For as many fantastic things that encompass long term travel, and there’s a hell of a lot of them, it can be a hassle sometimes.
To start, there’s that pesky issue of technically only being allowed to stay in Europe for 90 days. (That’s a highly over-simplified version of the visa rules, but the specifics are so long and boring and well, specific, but if you want to stay long term – legally – check this post out.) Anyway, on top of counting days in and out of the Schengen Area, buying/canceling onward tickets, all the research that goes into constantly going somewhere you’ve never been before, housesitting, converting language and currency, we added another layer: our pup, Lilly.
I touched on the process of bringing Lilly into Europe here, but I haven’t really gotten into her life on the road, because it’s not that much different from her life when we lived in Dallas or Denver.
We’re lucky she’s so small and has very little interest in anything besides cuddling with her dad. She’ll sit in a handbag if I want her to, and we take her into restaurants, in cabs, in Starbucks, in a lot of museums and attractions (like Château de Chenonceau), pretty much everywhere we go. We always ask before we bring her inside anywhere, and we haven’t gotten a no yet. (Side note: this may be because she’s so small and doesn’t make much noise? I don’t know if this would be ok with a bigger/more vocal dog.)
And I’m obviously biased, but being the cutest dog on the planet probably helps. We constantly get stopped for people to ask about her, and everyone wants to pet her little head. The English are fond of saying, “Well, helloooo gorgeous!”
As for her day to day life, it’s generally the same as it was before we started traveling. She meets more new humans and more dogs these days, and she goes on walks in different countries, but that’s about it. She’s so happy, and I’m thankful every day that we didn’t leave her at home. Sure, I can’t fly on the cheapest RyanAir or EasyJet or Norwegian flights (no dogs allowed – boooo), but my pup sleeps under the covers with me every night and that is decidedly worth the extra hassles.
Finally, I realize I’ve just written a large amount of words about my dog, and that potentially makes me a total loser, but if you’ve made it this far, congrats. Quite the accomplishment to read 400 words about someone else’s pet!