From reunions in Stoupa to Athens, to meet Pouca the cat

When Animalcouriers reached Greece by ferry from Italy, our first stop was Stoupa, to reunite cats Mr Pickles and Douglas, and dogs Murphy and Twiglet with Sharon. Overnight accommodation in the area is a bit sparse at this time of year but we were lucky enough to end up in a rather nice little cottage.

With the weather howling and storming outside, we took advantage of the open fire which had been laid ready for us. Along with the firewood was a plastic bag full of amazingly effective firelighters — pieces of cardboard soaked in olive oil. Sacrilege! we hear you cry, using Kalamata extra virgin oil in this way. But the smell suggested the oil had already been used for cooking. So in fact, an excellent approach to recycling and less grease down the drains.

From Stoupa we drove through the hills towards Athens via Kalamata. We stopped for coffee in a small mountain village between Kalamata and Athens to look around a tiny church that caught our eye. A local lady passed us with her flock of ewes and their lambs, bringing traffic to a halt while she chatted with a number of villagers before guiding her flock off the road.

In Athens we headed to the port to meet up with Eugenia’s cat Pouca. This dear little tortie girl was brought to us by boat by a friend of Eugenia’s. Pouca seemed quite unfazed by her journey and simply ready for cuddles and supper!

Our olive-oil firelighters. Courier M says he uses something similar at home — kitchen roll used to wipe out the frying pan. But Mrs M objects somewhat to the smell of fried bacon and onion!

Our olive-oil firelighters. Courier M says he uses something similar at home — kitchen roll used to wipe out the frying pan. But Mrs M objects somewhat to the smell of fried bacon and onion!

We are very aware of the difficult lives led by stray cats around dustbins. As we left Stoupa we spotted a group of 12 or more round this bin. Even though we approached very slowly, most of them scuttled away over the wall, leaving just a handful on guard. Who were rewarded with some cat treats.

We are very aware of the difficult lives led by stray cats around dustbins. As we left Stoupa we spotted a group of 12 or more round this bin. Even though we approached very slowly, most of them scuttled away over the wall, leaving just a handful on guard. Who were rewarded with some cat treats.

Driving through the hills behind Stoupa en route for Kalamata, we passed many beautiful wild flowers. We think these may be orchids.

Driving through the hills behind Stoupa en route for Kalamata, we passed many beautiful wild flowers. We think these may be orchids.

Wonderfully bright poppies

Wonderfully bright poppies

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Daisies are hard to beat for that spring-time feeling

Wish we knew what these striking flowerheads are. Any ideas?

Wish we knew what these striking flowerheads are. Any ideas?

Mimosa (we think)

Mimosa (we think)

Traffic jam in the mountains

Traffic jam in the mountains

We thought this little church was derelict when we first caught sight of it…

We thought this little church was derelict when we first caught sight of it…

…but on pressing our noses to the glass in the door, we saw its marvellous tiny interior

…but on pressing our noses to the glass in the door, we saw its marvellous tiny interior

Ancient-looking paintings inside

Ancient-looking paintings inside

Some paintings were made directly on the stonework

Some paintings were made directly on the stonework

Graffiti at the church's entranceway

Graffiti at the church’s entranceway

Eugenia's friend arrives with Pouca

Eugenia’s friend arrives with Pouca

Pouca peeping out, keen to know what's going on

Pouca peeping out, keen to know what’s going on

Pouca is such a pretty little girl! We discovered she's missing a leg and part of her tail. She's cuddly, purrs loudly, and loves eating!

Pouca is such a pretty little girl! We discovered she’s missing a leg and part of her tail. She’s cuddly, purrs loudly, and loves eating!

Collecting Blair and Putin in Germany for their trip to the UK

At much the same time as couriers J and M reached Greece, courier S found herself in rather exalted company in Berlin.

Blair and Putin have been living in this fine capital city for a couple of months while their passports and travel arrangements were finalised. With promises of a large garden and fresh west country air to look forward to at their new UK home, these two cats are anticipating good times ahead.

They’re proving the perfect travel companions, sharing a hotel room with courier S last night and everyone enjoying snacks in bed. This morning they’ll cross to the UK by Eurotunnel, and spend the night in Surrey before being reunited with their owners tomorrow.

Handsome black-and-white Blair

Handsome black-and-white Blair

Gorgeous Russian Blue Putin

Gorgeous Russian Blue Putin

Like the Swiss, the Germans are also lucky enough to have Easter egg trees!

Like the Swiss, the Germans are also lucky enough to have Easter egg trees!

A colourful sight that brightens up a somewhat grey day

A colourful sight that brightens up a somewhat grey day

Bibi and Odin are reunited in Switzerland, and Ruben, Hugo, Red and Jim arrive in France

After reuniting cats Fleur and Mittens with their owners, Mike and Debbie, in Normandy, we drove into Switzerland to deliver Bibi and Odin to Alan and his family. It was hard to say who was more excited at the reunion — humans or dogs!

