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Pet Move of the Month: The Travels of Gordon the Horse

Wednesday, September 10, 2014 by PetRelocation.com Customer

gordonWhen Gordon's owner needed to move across the country from California to North Carolina, she decided to enlist our horse-relocating help.

Horse moves do require special arrangements: While dogs and cats need airline-approved travel crates and tickets on a pet-friendly airline (among other things), horses most likely need to be moved via ground transportation and have special paperwork requirements.

Here's an overview of how this Pet Move of the Month worked:

-Gordon traveled in an 8x9 box stall that featured a water bucket and hay on the ground. This size allowed him room to reach his head down and move around to find a comfortable travel position.

-The vehicle was stopped every four hours so that Gordon could be checked on and his water topped off.

-About halfway there, Gordon was given a comfort stop where he had the chance to move around in a private paddock and he was given more fresh hay, grain and water.

-As far as travel documents, Gordon needed a health certificate and a Coggins Results Form (here's more about horse travel requirements if you're interested).

A few days after the move was successfully completed, Gordon's trainer was kind enough to answer a few questions for us about his journey:

 Was this Gordon's first move?

Gordon has been moved within the area of Northern California, but never cross country. 

What were some of your initial concerns?

My primary concerns for Gordon were his older age, and his attachment to my horse who he wasn't shipped with. Gordon is more anxious than most horses and I was worried he would have a hard time relaxing. 

 

gordon frolicking

(He doesn't look very anxious here...)

 

What surprised you about the travel process, if anything?

Mostly I was surprised at how well PetRelocation and the equine shippers stayed in contact with me. They let me know daily that he was doing well.

How has Gordon handled the transition so far?

Gordon took about four days to fully settle in to his new barn, but is now back to his usual spunky self. 

What advice do you have for people who might be planning a horse move?

Try to put weight on your horse before the move, they will lose some during transport. As well, I would recommend ulcer guard for any high anxiety type of performance horses. 

 

gordon

Home!

 

--

Great job, Gordon! Read about other horse moves we've arranged, and please contact us if you're looking for assistance with a pet move of your own.

 

Exploring The Heathrow Animal Reception Centre

Tuesday, September 9, 2014 by Pet Friendly Airports

heathrowIn order to meet the import rules of the United Kingdom, all pets entering or re-entering the country must pass through one place: the Heathrow Animal Reception Center (HARC). It can be hard to know what to expect from facilities like this, but luckily there is quite a bit of information out there if you know where to look.

To save you some time, we've compiled several details about the HARC so that families going to the UK with pets will know what to expect. Hope this helps!

First, here's the process: upon arrival at Heathrow, pets are transferred to the HARC for their vet check and customs clearance -- a process that usually takes about 2-3 hours. After the check is finished, pets are released into the care of the designated pet owner or agent, who shows a photo ID.

The Centre is open every day (even holidays), but note that at busy travel times (around the winter holidays, for example), it can take longer to clear customs.

Here are a few fun facts about the HARC:

  • Around 13,000 dogs and cats pass through the Centre ever year.
  • About 2,500 birds (mostly pets) also visit.
  • 40 dogs can be held here at once.
  • The HARC employs about 30 full-time employees.
  • The Centre can also hold large animals (like horses) and exotic species (think lions and large reptiles).
  • A waiting room with sofas, TVs and vending machines is available for families waiting for their pets.

 

Here is where the HARC is located in relation to the airport (click on the map for a better look):

 

heathrow map

 

Want to know more? Take a look at a couple of videos touring the HARC:

 

 

 

For additional information, here's a list of frequently asked questions and tips relating to the HARC, and if you like cute pet reunion pictures (who doesn't?), follow them on Facebook and Twitter.

Please contact us if you have more questions about moving pets to the UK (or anywhere else), and happy traveling!

