A Guide to Life with your Dog during Quarantine

A guide to life with your dog in quarantine blog NewDoggy.com

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A Guide to Life with your Dog during Quarantine

The world has been hit hard by COVID-19. These past few months have been difficult and frustrating. We’ve all had to adapt to lockdowns, quarantine, and social distancing. One bright side of having to stay home is that you can spend more time with your dog . . . but what happens if you’re in quarantine? Quarantine typically lasts around 14 days, but with a bored dog that time can stretch on endlessly. If you need to spend time in quarantine, we’ve put together some tips to help you and your dog make the best of it!

Is my dog at risk of infection?

Fortunately, there is absolutely no evidence that pets (including dogs) can catch COVID-19 so you don’t have to practise social distancing from your dog! Since the situation is still evolving, the authorities in your area may require animals to be tested as a precaution, but this really depends on where you live in the world.

There is a small chance that if someone coughed or sneezed over a dog, the dog could accidentally transmit the virus to another person, but this is very unlikely because the virus survives better on hard, non-moving surfaces such as glass and metal.

NOTE: although there were reports of an elderly dog testing “weakly” positive with COVID-19 in Hong Kong, the reason the dog tested positive was probably because it was around people who were shedding the virus. The dog showed no symptoms of disease; it died later on, most likely due to old age.

What to do if you are sick

If you are ill with COVID-19, try to limit contact with your dog: no petting, cuddling, or kissing. Focus on resting and caring for yourself; the sooner you get proper care, the sooner you can go back to caring for your pet. In the meantime, arrange for another person to feed and walk your dog. If you must interact with your pet, wear a face mask, and thoroughly wash your hands before and afterwards. You will need to take proper precautions to make sure that your dog’s carer does not get infected; consult your local health authorities, the WHO, or the CDC for advice.

Be prepared

You might not have the virus, but you should try to practise social distancing nonetheless. This means being prepared. Try to book any vaccinations or veterinary procedures that your pet needs before you go into self-isolation: most veterinary clinics are still open, albeit with altered hours or services.

Stock up on dog food and any medicine that your pet needs: supplies for two weeks should be sufficient. Many pet supply companies offer a delivery service, so you can stay home and order most of what you need. Don’t panic-buy every bag of dog food in site: plan ahead and think about what your dog will actually need. This should include medicines such as parasite preventatives, and perhaps some absorbent pads for urine/faeces.

Toilet Trouble

If you have a garden or yard, then your dog will be able to relieve him/herself more frequently, but if you don’t, your dog’s only chance to urinate/defecate will be on your walks. Some dogs will be fine with this, but most won’t. Unfortunately, you are probably going to have to teach your dog to urinate/defecate inside.

Most dogs have been taught not to do their business inside, and will be very reluctant to do so. You can lay down absorbent pee pads (a thick layer of newspaper on top of a plastic rubbish bag will do in a pinch); dogs that used these pads as puppies may remember these as a place where they can pee or poop.

You can also pretend that you are about to go on a walk: pick up the lead and walk your dog over to the area where the pads are. You may need to repeat this several times until your dog is ready to urinate/defecate. If they are showing signs that they are ready to go, such as circling or squatting, walk them over the pads. Praise and reward them if they use the pad. If you repeat this and reward your dog every time, he/she will soon get the idea. You’ll need to clean up your dog’s toilet area to keep your home hygienic, clean, and odour-free.

Beat the Boredom

For your dog, the worst part of lockdown and self-isolation will be boredom. You should stay home as much as possible during this time, but fortunately even areas that are in lockdown allow people to walk their dogs twice daily. Typically shorts walks of around 10-15 minutes are permitted, depending on local regulations. Please do your best to cooperate with local rules.

If you have a private yard or garden, then you’re in luck! You can sit with your dog outside and play together. You can also walk your dog around the garden on a lead, to mimic going on a normal walk. If you just need a change of scene, you can hang up a sheet to make a canopy, put down a blanket, and hang out with your dog in the garden (this is great fun if you have children). You can also use this space to create little obstacle courses or jumps for your dog: your dog might not be an agility champion but they’ll probably enjoy the challenge!

