Dog friendly London Underground

Discussion in 'Dog Friendly' started by JulieT, Nov 3, 2013.

  1. JulieT

    JulieT Registered Users

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    The tube is definitely dog friendly. I thought this might be of interest if anyone is heading to London - you can get around on the tube with a dog just fine.

    Been meaning to post this for a while, but only remembered my camera today.

    The rules are:
    “You can travel with any dog or domestic animal, unless there is a good reason for us to refuse it (such as if the animal seems dangerous or is likely to upset other customers). You must keep it under control on a lead or in a suitable container, and must not allow it on a seat. Staff can't take charge of any animal.You must carry animals on moving escalators or through automatic ticket gates.”

    The signs at the bottom of escalators actually say “dogs must be carried”! Prompting this video where people dressed as LU staff challenge people for not carrying dogs: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CqXTzZVTs5o ;D ;D ;D

    Escalators

    Escalators aren’t a problem, because it’s easy to find a station with steps or a lift and at least in central London the stations are quite close together so you will normally have a choice of where to start and stop your journey. Obviously, some stations are very deep, so you do need to plan your exit unless you don’t mind walking up hundreds of steps!

    You do need to be ok walking up and down flights of stairs with your dog on a lead.

    It’s easy to find information about access at each station, because the information is available for wheelchair users. You can use the journey planner and tick “I can use stairs but not escalators” or “step free access”:
    http://journeyplanner.tfl.gov.uk/user/XSLT_TRIP_REQUEST2?language=en

    Ticket gates

    I thought the automatic ticket gates would be a problem, but turned out not to be really. The rules say you should carry your dog through the gates. This isn’t practical for me with a large dog.

    You cannot walk through the normal gates with your dog at your side, they are too narrow and close too quickly. It’s important not to risk getting the dog stuck in them. They close quickly and do not release when they meet a solid object. It’s painful to get stuck in them yourself and would be scary for a dog.

    The best is to find the modern wide gates for buggies that you can open with your ticket – you can walk through these with your dog at heel. Lots of stations have these, but it’s not possible to find out in advance which stations do and don’t.

    You can ask staff to open the old fashioned manual gates, although the rules say only people with assistance dogs may ask, but some stations are unmanned and in central London staff are often so busy helping tourists it isn’t practical to rely on asking staff to open the gate.

    [​IMG]
    old fashioned buggy gates by JulieTandCharlie, on Flickr

    The normal ticket gates are not as much of a problem as you might think – because dogs can squeeze under them.

    [​IMG]
    OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA by JulieTandCharlie, on Flickr

    So you can either tell the dog to wait, then go through the gate and get the dog to come after you, under the gate, once it is closed. Or you can send the dog ahead of you under the gate – this is easiest, as it’s easy to reach over the gate to hold the lead (which you can slip through the gap in the middle of the gate) while you use your ticket to go through.

    The journey

    Charlie never cared much about the noise of the tube - he grew up in London - and he thinks a tube journey is exciting. But it's still easiest to start with stations on the circle line, and district line, some of which are above ground and so the noise is no worse than a normal train.

    Here is Charlie on his commute - his home station is a district line tube, and the platforms are above ground.

    [​IMG]
    OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA by JulieTandCharlie, on Flickr

    The deeper stations underground are noisier as the tube comes in, the sound bounces round the long, thin, stations.

    London commuters generally don’t care that you have a dog on the tube. But they don’t want it to bother them, or get in their way. I keep tight hold of Charlie - he always wants to go say hello.

    Here he is dying to jump in that lady's large interesting looking bag... ;D ;D ;D

    [​IMG]
    OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA by JulieTandCharlie, on Flickr

    And any slobbering on city suits goes down very badly indeed. So if you have a slobbery Labrador who wants to say hello to people, your best bet is to head to the end of the carriage, and not the middle, because at the end of the carriages there are (on some lines) little inlets for the emergency doors to the next carriage. If you get your dog to sit in these, you can stand in front of him and it’s easier to stop him bothering people.

    [​IMG]
    In the gap at the end of a car on circle line by JulieTandCharlie, on Flickr
     
  2. charlie

    charlie Registered Users

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    Re: Dog friendly London Underground

    Well done Charlie such a good passenger :) We will never be attempting that, country folk here I'm afraid ::)
     
  3. Karen

    Karen Registered Users

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    Re: Dog friendly London Underground

    Brilliant write up Julie! Thanks so much. :)
     
  4. JulieT

    JulieT Registered Users

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    Re: Dog friendly London Underground

    [quote author=Karen link=topic=3148.msg33512#msg33512 date=1383502435]
    Brilliant write up Julie! Thanks so much. :)
    [/quote]

    Thanks! We enjoy our travels - and it's good to get into central London with him (where we can't drive). Just wish he wasn't so keen to say slobbery hellos to all tube commuters (some people don't like it for unfathomable reasons ;D) - hope that will wear off as he gets a bit older... ::)
     
  5. Oberon

    Oberon Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    Re: Dog friendly London Underground

    Honestly, I don't know what's wrong with people ;D

    That is an extremely helpful write-up! Great pics too. :D Great to heat that you are Charlie have conquered the Tube.
     
