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UK ‘not dog-friendly’ claims report

FAR FROM being a nation of pet lovers, Britain fares worst among its European neighbours for being beastly to tourists with dogs, a new report says.

The study of 2,000 dog owners in Britain, France, Germany and Italy shows that most respondents believed Britain to be the least dog friendly. More than half of those polled in France named Britain as the worst culprit.

According to dog food manufacturers Winalot, who commissioned the poll, the attitude means that Britain missed out on £2.2 billion of tourist receipts because owners won't travel here due to the lack of dog-friendly facilities, despite the relaxation of quarantine laws and the introduction of the PETS Travel Scheme.

Asked why the UK is not considered dog friendly, dog owners said that Britons had the wrong attitude towards their pets, particularly in terms of offering adequate dog friendly facilities and services.

One third of all Germans, French and Italians said that they were actually put off coming to holiday in the UK for this reason.

Almost half (42 per cent) of Britons take their dogs with them when they holiday within the UK. But Brits were found to be the least likely to travel with their pet to other EU countries, whilst the Germans were the most likely to do so, followed closely by the Italians. German travellers say that domestically, pets are more than likely to given a doggie treat and a blanket in hotels or guesthouses.

According to Winalot, the top four dog friendly locations in Britain last year were Suffolk, Richmond, Dunbartonshire and Yorkshire. It named the Swan Hotel in Southwold, Suffolk, as the most dog-friendly hotel.

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