To be a dog in... Munich
Servus! My name is Uwe - [oooohveey] for those non-German speakers. I am an almost two-year-old wirehaired Kanninchen Dackel, or rabbit-sized dachshund. I live in Munich with my Irish-Bavarian humans
Germany is a pretty cool place to live as a dog – we are said to be loved more than children. I can go pretty much anywhere with my humans, and I normally do. So I get to go to every restaurant, bar, shop, festival, doctors surgeries – you name it, I can go there. I have even been to Ikea. The only places I am not allowed is the Oktoberfest and food shops. Although, some butchers’ can’t resist seeing a Dackel waiting outside, so I normally get invited in and also get a treat. Doggie nirvana!
Munich is a great place to be a dog, not least because I am a city dog with a country heart. On weekends, we wander around the city centre stores and food markets, where all the old folks stop to tell me how handsome I am and relay a story about how they had many, many Dackels in their lives. My favourite thing is when we get the tram to the city centre and I get to dig about in the grassy banks next to the tram stops looking for mice to chase.
Most weekends, we spend a day in the city and a day in the mountains by a lake. In general, dogs in Munich walk off the leash either beside their humans or running beside them when they cycle. My humans don’t allow me to do that as I am a little too excitable when I see another dog or, worse, a squirrel. I just want to run around and chase them.
I also love picnics. We all sit on the ground and, if I am well behaved, I get a few treats. Usually, I am an angel for a while, but then I get in trouble for eating duck poo and being sick. The best places in Munich to chase the ladies, moles and duck poo is the Englischer Garten, Olympia Park, the banks of the river Isar and Nymphenberg Schloss. Luckily, I live next to Nymphenberg palace and its gardens and take my morning walk there.
This weekend, we went to Olympia Park for a picnic and a really long walk. After that, we headed into the city centre for some pigeon chasing, a beer and a pretzel. I had some Ostrich jerky, and then we headed to the flower gardens where you pick your own flowers. That’s a lot of fun as there are so many mice and birds in there to chase.
I finish every day with a check through to palace gardens again, taking a different route through the forest, to check if anything has changed and ensure my pee scent is refreshed before nightfall.
I may be young, but I have travelled a lot. So far, I have been to Ireland, the UK, France, Belgium, Austria, Italy and Luxembourg. This week, I am going to Liechtenstein and Croatia. Smelling new places is the best, and the biggest differences between living in the UK and Germany is I am welcome almost anywhere. I can stay in pretty much any hotel, and I can even fly in the cabin within mainland Europe. Munich has a dog tax (€126/£108 per year), and that covers the provisions of poo bags, cleaning of dog-friendly areas and the general control of dogs in and around the city. The city council sends you a disc that you must wear with an ID number to show you have paid. Generally, dogs in Munich do not have health insurance like in the UK, instead we have a personal liability insurance in case we cause an accident or bite someone.
The one draw-back, which my humans and I hate, is that there are so many ticks in Munich, particularly in my local parks, because they are deer parks. It is essential to have monthly tick treatments from the vet. Every night, my humans check me for any ticks, and again in the morning as the ticks are sometimes too small to find at first. It also means a lovely all-over body massage!
I am so beat every day that I am normally asleep from 8pm, and the next morning at 6.30am I stretch out of bed and start it all again. Munich, you’re a good place to be a dog.
Dogs, if you would like to send us what it's like to live in your hood, get your human to contact us.