Taking a Rottweiler to France for your holiday? You might need to think again.
A few years back now we took our beautiful Blue, a rottweiler, to France for our family holiday. It was brilliant – she was happy being with us, we loved having her, and we particularly loved not worrying about leaving her with anyone else.
But it recently came to our attention, thanks to a comment on my ‘how to take your dog to France‘ post that Rottweilers are actually classed as a Category 2 Dangerous Dog in France (a list which includes defence and guard dogs – Staffordshire Terrier or American Staffordshire Terrier, Mastiff, Tosa, Rottweiler or Rottweiler like, in case of dogs without pedigrees).
We were pretty horrified – I mean, seriously? How could anyone class the huge pile of goofy softness that is our Blue a ‘dangerous dog’?
Thinking About Taking a Rottweiler to France
So I checked – and it’s true. Since 1st January 2010, all owners of dangerous dogs (category 1 and 2) in France must hold a certificate of aptitude for keeping a dangerous animal, delivered by an approved trainer, and a licence (permis de détention) for the animal, delivered by the town hall (mairie) of residence. Until a modification of the law to allow for a temporary derogation for category 2 dogs being imported into France, it is advised not to introduce such animals into France, whether on a temporary (holidays) or permanent basis. Sanctions may be incurred for absence of licence.
So in order to have a Category 2 ‘dangerous dog’ in France for a short holiday you need a licence from the local town hall, the dog has to have been inspected by an accredited French vet to attest to its character, and you need to have attended a two day certificated handling course.
So I contacted a the (really rather fabulous) Tourist Office in Duras, near which we stayed previously, to ask them what the regulations were on the ground for tourists with Rottweilers and other category 2 dogs. They weren’t really sure, but they did some persistent investigating on my behalf, and today have sent me the response from the Animal, Health & Environment Inspector.
” …Moreover, the introduction of dogs of the second category (American Staffordshire Terriers and Tosas registered in a herd book recognized by the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, Rottweilers or not registered with a herd book recognized by the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries Agriculture and fisheries) is possible, but circulation and detention rules apply.
The conditions necessary for the detention on French territory of category 2 dogs make it difficult, if not impossible, for these animals to be kept temporarily by foreign nationals during tourist stays.”
So – that’s it. You really can’t take your Rottweiler to France on holiday. Nor your Tosa, your Dogue de Bordeaux, your Staffie or in fact pretty much any Mastiff-type dog. You can see the full list of restricted dogs here.