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We are travelling from Ontario Canada to Nova Scotia Canada on Fri. Last leg of the trip will be Sunday. We can take hundreds of miles and many hours off the trip IF we take the ferry boat from St. John's New Brunswick to Digby Nova Scotia. Did it 12 years ago and the exhaust fumes below deck where the cars are were unbelievable.

Dogs are required to travel in cages below deck where the cars are. I was told they have now installed outside air vents. It's approx. a 3 hour crossing plus time loading and unloading vehicles. I'm really concerned because Duchess seems to be sensitive to drugs like gravol and benedryl (prescribed dosage is too strong-knocks her right out) so I'm concerned about the exhaust fumes.

Have any of you done this ferry ride with your dobe in the last year or two? How was it?

It would be great to shorten the trip for her, but not at the cost of making her sick-or worse.
 

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terriorist entertainer
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I live on a large island....so the only ways here are ferry, and flying. Whenever I have my dog with me, I take the ferry and it's the same rules you have. All of my dogs so far have traveled well on the boat. The security staff check on them frequently during the trip (It takes 10hrs).

There was a recent case where two show rotties were kept in the car rather than the cages and one died of carbon monoxide poisoning as it was parked on an upper car deck. To my knowledge, there has never been a problem with dogs kept in the cages as they are positioned with ventilation, and due to the regular supervision.
On one trip I did, the owner of a Labrador was called to the officers desk as the dog was passed out, which turned out to be due to over sedation by the owners. The dog was constantly monitored for problems (and the owners asked to reduce the dose on any subsequent trips). So they keep a close eye on them.
Due to my frequent travels with Zil backwards and forwards, security got to know both of us and would give me frequent updates. Zil loved traveling on the boat as the car decks are quite warm and the rocking and vibration seems to send them off to sleep. He would jump into the cage and curl up straight away quite relaxed. (I was told he often would only bother to open one eye when security came to check him and refill the water tray, and promptly go back to sleep.)

Longwinded, I know....but use the cages, don't be tempted to leave your dog in your car.

Spirit of Tasmania denies dog poisoning claim
 
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