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Exploring the Pet-Friendly Side of London: A Guide for Animal Lovers

Updated: Jun 26

Living in London is a dream for many people around the world.

There are various reasons why London is such an attractive destination for many expats. Some people see a move to London as a new and exciting opportunity for them and their loved ones, while others view it as a fresh start. Whatever your reason may be for deciding to pack up and move to London, you wouldn’t want to start this new chapter in your life without your precious pet.

Advance planning for your upcoming move to London is crucial. It will require careful planning and research to find a suitable place to live. Finding a pet-friendly rental property, especially one that is dog-friendly, can be very challenging. Pet-friendly rentals in London are limited and tend to get snapped up very quickly.

Many landlords don’t allow pets; because of this, the high demand for pet-friendly rental properties has pushed rental prices through the roof. It would be a good idea to set up a “pet CV” for your pets and send it out with rental applications. A CV for your pet and a reference from your previous landlord are two good ways to persuade landlords that you and your pet are responsible tenants. You can use the CV as an opportunity to talk about your pet’s behaviour and personality. Despite the challenges pet owners face in finding reasonably priced housing, London is one of the most pet-friendly cities in the world.

Provided your dog is well-behaved and kept on a lead at all times, they will be allowed to travel for free on the London Underground Tube Network. Some of the black cabs and London buses will also accept a pet on board, but only if the driver allows it. If you decide to take the London Underground, it is important to keep in mind that smaller breed dogs have to be carried on the escalators to prevent damage to their paws, and larger breed dogs have to use the stairs. It is, however, important to educate yourself about the layout of the stations so that you can adapt your trip accordingly. Some stations have stairs, while others only have escalators.

The pace of London is frenetic at times, and you might just want to take some time out with your pet every so often. Taking time out is very easy when you are living in London because roughly 47% of the Greater London area is green space, offering tranquil settings for a picnic, a walk, or just lazing around. Dogs are welcome in most of London's parks and green spaces as long as they are kept under control and you clean up after them.

Whilst you are out and about, if you fancy a Saturday lunch or a Sunday brunch, you will find numerous pet-friendly cafés, restaurants, and bars scattered around the city. Some of the restaurants have even started catering to beloved canines. They have special water and treat bowls for their four-legged clients, and some even have a special “pooch” section on their menus. Every day, more and more of London’s prestigious restaurants are welcoming well-behaved dogs into their fine establishments.

If you fancy the hustle and bustle of big city living, London might just be the perfect place for you and your precious pet to settle and call home…

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