If you live in a flat or don’t have a garden, you can still find ways to enrich your dog’s life. They are plenty of puzzle toys on the market, and you can also make a few; for example, cut a few holes in a plastic bottle, put a few treats in, and let your dog figure out how to get the treats out. Another idea is take three plastic cups, hide a treat under one, shuffle the cups, and see if your dog can find the treat.

You can also use this time to train your dog. Maybe there are a few commands that need refreshing, or perhaps you want to teach a few cute tricks. You’ve now got some time to work on training. Some dog trainers may offer their services online, and you might be able to do a session over Skype. You can also independently research training methods and tips, or collaborate with other dog-owning friends for ideas.

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The following is needed to bring a puppy into Dubai:


  1. All dogs entering Dubai from a low-risk country at least 15 weeks old, and those entering from a high-risk country must be at least 27 weeks old.
  2. Microchip – All dogs entering and residing in Dubai must be equipped with either a 9 or 15 digit microchip.
  3. Import Permit – All dogs entering Dubai must be equipped with a Special Permit from the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment. Valid for 30 days.
  4. Vaccinations* – Depending on the country of origin, your pet might need a rabies shot on top of all the age appropriate vaccinations. Dubai specific vaccinations: Canine Distemper Virus, Canine Parvo Virus, Infectious Canine Hepatitis, Leptospirosis, Rabies.
  5. Rabies Titer Test * – All dogs entering Dubai must be tested for rabies no later than 14 days before the planned travel date. ( Only from specific
  6. Parasite check - All pets travelling to Dubai must receive preventive treatments against internal and external parasites in the 14 days before travel by an authorised and competent vet.
  7. Health Check – A Health Check by a veterinarian is mandatory in order to obtain permissions to enter Dubai.
  8. Pet Passport – This document verifies that the puppy is fully healthy and up-to-date on their vaccinations.


* The United Arab Emirates classifies all countries into two rabies categories:
  • Low-risk countries: Albania, Andorra, Australia, Austria, Bahamas, Bahrain, Barbados, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Falkland Island, Fiji, Finland, French Polynesia, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, South Korea, Kuwait, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Maldives, Malta, Marshall Islands, Mauritius, Micronesia, Montenegro, New Caledonia, New Zealand, Palau, Portugal, San Marino, Seychelles, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Suriname, Sweden, Switzerland, The Netherlands, UK, and Vanuatu.
  • High-risk countries: All other countries are considered high-risk countries.
** Only for puppies from high-risk countries
Travel Requirements

The following is needed to bring a puppy into Abu Dhabi:


  1. All dogs entering Abu Dhabi from a low-risk country at least 15 weeks old, and those entering from a high-risk country must be at least 27 weeks old.
  2. Microchip – All dogs entering and residing in Abu Dhabi must be equipped with either a 9 or 15 digit microchip.
  3. Import Permit – All dogs entering Abu Dhabi must be equipped with a Special Permit from the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment. Valid for 30 days.
  4. Vaccinations* – Depending on the country of origin, your pet might need a rabies shot on top of all the age appropriate vaccinations. Abu Dhabi specific vaccinations: Canine Distemper Virus, Canine Parvo Virus, Infectious Canine Hepatitis, Leptospirosis, Rabies.
  5. Rabies Titer Test * – All dogs entering Abu Dhabi must be tested for rabies no later than 14 days before the planned travel date. ( Only from specific
  6. Parasite check - All pets travelling to Abu Dhabi must receive preventive treatments against internal and external parasites in the 14 days before travel by an authorised and competent vet.
  7. Health Check – A Health Check by a veterinarian is mandatory in order to obtain permissions to enter Abu Dhabi.
  8. Pet Passport – This document verifies that the puppy is fully healthy and up-to-date on their vaccinations.