Relocating Pets: Moving Cats to the United States

Thursday, September 4, 2014 by Pet Travel Questions

Name: Iain
Number of Pets: 1
Pet Type: Cat
Pet Breed: Maine Coon
From: Australia
To: Michigan, USA

 

Hi,

We will be moving to Michigan for 3 years and I would like to confirm the requirements for moving our cat. If I read the info correctly we will not need a rabies vaccination prior to moving as we are a rabies free country but may need one upon arrival, please could you confirm as it is hard to find state requirements and anything else we will require?

Thanks,
Iain
 

Hi Iain,

Thanks for the question! The pet import requirements for the United States are less strict than those for many other countries, and you'll also need to meet the airline requirements (usually that means a vet health certificate stating your cat is healthy and fit to fly).

If you'd like to be thorough (which is always a good idea when it comes to pet travel), we recommend contacting a licensed veterinarian in Michigan to find out what the state laws are, as states vary from one to the other regarding rabies laws for cats.

When you return to Australia, your cat will need updated rabies vaccines and must meet a few other requirements (even though you started out there). There is also a 10-day quarantine on arrival. Here is an official link describing the pet import requirements for Australia.

If your cat is new to traveling, it may be helpful to read over these crate-training tips for cats. If you're interested in hiring some assistance for this move, you can fill out our free quote form to find out more about our services.

Thanks again for reaching out, and good luck with your move!

Pet News Round-Up: Pizza Cats and Sheep Dogs

Friday, August 29, 2014 by Caitlin Moore

Okay, then: this fake Pizza Hut is run by cats (in Japan).

You're on holiday. Can you/should you rescue that stray cat?

The mystery of how dogs herd sheep.

Crazy products you can buy to spoil your pet.

How to relocate your pets to a new country. How to relocate yourself to a new country.

Meet Mac and Bubba, two frequent pet travelers with lots of great tips to share.

 

 

amal

Have a good weekend!

Mac and Bubba's Adventures: Tips from a Pet Travel Pro

Thursday, August 28, 2014 by PetRelocation.com Customer

macMany of our clients end up hiring us more than once for help with moving their pets. Due to a particular job or just a love for adventure, they find themselves needing to relocate every few years and, of course, need to bring their pets along with them.

Mac and Bubba are getting ready to move for the second time with us (they've lived in Michigan, Mexico, and now they're off to Japan), and their owners have been amazing about passing along fun and informative pet travel details. We couldn't let such great info go unshared, so we asked them to divulge a few particularly helpful tips and stories to the rest of the pet travel community.

There is some truly top-notch advice here about how to settle in with pets in a new country and how to prep your pets for a relocation. Read on to hear all about Mac and Bubba's globetrotting adventures!

What are your tips for helping your pets prepare for and recover from a big move?

At this point, both Mac and Bub are pretty seasoned travelers. 

I've had Bubba (an 8-year-old tabby cat) with me long enough now that when boxes arrive at the house, he knows what's up. I can't say he's a fan of the whole process, but I can say he's all the better about it because I calmly keep him in the loop.

What I'm saying here is that I talk to my pets. Don't pretend you don't do this too. If you care enough about them to look into a pet relocation service, you almost certainly have assigned a voice to them in your head with which they respond back in your conversations. Bubba has always sounded a bit pompous and pious; so entitled about his automatic litter box that you almost want to pinch his cheeks at how adorably wrong he is.  

Point being, your pets know your voice: it's common and familiar to them. This proved crucial on our way to Mexico, particularly as there were a few things I was unprepared for in taking Bubs as my carry on.

I had to take him out of his carrier and carry him through TSA, and they asked me to take his collar off as well.  He had no identification on his neck for a few minutes.  I tried not to act scared as I clutched him like a bear-trap. As we traveled through the Detroit airport, we passed through the "Whale-Song" tunnel. If you're not familiar, it's an art installation between two gates that features a light show and whale-song recording. This, for a cat, is TERRIFYING. When we landed, the quick pressure change resulted in Bub's immediately emptying his entire bowel... from both ends*... I had to rinse him out in the airport bathroom sink before we went through customs, because of the stink.

