Carrying your dog on a train
This is a question that pops up fairly often on online fora about the Indian Railways, and in this article, I try to simplify the process as well as provide links to blogs of other passengers who've successfully managed the process.
In a nutshell, here are the rules regarding carriage of a dog in a train:
- Dogs cannot be carried along with the passenger (you), unless you're travelling by First AC Sleeper or First Class Non-AC and have an entire four-berth coupe or two-berth cabin to yourself. If you do not have the whole cabin to yourself, the dog can be carried in the coach only with the approval of fellow passengers.
- If you aren't travelling by either of these classes, then the dog will have to travel in the dog box which is situated in the guard's van of every train (barring Shatabdi, Rajdhani and Duronto Expresses). Here are a few photos of a dog box:
- It is the responsibility of the passenger to feed the dog and take it for short walks at stations where the train halts for a suitable amount of time.
- As you can imagine, very few dogs will take kindly to being placed in a small, dark box in a train for several hours, and your dog is likely to emerge from the experience severely traumatised. If you can afford it, it is well worth the extra amount to travel First AC Sleeper or First Class Non-AC and have your dog travel with you.
- A luggage ticket must be purchased for your dog at the luggage office of your boarding station. As this might take a while, you should go early.
- If you're booking two berths in First AC Sleeper or First Class Non-AC, it's important that you are allotted a two-berth coupe. As this is not guaranteed, it is a good idea to meet the Chief Reservation Supervisor or Assistant Commercial Manager at your origin station and explain to him/her your need for a coupe. Carry a letter along with you that mentions your PNR number, date of journey, class of travel, and the fact that you're carrying a dog with you.
If you plan to carry a dog, you should definitely read this very detailed blog post (not by me) on the adventures of a passenger who carried a dog on the Calcutta Duronto Express at this link.
Last updated on 14 November 2013.