Then it was back into France to drop handsome trio Ruben, Hugo and Red at Le Jardin des Chats, a super cattery in the Montpellier area, where they’ll have a short stay until their owner Susan catches up with them. And we left Gentleman Jim with mutual friends, for collection by his owner Faith.

The next day, with Mr Pickles, Douglas, Twiglet and Murphy still on board, we motored on to Italy, staying the night in Florence before heading to the port to catch the overnight ferry to Greece.

Bibi and Odin were so excited at being back with Alan and his wife that they quite forgot all their good manners for a few moments!

Bibi and Odin were so excited at being back with Alan and his wife that they quite forgot all their good manners for a few moments!

But it really didn't take long for all that training to kick back in

But it really didn’t take long for all that training to kick back in

Proof that in Switzerland Easter eggs actually grow on trees

Proof that in Switzerland Easter eggs actually grow on trees

Easter bunnies collect the eggs and deliver them to all the boys and girls (and grown-ups!) who've been good so far this year

Easter bunnies collect the eggs and deliver them to all the boys and girls (and grown-ups!) who’ve been good so far this year

Mr Pickles (top) and Douglas are just about the nosiest pair of cats who've ever travelled with us!

Mr Pickles (top) and Douglas are just about the nosiest pair of cats who’ve ever travelled with us!

Meet our passengers from the UK: Odin, Bibi, Murphy, Twiglet, Mr Pickles, Douglas, Jim, Hugo, Ruben, Red, Fleur and Mittens

Animalcouriers set off from the UK with a fine group of feline and canine passengers on board.

Odin and Bibi are travelling with us to Switzerland, to join Alan and his family. Although they’ll primarily be the family’s pets, they’ve also been trained by Len from K9 Protector to protect and look after all the family members. Len says he’s really enjoyed training these two — we must say, they are a very soft and friendly pair of dogs.

Family of four Mr Pickles, Douglas, Murphy and Twiglet are relocating with Sharon to Greece. Their journey started in Devon, and their new home is in the hills just south of Stoupa, with wonderful sea views to enjoy.

Tuxedo cat Jim joined us for one of his regular trips from London to the south of France. Now 15 years old, he sadly recently lost his twin brother Jules, and is travelling alone for the first time. We’re pleased to say he’s very relaxed and taking everything in his stride.

Three more familiar faces are also on board: Hugo, Ruben and Red. This trio of cats travelled with us from the Languedoc to York last year. But their owner, Susan, missed the warmth of the south of France, so the family are now on their way back, and will be managing a campsite at Saint Mandrier sur Mer.

Mum and daughter Fleur and Mittens are on their way to Normandy, to be reunited with Mike and Debbie. The two cats homeboarded with us while Mike and Debbie went on ahead to get everything ready for their arrival.

Trainer Len admitted to an especially soft spot for Bibi and said he'll really miss her

Trainer Len admitted to an especially soft spot for Bibi and said he’ll really miss her

Handsome Odin is a little younger than Bibi. Len says that he very much followed Bibi's lead during training.

Handsome Odin is a little younger than Bibi. Len says that he very much followed Bibi’s lead during training.

Twiglet (L) and Murphy (R) soon get settled in

Twiglet (L) and Murphy (R) soon get settled in

Mr Pickles has a head for heights — here he is sitting on top of the box in the compartment he's sharing with Douglas

Mr Pickles has a head for heights — here he is sitting on top of the box in the compartment he’s sharing with Douglas

Dear Douglas has no tail and not many teeth — so obviously his favourite activities are jumping around and eating!

Dear Douglas has no tail and not many teeth — so obviously his favourite activities are jumping around and eating!

Douglas gets a tickle…

Douglas gets a tickle…

…and Mr Pickles wants in on the action, too!

…and Mr Pickles wants in on the action, too!

Gentleman Jim (who bears more than a passing resemblance to Mr Pickles) in pensive mood

Gentleman Jim (who bears more than a passing resemblance to Mr Pickles) in pensive mood

Creamy ginger brothers Ruben (L) and Hugo (R)

Creamy ginger brothers Ruben (L) and Hugo (R)

Tired of posing, Ruben and Hugo gently nod off

Tired of posing, Ruben and Hugo gently nod off

Fluffy Red is a more nervous character than either of his brothers, but is starting to relax

Fluffy Red is a more nervous character than either of his brothers, but is starting to relax

Fleur, perhaps showing how she got her name?

Fleur, perhaps showing how she got her name?