 

buddy

 

The notable and important part of all of that was that talking to Bubba through all of it not only kept him calm(er) because I'm familiar and he trusts me, but it helped me keep my head on straight, too. And in a few of those instances, he relied on my soothing, cooing voice to calm him enough so as not to dig his tiny dagger-like cat claws into my shoulders and leave permanent nerve damage, thus forever ruining my killer tennis game.** 

*While I felt bad for the people who were seated near us because... holy smell, Batman -- I can say it made going through customs REALLY easy because... holy smell, Batman. They didn't want to deal with him so I got buzzed through pretty quickly.

**I'm really bad at tennis, but you get the point.

Obviously, talking to your dog is a great idea too (Mac, the 5-year-old Dober-mutt, has an inner monologue that sounds quite a bit like Dug from Up). Dogs love the attention, and they want constant reassurance that they get to come along for the ride. I've never seen Mac happier than when PetRelocation brought him to our front door in Mexico, he saw my face and realized HE GOT TO COME ALONG!  

What I recommend most about dogs in particular is teaching your dog some cues in the native language. Here's the thing; Mac is a ridiculously silly, snuggly dog. But he's also rather gigantic, and his Doberman genes are pretty visible in those waggly eyebrows of his. A large portion of our Mexican friends were legitimately frightened of our dog and his breed's stereotypes. But it was really fun to see that melt away as soon as we'd say "Mac, Dame Cinco!" Showing your new Spanish-speaking amigos how they can ask your dog for a high-five in a way they understand. Now he's learning Japanese for the same reason. (In case you were curious- high five: "O-Te", or "hand, please.")

 

mac

 

Above and beyond all of that, the number one thing I recommend before your move, is to learn about the culture you're going to and what that means for your pets. Find a RELIABLE SOURCE for this information -- I can't tell you how many Americans very confidently informed me that my dog was going to be abducted and turned into tacos... and now how many tell me Bubs will become sushi. Which... I mean come on, it's not only ignorant, it's just plain offensive (I will also confidently report that you absolutely CAN drink the water in Mexico).

Mexican and Japanese people keep pets, and those pets are well loved, just in a different cultural understanding. Within the industrial city of Mexico where we stayed, if you keep a dog, it is almost certainly purebred. It usually lives outside, and it's fairly uncommon to teach them any tricks or take them for walks. Cats are pets that no one really go out to purposely adopt, but happen in a more "a stray cat had kittens in my yard. Now I have cats." Again, this doesn't mean they're unloved. I've seen Mexican friends frantically drive to a market to find kitten-milk in the middle of the night because the kittens in their garage needed it.

 

bubba

 

Anytime I walked Mac somewhere, someone would enthusiastically show me a cellphone selfie of them and their dog. Bubba ended up with his own celebrity status among the housekeeping staff at a hotel we stayed in because he looked like Garfield and he's friendly. More than once I'd come back to the room after working out to find six or seven housekeepers cooing over him or playing with the feather wand.  

Point being, once I knew where our friend's thoughts on pets and expectations started, it was a lot easier for me to assuage misconceptions and let them know just how Mac and Bub were a little bit different.

What are the biggest misconceptions about relocating with a pet?

The biggest misconception is relocating with a pet is not doable. It TOTALLY IS doable, and it's totally worth it. Help is recommended: PetRelocation (specifically the ever-lovely Sarah) has helped me with 1.5 moves now (next move in January is already underway with preparations), and she was kind enough not only to help me get the boys from point A to point B, but also helped with finding pet care resources like veterinarians, where to buy the right brand of dog/cat food, and there have even been a few times where she's helped me translate the names of vaccines or flea-preventatives. I probably could have stumbled through some of that with my limited Spanish skills, but there's something to be said about the extra confidence boost a level of expertise will give you as you pave your way in a new country.

 

mac

 

Your pets are so beyond happy for the opportunity to stay with you, because you're who they know and love, you're who adopted them and took on the responsibility of taking care of them, and you're what give your pets a sense of home. Critters are remarkably adaptive to environment, but they are loyal to their people.  And let's be honest, I wouldn't be able to call anywhere home without them.