* The United Arab Emirates classifies all countries into two rabies categories:
  • Low-risk countries: Albania, Andorra, Australia, Austria, Bahamas, Bahrain, Barbados, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Falkland Island, Fiji, Finland, French Polynesia, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, South Korea, Kuwait, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Maldives, Malta, Marshall Islands, Mauritius, Micronesia, Montenegro, New Caledonia, New Zealand, Palau, Portugal, San Marino, Seychelles, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Suriname, Sweden, Switzerland, The Netherlands, UK, and Vanuatu.
  • High-risk countries: All other countries are considered high-risk countries.
** Only for puppies from high-risk countries
Travel Requirements

The following is needed to bring a puppy into Hong Kong:


  1. All dogs entering Hong Kong must be at least 3 months old.
  2. Microchip – All dogs entering and residing in Hong Kong must be equipped with either a 9 or 15-digit microchip.
  3. Import Permit – All dogs entering Hong Kong must be equipped with a Special Permit from the Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department. Valid for up to 6 months.
  4. Vaccinations* – Depending on the country of origin, your pet might need a rabies shot on top of all the age appropriate vaccinations. Hong Kong specific vaccinations: Canine distemper, infectious canine hepatitis, canine parvovirus and rabies.
  5. Health Check – A Health Check by a veterinarian is mandatory in order to obtain permissions to enter Hong Kong.
  6. Pet Passport – This document verifies that the puppy is fully healthy and up-to-date on their vaccinations.
  7. Captain’s Affidavit – Document to be provided by the airline personnel confirming that your dog has not left its crate or interacted with other pets at any point during the journey.


* Hong Kong classifies countries into 3 groups. Vaccinations against rabies are only required from Groups 2 & 3.
  • Group 1: Rabies-free countries (at least 6 months of residency) Australia, Fiji, Hawaii, Ireland, Japan, New Zealand, United Kingdom, Bailiwick of Jersey.
  • Group 2: Rabies-controlled (at least 4 months of residency) Austria, Bahrain, Bermuda, Canada, Cyprus, Finland, Germany, Guam, Italy, Luxembourg, Malta, Norway, Papua New Guinea, Seychelles, Solomon Islands, Spain, Switzerland, Taiwan, Vanuatu, Bahamas, Belgium, Brunei, Cayman Island, Denmark, France, Gibraltar, Iceland, Jamaica, Maldives, Mauritius, New Caledonia, Portugal, Singapore, South Africa, Sweden, The Netherlands, USA (Continental), Virgin Islands.
  • Group 3: All other countries.
** Only for puppies from high-risk countries
Travel Requirements

The following is needed to bring a puppy into Switzerland:


  1. All pets entering Switzerland must be equipped with a 15-digit microchip that is compliant with ISO 11784/11785.
  2. Dogs must be vaccinated against distemper.
  3. Rabies vaccinations are mandatory. Dogs must receive their first rabies vaccine at least 21 days before entering the country.*
  4. The state veterinarian of the origin country must equip the dog with a valid Health Certificate.
  5. Import Permit – all dogs entering from a 3rd level rabies country must carry an import permit issued at least three weeks in advance. Entry points through Basel, Geneva, Zurich.
  6. Different regulations depending on whether it is a commercial purchase or individual and where the dog is coming from.


* Specifications differ for booster shots. ** Switzerland categorises countries by level of risk of rabies in three levels.
  • Level 1: All EU Member States and Andorra, Switzerland, Faeroe Islands, Gibraltar, Greenland, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Monaco, Northern Ireland, Norway, San Marino, Vatican City State.
  • Level 2 (Low Risk of Rabies): Ascension Island, United Arab Emirates, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Australia, Aruba, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Barbados, Bahrain, Bermuda,Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba, Belarus, Canada, Chile, Curaçao, Fiji, Falkland Islands, Great Britain (including Crown dependencies), Hong Kong, Jamaica, Japan, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Cayman Islands, Saint Lucia, North Macedonia, Montserrat, Mauritius, Mexico, Malaysia, New Caledonia, New Zealand, French Polynesia, Saint Pierre and Miquelon, Russia, Singapore, Saint Helena, Sint Marteen, Trinidad and Tobago, Taiwan, United States of America, American Samoa, Guam, Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, British Virgin Islands, Vanuatu, Wallis and Futuna.
  • Level 3: All other countries are considered as having a high risk of rabies.
Travel Requirements