One of the great things about Vienna, Austria (and much of Europe) is it is so dog friendly!
James is ready for his first U-Bahn ride:
James is welcome on the public transportation and Vienna has buses (Autobus), local trains (Schnellbahn or S-Bahn), trams (StraÃŸenbahn and what I keep calling street cars) and underground/subway lines (U-Bahn).
Vienna’s public transportation works on an honesty system. There are no ticket barriers at stations and no formal ticket checks on trains, trams and buses. You just hop on and off. And since our last visit, they now have an app where you can buy tickets on your iPhone. Chris and I have unlimited tickets but when James goes with us I buy an additional discount ticket for James. James is considered a discount or half price ticket so he rides for â‚¬1,10 each way.
One of the rules for dogs on public transportation is James has to wear a muzzle. We knew this before we came to Vienna so we knew to shop for a muzzle ahead of time. I am really glad we did. James has a very long Poodle nose and some of the muzzles we tried in local stores just didn’t work. I went online and searched Poodle forums to see what other Poodle owners were recommending. Thankfully, someone mentioned Leerburg and we ordered a wire basket muzzle (the most popular style with Poodle owners). The muzzle was amazing – very well made and heavy duty. But it was a little too “much” for James. It just wasn’t going to work. Most dogs in Vienna have their muzzles tied to their collars or leashes and this one was so heavy it would have pulled on J’s collar. So I called up Leerburg and asked for their help. I ended up ordering two more muzzles to try out: the Jafco and the Baskerville. The Jafco turned out to be perfect – light weight, a nice rubber strap so it wouldn’t slip and it was white – so it didn’t look so bad on our cream boy.
I talked to James a little bit to make sure he was okay:
We tried the muzzle out a few times in DC and we knew mellow J would be fine with the muzzle. He did paw at it a little bit when we first put it on him. But now he wears it without any trouble at all.
On the U-Bahn (and I was more nervous than James was!):
On our way home that night, James was getting so much love and attention. Other riders were petting J and scratching his chin. It is interesting – I would have never touched a dog wearing a muzzle. I would assume they were mean. But over here it is normal for all of the dogs to wear muzzles on public transportation. We do see a few dogs without muzzles – Pugs and a few other little dogs. Maybe the rule isn’t strictly enforced. And I know Pugs have short noses so a good muzzle is probably hard to find for them!