In conclusion; keep in mind that no one is going to abduct or eat your pets, in any form of regional culinary delicacy. Try the tacos and the sushi, the curry and the papusas, because none of them are made out of Fluffy or Fido, and it's going to be the most delicious thing you've ever put in your face.

--

Thanks to Mac and Bubba's owner for this insightful (and entertaining) information! No one said it was easy to be a devoted pet parent, but clearly it's a lifestyle that has its rewards.

One last thing: Here's a video of Mac -- it's the first in the "Mac Does Something Awesome" series (here is a link to the others). What a cool pet family!

 

 

Questions about Dog Travel to Indonesia

Tuesday, August 26, 2014 by Pet Travel Questions

Name: Sam
Number of Pets: 1
Pet Type: Dog
Pet Breed: Labrador
From: Canada
To: Indonesia

 

Hello,

I am in need of help.... I need to understand the impact of a potential move. My dog is 7.5 years old. He is a British dog, with a British pet passport. He lived in UK, then came to Switzerland with us for 4 years, then to Canada for 2 years and now we have a potential move to Indonesia or back to the UK. He is key in our decision making. I worry about Indonesia, I worry about:

- The journey
- The quarantine
- The paperwork
- The cultural difference with regards to pets/dogs
- The return to the UK/EU in a couple of years

Please can you help me with any advice or information to aid our decision making process? This is a company move.

Thanking you so much,
Sam
 

Hi Sam,

Sure, we'd be happy to offer you some information and to help you make sense of your options. For your reference, here are the pet import requirements for Indonesia.

It sounds like travel isn't new to you, but here is some basic information about traveling with a pet -- choosing the right airline, knowing the country requirements, and helping your dog to be prepared (with exercise, crate-training and hydration) are all good ways to help plan a safe and smooth trip. We've helped move pets all over the world, and while the new country is often quite a change, we hear again and again that owners find their pets to be surprisingly resilient.

In terms of living with a dog in Indonesia, you can probably expect pet food to be more expensive and the brands available may be limited. Having pets isn't as common in Indonesia as it is in Canada or the EU, but as in much of the world, attitudes are becoming more welcoming.

Here is some advice we give to all future expats regarding pets: research housing/apartment options before you go in order to find something pet-friendly, check online forums and expat websites for current details and helpful tips, and be prepared to exercise respect and flexibility as you adapt to local customs and learn to follow the accepted pet etiquette in your new home.

For a firsthand account of moving a pet to Indonesia, please take a look at the story of Fattie the cat: we recently helped her relocate to Jakarta. We have moved several pets to Indonesia and would be happy to discuss the process with you in greater depth if you'd like. Note that, to return to the UK or another EU country, your dog will face more stringent requirements than if you were coming from a rabies-free country (but it is possible to do).

Hopefully this helps to get you started! Please contact us if you're interested in speaking to us further, and good luck with everything.

 

Cat Travel between Dubai and the United States

Thursday, August 21, 2014 by Pet Travel Questions

Name: Arsalan
Number of Pets: 1
Pet Type: Cat
Pet Breed: Maine Coon mix
From: Dubai, UAE
To: San Francisco, CA, USA

 

Dear PetRelocation,

My wife and I are moving to San Francisco for a few months, and are trying to decide whether we should move our cat Zoe with us for the duration or whether we should keep her in Dubai.

I am sure you can imagine that we really don't want to leave her behind that long, and would love to have her with us at all times! (But are ready to do whatever is best for her.)

Your advice in this matter would be highly appreciated, as we have never been through something like this before.

Really appreciate your time and assistance.

Arsalan :)

 

Hi Arsalan,

Thank you for your question -- deciding whether or not to bring a pet on a non-permanent relocation is definitely a challenge and we certainly understand that you hate the idea of spending time away from Zoe!

