WHEN IN FRANCE

Living France - - The Essentials -

VETS

Ve­teri­nary clin­ics in France are eas­ily iden­ti­fied, in a sim­i­lar man­ner to French phar­ma­cies, by a big sign above the door with a blue cross on a white back­ground.

Many pet own­ers reg­is­ter their an­i­mal with a lo­cal vet and re­ceive a ‘ car­net de santé’ which keeps a record of vac­ci­na­tions and treat­ments. This is the French pet passport (part of the Euro­pean pet passport sys­tem), and you’ll need it if you’re plan­ning to take your pet in and out of the coun­try.

It’s ad­vis­able to con­tact two or three ve­teri­nary clin­ics to com­pare their of­fer and prices as vets in France are free to de­ter­mine their own fee struc­ture, and prices can vary sig­nif­i­cantly. For help or ad­vice, you could con­tact the Fédéra­tion des Syn­di­cats Vétéri­naires de France or the Or­dre National des Vétéri­naires which to­gether rep­re­sent the in­ter­ests of French vets.

Ac­cord­ing to the French com­par­i­son web­site Que Choisir, the av­er­age ve­teri­nary costs for cats and dogs are as fol­lows: • Con­sul­ta­tion fee: €35 - €50 • Vac­ci­na­tions: dogs €50 - €70,

cats €60 - €80 • Cas­tra­tion/ster­il­i­sa­tion: male dog €120 - €200, male cat €70, fe­male dog €180 - €250, fe­male cat €120 - €150 • Iden­ti­fi­ca­tion chip: €50 • Worm treat­ment: €20 per year As for pet health prod­ucts, such as flea con­trol or sham­poos, you will of­ten find them sold at cheaper prices in phar­ma­cies or pet shops than in ve­teri­nary surg­eries.

AN­I­MAL PROTECTION

The So­ciété Pro­tec­trice des An­i­maux (SPA) was set up more than 150 years ago and now has around 60 an­i­mal shel­ter cen­tres across the coun­try. A state-ap­proved and as­sisted or­gan­i­sa­tion, it of­fers sub­sidised ve­teri­nary care for pet own­ers who are low earn­ers and can’t af­ford stan­dard vet fees. For ex­am­ple, it of­fers vac­ci­na­tions for around €15 and ster­il­i­sa­tion for €40.

The SPA also plays a key role in the protection of an­i­mals, han­dling over 700 com­plaints about cru­elty per year. If you are con­cerned about the mis­treat­ment of an an­i­mal in France, you can ei­ther con­tact the lo­cal po­lice or the SPA di­rectly.

AN­I­MAL SIT­TING

The one down­side cited by those sur­veyed is the dif­fi­culty find­ing some­one to take care of their pets when­ever they go away. Some ken­nels and cat­ter­ies ex­ist in France, but not that many. How­ever there are var­i­ous sites where you can find a pet sit­ter. If en­quir­ing about ken­nels, don’t use the word ken­nel as this refers to breed­ing ken­nels in France – the word you want is a pen­sion d’an­i­maux.

PET IN­SUR­ANCE

Pet health in­sur­ance ( as­sur­ance santé an­i­mal) is avail­able in France, as in the UK, through a num­ber of in­sur­ance com­pa­nies, some spe­cial­is­ing in the sec­tor. It is also a good idea to add any an­i­mal that could in­ad­ver­tently cause an ac­ci­dent to a third party to your as­sur­ance de re­spon­s­abil­ité civile (civil li­a­bil­ity in­sur­ance).

As stated above, this is manda­tory for own­er­ship of cat­e­gory 2 dogs.

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