Five Tips for Keeping Pets in Portugal

Portugal is a great place to keep pets – or it certainly seems so when you see cats and dogs basking in the warm sunshine

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Portugal is a great place to keep pets – or it certainly seems so when you see cats and dogs basking in the warm sunshine.
 
However, there are cultural details relating to animals that you really do need to be aware of. Here are five helpful tips to get you started:
 
 

1. Feel free to adopt

If you’re an animal lover, and you’re keen to adopt a new pet, you’ll find plenty of options. Numerous animal charities, several managed by expat volunteers, are constantly on the lookout for people to house unwanted animals – you’ll find information locally or on Facebook groups.
 

2. Allow for the costs

The cost of vet bills in Portugal is perhaps lower than you’re used to, but it would be foolish to think that keeping any pet is an inexpensive endeavour. Some expats joke that they spend more on their animals than they do on themselves!
 
Make sure your budget does stretch to supporting an additional life in Portugal before taking on extra pets.
 

3. Expect strays in the countryside!

If you buy a place in the Portuguese countryside, it’s only a matter of time before you’ll get to meet the local cats, and possibly dogs too. These often have no fixed owner and no fixed abode - and it can be very tempting to adopt them. Vets will be able to find out if they have an identification chip.
 
However, stray animals are rarely castrated or spayed, and often have health issues. These can be a problem for your existing pets and/or result in vet bills. This doesn’t prevent many country-dwelling expats from supporting ever-growing menageries!
 

4. Watch out for poison

It’s a sad fact that some old-fashioned residents of Portugal still try to poison stray animals, but it unfortunately is a fact. Be watchful for suspicious meat left out to tempt dogs or other signs of poisoning attempts, and share any information with local animal lovers.
 

5. Learn about local dangers

Potential poisoning aside (which isn’t common, but still essential to know about), there are other animal dangers in Portugal that may not be familiar to you if you’ve moved from the UK. These include ticks and snakes. Speak to your vet for advice if you’re not familiar with these issues.

Further reading for Living In Portugal

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Finding work in Portugal

There are a number of ways that UK expats can fund their lifestyle in Portugal.
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Social life in Portugal

The best way to get settled in Portugal is to find out as much as you can about your new community.
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Heathcare

One of the first things you need to do once you arrive in Portugal is find out where your nearest hospital is.
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Education in Portugal

Are you emigrating to Portugal with school-age children?
 

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