First, you'll want to weigh the costs (financial and time-related) of meeting the travel requirements involved with this trip. Going to the United States means securing a health certificate and proof of rabies vaccine, and returning to Dubai will take a little more effort (your cat will need to be microchipped if not already, receive full vaccinations, and have all the required import documents). These things take time to complete and you'll end up spending several hundred dollars, as well.

There's also the matter of how well Zoe will handle two long airplane journeys. Pet travel is safe when planned correctly and we find that pets are pretty resilient, but since this isn't a permanent relocation, it's worth considering whether she might be happier staying in Dubai with a trusted friend, relative or boarding facility.

Lots of pet owners struggle over this kind of decision and there is no right answer, of course. All you can do is consider all factors, talk it over with your vet, and think about what is best for Zoe. Feel free to contact us if you'd like any further assistance.

Hope this helps... Good luck and travel safely!
 

Incredible Experiences: Fattie's Big Move to Jakarta!

Thursday, August 21, 2014 by PetRelocation.com Customer

Name: Ashley
Pet's Name: Fattie
From: Washington, DC
To: Jakarta, Indonesia

When we learned that we were moving to Jakarta, one thing that was a top priority was bringing our cat, Fattie, along with us. We had a very short timeline (only two months) from accepting the job to our move, so we felt that we really needed help facilitating the move.

PetRelocation was great from start to finish. They were true to their word and really saw the entire move through. We mostly worked with Sarah and Tobi and they were both friendly and helpful and always promptly replied to our emails, which was a really big help considering our super short timeline.

I definitely can't say enough about the actual flight and relocation process. We felt like our cat was in good hands during her travels and the service was truly door-to-door, which is something that we really needed.

Fattie is doing great here at her new home in Jakarta and is loving all of the tropical plants and wildlife. Thank you again to Tobi, Sarah, and everyone at PetRelocation for making our (and Fattie's) transition to Jakarta that much smoother! You guys are the best!
 



PetRelocation Team Member Spotlight: Meet Whitney!

Wednesday, August 20, 2014 by Core Values

The Core Values here at PetRelocation -- Integrity, Teamwork, Wisdom, Commitment and Innovation -- drive the work that we do and are illustrated by the people we hire.

Recently we introduced you to Penney, one of our dedicated Client Care Specialists, and today we'd like you to meet Whitney, another of our hard-working team members doing her best to make every pet move and client interaction an incredible experience.

Want to know more about what it's like to work at PetRelocation? Here's what Whitney had to say about her life as a PetRelocation Consultant.

whitney & maggieMy Journey with PetRelocation (so Far)

Day to Day

Working here is not routine or predictable, and I wouldn’t have it any other way! Discussing unusual moves – whether it is a unique pet or less familiar location – with our clients certainly keep us on our toes.

Rats, fish, birds, snakes -- they all have very different needs when it comes to transportation as well as differing import and export requirements! I often still answer calls that initially get me stuck – most recently about how to move a chicken to Vietnam (not easy)!

How I Got Here

When I stumbled upon a job listing for this company, I knew it was right for me. The position seamlessly connected my previous sales, customer service and animal experience. At this point I had no idea that there was such a huge market for this service (and my grandma will never understand: “It costs HOW MUCH to move a cat??” – love you Granny)!

Learning all of the rules, requirements and procedures involved has been quite challenging. We all gain and share knowledge every day. My co-workers have been so helpful and we all strive to provide the best experience possible to each client and their furry travelers!

The Best Parts

The most rewarding part of this job is the reunions – seeing happy owners and pets greet each other after the journey is over. I recently had the pleasure of delivering Bane, a beautiful husky, to his owners who just moved to Austin. Their excitement was contagious. I left with a huge grin and a feeling of accomplishment.

Of course, having pets in the office is a huge perk as well. There’s a dog running around daily, a resident hamster, and we even had a cat in for picture day! My pup Maggie really enjoys this.

Continuing the Journey

Change is inevitable here. This is a very unique industry with ever-changing rules and requirements, and there certainly isn’t a handbook explaining the ABCs of importing/exporting pets to every country in the world. I feel lucky to be a part PetRelocation -- a leader in our industry and a knowledgeable team that makes it all possible.

