this time of year,  … Read more

Eurostar trains are not pet-friendly, but the U.K., European trains they connect to are

Last week we got word of a new effort to get pets back on Amtrak trains — in a limited way, mind you: the Pets on Trains Act of 2013 [PDF] would allow only small pets in carriers on a single, designated car per train, and larger pets in crates in the cargo area, on trips under 750 miles. It’s an excellent start, however, and I urge you to join me in telling your congressperson you support the Act. Among the  … Read more