Mittens on arrival at their new home in Normandy, taking a close look at the front door

Mittens on arrival at their new home in Normandy, taking a close look at the front door

Now it's Fleur's turn to examine the front door. You can see both cats thinking: we came in this door, so logically… Both did a lot of scurrying and sniffing — a cat's flight instinct drives it to try and run away, perhaps back to where it came from? But as is the case with many of our cat passengers, within an hour or so, they were well settled in thanks to familiar smells and the sound of their owners' voices. Debbie and Mike will keep them in for about three weeks to give them a chance to adapt properly to their new environment.

Now it’s Fleur’s turn to examine the front door. You can see both cats thinking: we came in this door, so logically… Both did a lot of scurrying and sniffing — a cat’s flight instinct drives it to try and run away, perhaps back to where it came from? But as is the case with many of our cat passengers, within an hour or so, they were well settled in thanks to familiar smells and the sound of their owners’ voices. Debbie and Mike will keep them in for about three weeks to give them a chance to adapt properly to their new environment.

Safe homecomings in the UK for Bob, Ben, Missy and Mabel; and Pica and Trebol

Dave and Christine’s family of four, dogs Bob and Ben, and cats Missy and Mabel, recently travelled with us from Nerja in Spain to Lincolnshire in the UK. Christine wrote to let us know all four arrived in good spirits:

“Our gang are settling in at the new home. They all look in good health and I just wish they could tell me of their adventures en route to get here.

Bob and Ben can’t believe they have a nice big garden of their own and have been going in and out all afternoon. They have also been for a walk across a nearby field. Now worn out and sound asleep either side of me on the sofa.

Missy and Mabel wanted lots of fuss and reassurance. After exploring the house and finding their litter tray and food and water bowls, they settled down for a snooze.

I can’t thank you enough for looking after our precious pets on their long journey.”

And Pica and Trebol, who travelled with us from Madrid, were happily reunited with their owner Gonzalo.

Missy enjoying the view from the window

Missy enjoying the view from the window

Ben checking out a flower pot

Ben checking out a flower pot

Bob sniffing around a border in the garden

Bob sniffing around a border in the garden

Trebol eyeing up some snuggly looking fleeces

Trebol eyeing up some snuggly looking fleeces

Pica quickly chilled out in their new home

Pica quickly chilled out in their new home

Jake, Bob, Minnie and Polly swap snowy Doncaster for sunny Australia

When Debra and family decided to head home to Australia, they were definitely not leaving their two dogs and two cats behind in the UK. These much loved pets are somewhat senior travellers — the cats, Polly and Minnie, are 15 and 14 years old respectively; and Bob the dog is also 14. Jake the terrier is quite the baby of the bunch at just seven years old.

Animalcouriers arranged their flights and the pets spent 10 days in quarantine at Eastern Creek, Sydney. From there they flew via Adelaide to Port Lincoln in South Australia, where the family has relocated.

Debra sent some photos of the pets at home and told us:

“All four animals arrived safe and well. They are all settling in to their new home. I cried when I saw them! Thank you so much for all your great planning and organising. You did a wonderful job and I will definitely recommend you. It is amazing to think they travelled from the other side of the world.”

Jake already has his paws under the table

Jake already has his paws under the table

Which dot shall I pounce on?

Which dot shall I pounce on?

Bob and feline chum getting the lay of the land

Bob and feline chum getting the lay of the land

Debra battled through snow as she went back and forth to the vet in the UK to sort out the final paperwork and parasite treatments. Two weeks later it was wall-to-wall sunshine for everyone, with a wonderful sea view across Spencer Gulf

Debra battled through snow as she went back and forth to the vet in the UK to sort out the final paperwork and parasite treatments. Two weeks later it was wall-to-wall sunshine for everyone, with a wonderful sea view across Spencer Gulf

Sucre from Spain crosses the Channel with us, heading for Wales

On the way back from delivering the fabulous furry family of three dogs and four cats to their new French home in Brittany, Animalcouriers headed to Caen to collect Chihuahua Sucre.

Sucre had travelled from Spain with his owners, but when they reached the port of Caen, it was discovered that Sucre’s pet passport wasn’t valid for entry to the UK. So he had to stay in kennels until the 21-day period after his rabies vaccination had elapsed. Fortunately, the timing worked out perfectly for Sucre to travel back with us to the UK this week.

Courier S and Sucre took the overnight ferry to Portsmouth, then carried on by road to Bristol, where they met up with Sucre’s delighted owners for the last leg of the journey to their new home in Wales.

Sweet little Sucre snuggles down for the journey

Sweet little Sucre snuggles down for the journey

A valiant try for 'longest tongue' but sorry, Sucre, you probably get the wooden spoon!

A valiant try for ‘longest tongue’ but sorry, Sucre, you probably get the wooden spoon!