  6. bbrown

    bbrown Moderator Forum Supporter

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    Re: Dog friendly London Underground

    Gosh that's brilliant! He is such a townie ;D and sooooo well behaved :D
     
  7. JulieT

    JulieT Registered Users

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    Re: Dog friendly London Underground

    [quote author=bbrown link=topic=3148.msg33552#msg33552 date=1383512797]
    and sooooo well behaved :D
    [/quote]

    You know that's not true! You've met him! ;D ;D ;D
     
  8. bbrown

    bbrown Moderator Forum Supporter

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    Re: Dog friendly London Underground

    He sat still long enough for you to take several photos.....not bad, bless him :D
     
  9. Dexter

    Dexter Moderator Forum Supporter

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    Re: Dog friendly London Underground

    Julie,that's brilliant,the thought of it makes me a bit scared,I think it could literally be a train crash with Dex on board ;D just shows that it can be done and Charlie should be the Underground Poster Boy ;D
     
  10. kateincornwall

    kateincornwall Registered Users

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    Re: Dog friendly London Underground

    Fab write up Julie and brilliant photos of such a good boy Charlie , the well travelled Labrador puppy ;D
    Blimey , just imagining Mr.Cautious Sam , he freaked out getting on a tram in Dorset last year ::)
     
  11. drjs@5

    drjs@5 Registered Users

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    Re: Dog friendly London Underground

    Charlie is such a good boy.
    Very metropolitan :)
    I was initially wondering how you would persuade a dog onto the escalator ;D
    ....then realised that was the point ;D ;D
     
  12. JulieT

    JulieT Registered Users

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    Re: Dog friendly London Underground

    [quote author=drjs@5 link=topic=3148.msg33708#msg33708 date=1383596808]
    I was initially wondering how you would persuade a dog onto the escalator ;D
    [/quote]

    ;D

    Guide dogs for the blind ran a very long campaign to allow guide dogs on the London Underground escalators. The rest of us have to leg it up the stairs or wait for the lift!

    http://www.guidedogs.org.uk/support...s/london-underground-escalators/#.UngEl_m-2m4
     
  13. drjs@5

    drjs@5 Registered Users

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    Re: Dog friendly London Underground

    I am not a great fan of escalators.
    They are ok when quiet, but the squashing and pushing that can occur in rush hour London isn't my favorite thing to experience.
    Let alone with a dog.
    I guess training would be essential, but guide dogs are going to manage it if any dogs can!
     
  14. JulieT

    JulieT Registered Users

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  15. drjs@5

    drjs@5 Registered Users

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    Re: Dog friendly London Underground

    ;D ;D ;D ;D
    Thats hilarious!!
     
  16. Oberon

    Oberon Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    Re: Dog friendly London Underground

    Haha ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D
     
  17. Lisa

    Lisa Registered Users

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    Re: Dog friendly London Underground

    Great write up, Julie. I'm just sitting looking at the pictures and wishing that I could go on the Tube, never mind my dog.... :)
     
  18. NNorris13

    NNorris13 Registered Users

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    Re: Dog friendly London Underground

    Wow that's brilliant. I experienced the tube (and London) for the first time in December and was a bit overwhelmed so go Charlie! ;D

    My mum keeps talking of taking Dexter on the train here in Liverpool. I keep putting her off but this has got me thinking he will probably be ok :-D
     
  19. Merla

    Merla Registered Users

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    Re: Dog friendly London Underground

    That's excellent- what a pro Charlie looks!

    My husband when in his twenties lived on one side of London and worked on the other side, and used to commute with his Irish setter. He obviously wasn't as good at lateral thinking as you, Julie, as he took the signs literally and trained Izzie, the setter, to jump into his arms, one front leg on either shoulder while he hugged the back end!! And thus they would travel on the escalators ::) He used to cause a lot of pile-ups on in the opposite direction as city commuters looked up absent-mindedly from their papers to find a setter quizzically peering at them ;D
     
  20. JulieT

    JulieT Registered Users

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    Re: Dog friendly London Underground

    Lots of dogs go on trains, tubes and buses.

    I took Charlie on the tube when he was very young. We sat on the bridge with tubes going by when he was weeks old. Then inside the station, the at the top of the steps, then half way down the steps, onto the platform etc. he never cared about the noise and how busy it was, at all. I could probably have just taken him on the tube, one shot. But it was fun and part of his socialisation to hang around stations saying hello to people.

    Getting them to sit quietly on the tube or train and not bother people can be a challenge though. High value treats help, as always.
     

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