USEFUL TIPS ON QUARANTINE
Compiled by Lady Fretwell of Passports for Pets
1. Write to the DEFRA for the list of their approved quarantine kennels. Remember the Ministry only accepts responsibility for security not pet welfare. Approved means security, not welfare. Despite a bill having been passed in December 1998, there are still no statutory welfare rules in British quarantine kennels there is only a voluntary code of welfare.
2. Decide which are conveniently located and write to several to compare what they have to offer. What is included - is heating extra? how much? Is there any shade in summer? Remember you are the customer paying for an expensive service - these people are not the agents of the British Government. They are running a private business.
3. Before choosing your quarantine kennel, if possible, visit or get a friend to visit. Do not be impressed by the glossy brochures or outward trappings of the kennel or cattery. What matters is the individual attitude of the staff. Your pet will be entirely in their hands for 6 months (recent personal recommendations are useful.)
4. Contact the Feline Advisory Bureau for their list of recommended catteries.
5. Check and have confirmation in writing of your pet's required food. Will it consist of tinned, dried or fresh food?
6. Get agreement in writing that your pet will be groomed regularly, and if (apart from emergencies) veterinary attention is needed, you will be contacted before action is taken, also check that you can bring in an independent vet should you want a second opinion.
7. The vet attached to the quarantine kennel will be responsible for the health of your pet for the full six months. Ask to see the vet as soon as possible to discuss with him/her your pet's requirements.
8. The only vaccination required by law after entry to a quarantine kennel is the rabies vaccine, regardless of whether this was done recently. All other vaccinations are not a legal requirement, but sensible, so if you have proof of other vaccinations send copies of the certificates and state that you do not wish your pet to be revaccinated. (Over vaccination is not healthy.)
9. Some kennels claim that no visiting in the first 14 days is a DEFRA requirement. This is false, and solely for their own convenience. It is not a DEFRA requirement.
10. The Agriculture Minister stated on July 4th 1996, "Complaints about the conditions in which animals are kept can be referred to the veterinary superintendent appointed to the quarantine premises. Responsibility for investigating problems relating to the contract between the quarantine premises and owners of animals kept there falls to the local trading standards department of the local authority.' So contact them if you need to.
11. READ THE CONTRACT CAREFULY Do not commit yourself to 6 months costs as you may wish/need to move your pet to another quarantine kennel which is permitted. If you need to move your animal your contract is binding. Never sign a faxed letter or agreement sent by the quarantine kennel as often the back page with the small print is omitted. Do not pay 6 months fees in advance as it is unlikely you will have it reimbursed. Never sign faxed contracts (often the back page with all the small print is omitted.) Members have been caught on this many times.
12. Visiting is essential - only you will notice problems with your pets.
13. Keep copies of all correspondence.
Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (D.E.F.R.A.), 1 Page Street, London SW1P 4PQ. Tel:0207 904 6000
You can e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org
or write to our London address:
PASSPORTS FOR PETS
Flat 11, 45 Queen's Gate
London SW7 SHR
Tel: (+44) (0)20 7589 6409
Fax: (+44) (0)20 7589 6403