A very happy reunion in Bristol for Sucre and his owners

A very happy reunion in Bristol for Sucre and his owners

Daisy, Bella, Porscha, Le Roi, Mr Jinks, Tallulah and Ellie Mae swap Ireland for France

This family of three dogs and four Maine Coon cats, nicknamed the ‘fabulous furries’ by courier S, arrived at their new French home in Brittany yesterday.

Their journey started in Mooncoin, in Ireland, where Animalcouriers collected them 10 days ago. They stopped over at Burntwood Kennels in Surrey, before undertaking the second leg of their trip to France.

Their owners took the 24-hour ferry from Dublin to France in very rough seas, poor things. Meanwhile, their pets took the shorter (and calmer) crossing from Dover to Calais and travelled on to Brittany by road.

Daisy, a beautiful Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, snored her way through the journey, completely at ease on her big adventure

Daisy, a beautiful Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, snored her way through the journey, completely at ease on her big adventure

In maternal mode, lovely Newfoundland Bella made sure the rest of the family were all settled and happy before allowing herself to completely relax

In maternal mode, lovely Newfoundland Bella made sure the rest of the family were all settled and happy before allowing herself to completely relax

Le Roi and Mr Jinks giving courier S a rather dark brown look!

Le Roi and Mr Jinks giving courier S a rather dark brown look!

All four cats are breathtakingly beautiful

All four cats are breathtakingly beautiful

Even the customs officers at the border were struck by their exceptional looks

Even the customs officers at the border were struck by their exceptional looks

Reunion in France for two big girls and their dad

Reunion in France for two big girls and their dad

The Newfoundland is a magnificent breed — here's Porscha who, like Bella, weighs in at over 80 kilos. Porscha is both a live wire and gentle and obedient as a lamb — and clearly delighted to be reunited with her dad

The Newfoundland is a magnificent breed — here’s Porscha who, like Bella, weighs in at over 80 kilos. Porscha is both a live wire and gentle and obedient as a lamb — and clearly delighted to be reunited with her dad

Humbug and Nutter fly to Bermuda, and Mussik is reunited in England

Animalcouriers ended 2014 with a puppy flying to Bermuda, and started 2015 in the same way!

During a brief visit to the UK in November, Rachael and her family chose bouncy black-and-white Cockerpoo puppy Humbug. They had to wait until December for Humbug to be old enough to fly to Bermuda to join them. She flew with BA, who accept puppies and kittens from the age of 10 weeks. Rachael wrote to say:

“Humbug arrived safe and well, full of beans. Thank you so much for all your hard work arranging her safe arrival to us — we are thrilled.”

Then in early January Nutter made the same trip. This gorgeous Rottweiler puppy homeboarded with us before his flight and was the perfect houseguest. His family had to get special permission from the Bermuda government to import a Rottweiler as certain breeds are restricted on the island.

Just last week we also heard from Anastasia, whose beloved cat Mussik travelled with us from Portugal to the UK. She tells us:

“Many thanks for taking such good care of Mussik and for providing such a great service. Mussik is very happy in his new home and seemed to feel comfortable very quickly in his new surroundings. I wish you all the best for your future clients and journeys and like everyone I will have no hesitation in using your service again and recommending it to others.”

Humbug enjoys a snuggle with her new family

Humbug enjoys a snuggle with her new family

Nutter while homeboarding with Animalcouriers

Nutter while homeboarding with Animalcouriers

Enjoying playing in the autumn leaves

Enjoying playing in the autumn leaves

Nutter arriving in Bermuda

Nutter arriving in Bermuda

Mussik and Anastasia very happy to be reunited in London

Mussik and Anastasia very happy to be reunited in London

Four cute puppies from Cyprus need new homes

Amanda recently contacted us for help in finding forever homes for four abandoned puppies she rescued last year in Cyprus and has been looking after ever since. It’s estimated that these lovely ‘Heinz 57′ youngsters were born in early August, so they’re now about five months old. Help with the cost of transporting them to new homes is available.

Amanda tells us:

“On a hot Cyprus September afternoon, six hungry and thirsty puppies were found abandoned in a cardboard box by the side of a dusty track. Two puppies found happy new homes here in Cyprus to start their second-chance lives, but four are still looking for their forever families.

These two boys and two girls are completely unspoiled, enjoy meeting new people and dogs, are used to being tormented by our many household cats, and are happy to be alive! They are up to date on vaccinations, are microchipped and will be neutered in February.

All transportation costs to their new homes will be met. They can travel abroad from mid-April.”

If you can offer any of them a new home, please email: malanda472@aol.com

Red

Red

Rupert

Rupert

Lulla

Lulla

Lizzie

Lizzie

Amanda's poster looking for new homes for the 'second-chance puppies'

Amanda’s poster looking for new homes for the ‘second-chance puppies’