Meet the rest of the PetRelocation team, and please contact us if you have questions about your upcoming pet move.

Pet News Round-Up: Petitions, Games and Travel Tips

Friday, August 15, 2014 by Caitlin Moore

Sign the #DrivenToBark petition urging all states to better protect pets.

Like video games? Check out Dog Park Game.

For future reference: How to attend an internet cat video festival.

The TSA demonstrates how to bring a pet through a security checkpoint.

Check out these super cute Pet Campers.

Meet Tessa, our Pet Move of the Month!

 

gaston the cat

Have a good weekend!

Pet News Round-Up: Further Reading about Our Animal Friends

Friday, August 8, 2014 by Caitlin Moore

Amtrak is already expanding its pilot pet travel program in Illinois.

Lovely read: A man and his cat.

Ted talks: What dogs think.

This map compares dog and cat ownership in the United States.

Due to quarantine rules, Lady Gaga's dog Asia won't be able to travel with her to, uh, Asia.

Want to know more about the life of a pet shipper? Let one of our employees tell you all about it!

 

baxter

Have a happy weekend!

Cat Travel from Egypt to the United States

Monday, August 4, 2014 by Pet Travel Questions

Name: Baher
Number of Pets: 2
Pet Type: Cat
Pet Breed: Persian Doll Face
From: Egypt
To: United States

Dear PetRelocation,

My wife and I have two twin Persian doll face cats, weighing 6.6 and 9 pounds. We're in Egypt and will be moving permanently to the United States next year. We've never transported pets before and don't know the first thing about it.

What are we supposed to do? I am very anxious about this and am desperate for any information. How do I transport them and do I take them with me on the plane like cabin baggage? Also, what is the necessary paperwork?

Thanks a lot,
Baher
 

 

Hi Baher,

Thank you for your inquiry. First, please take a look a these frequently asked pet travel questions as well as the import requirements for the United States. The information found here will give you a basic understanding of what to expect regarding your cats' move.

To summarize, you'll need to make sure your cats have up-do-date rabies vaccines (and the documents to prove it), airline-approved travel crates, and you'll want to book the flights on a pet-friendly airline. Helping your cats to get used to their crates beforehand will be a big help. Most likely your cats will fly in the cargo area of the plane, which is pressure and temperature-controlled.

If you're interested in hiring some door-to-door assistance with your move (we help with pre-move paperwork, flight booking and transportation to and from the airport), you're welcome to fill out our free quote form.

Hope this helps! Please let us know if we can be of further assistance, and good luck with everything.

Pet News Round-Up: Travel Developments around the World

Friday, July 25, 2014 by Caitlin Moore

The Delhi airport takes steps towards more pet-friendly travel.

Joanie loves Chachi -- a Pit Bull (heartwarmingly) helped an injured Chihuahua to safety.

UK news: A Pug died on a P&O ferry, inciting a petition demanding safer options for pets crossing the Channel.

Can we ever really know a cat?

Are dogs capable of jealousy?

Amsterdam is super expat-friendly.

An unscientific survey explores the question: do big cats like water?

 

pepper

Have a great weekend!

 

Questions about Bird Travel to Hawaii

Thursday, July 24, 2014 by Pet Travel Questions

Name: Cayla
Number of Pets: 1
Pet Type: Small Bird
Pet Breed: Cockatiel
From: Mainland United States
To: Hawaii

 

Dear PetRelocation,

I know there are a lot of regulations with quarantine and regulations with dogs and cats going to Hawaii, but what will I need for my bird? I know she'll need a health check-up two weeks prior to flying, and I was told the vet should have everything in order for us to move to Hawaii.

I would just like to double check.

Thanks,

Cayla

 

Hi Cayla,

Thanks for the question, we'd be happy to offer some direction. According to the official Hawaii government website, most bird species require two different permits, including -- since you're coming from the Mainland United States -- this import permit.

In addition to those official Hawaii-specific details, here is more general information from our blog about transporting birds. It's important to secure the correct airline-approved travel container and to make sure you understand all airline regulations and import procedures in order to avoid delays. Please note that the Honolulu airport is the only entry port for birds in the state, for example.

Please contact us if you think you'd like some help relocating with your bird, and good luck!

Dog Travel From Canada to New York

Tuesday, July 22, 2014 by Pet Travel Questions

Name: Cat
Number of Pets: 1
Pet Type: Dog
Pet Breed: Dachshund
 

Dear PetRelocation,

I am planning to travel to Canada and back to New York by car. I want to take my dog with me but I am having a terrible time finding out what I need to do in order to make this trip possible.

I do not want to try to re-enter the US with my dog and find that I cannot. I can't seem to find a proper website with information about what New York State regulations are in order to return with my pet dog.

Do you know what I need to have? I asked a local vet office and they didn't know either. He has his rabies vaccination certificate but I think New York State wants more than that. Am I right? HELP!!!

Thanks so much,

Cat

 

Hi Cat,

Thanks for reaching out, we'd be happy to provide some information. For reference, here are the pet import requirements for Canada and the pet import requirements for the United States.

We have previously discussed what it takes to cross the US/Canada border with a pet on our blog. The US is generally more lenient than Canada (and many other countries), but to return to New York specifically you'll need proof of an updated rabies vaccine and a certificate of veterinary inspection. Take a look at the CDC and USDA websites for more information.

Hopefully this helps, Cat. Please let us know if you require further assistance, and have a great and safe trip.

 

U.S. Department of Transportation Expands Airline Reporting Requirements

Thursday, July 17, 2014 by Caitlin Moore

Beginning Jan. 1, 2015, more airlines will be required to report incidents involving the loss, injury or death of an animal during transport. This expansion of the current rule is meant to "provide consumers with a fuller picture of an airline's safety record," said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx.

Currently just 14 airlines have to adhere to reporting rules, but the expansion will mean that 27 carriers will now be responsible for filing annual reports detailing specific incidents as well as the number of animals carried. The definition of "animal" includes dogs and cats and also covers commercial shipments.

So what are the implications of this? As we told nbcnews.com, greater transparency is a good thing, and hopefully this will inspire every airline to do better when it comes to transporting pets. There are a handful of pet-friendly options out there now (we feel confident flying with a select few carriers, suck as KLM, Lufthansa and United), but it would be heartening and better for everyone to see greater attention paid to pet safety across the board.

Remember, pet travel is actually pretty safe overall, but there is certainly room for improvement. The pet travel industry continues to grow, and it's well past time for airlines offering pet travel options to truly commit to making their services as safe as possible. Greater accountability will help with this, and this new DOT rule is a step in the right direction.

If you'd like to know more, the Department of Transportation issues a monthly Air Travel Consumer Report and makes it publicly available on its website. If you're thinking about moving with a pet and have questions about it, please contact us.

 

pet in cargo

Cargo pet travel. (Photo Credit: Sandy Robins)

 

 

Cat Travel to Australia from Non-Approved Countries

Tuesday, July 15, 2014 by Pet Travel Questions

Name: Kariem
Number of Pets: 1
Pet Type: Cat
Pet Breed: Persian
From: Saudi Arabia
To: Australia

 

Hi PetRelocation,

I am in Saudi Arabia and planning to bring my cat to Bahrain. Could you offer some guidance about how to export her to Australia?

Thanks,

Kariem

 

Hi Kariem,

This is a good question, as Australia is a rabies-free country and moving pets here requires following particular processes very carefully.

It sounds like you know that cats can't move directly to Australia from Saudi Arabia -- here is more information about moving from a non-approved country. If you choose Bahrain as your country of departure, you'll need to follow the rules as outlined and complete all rabies vaccines, examinations, etc. in Bahrain.

The official Australia Government website also offers detailed instructions and a planning tool that will help you arrange the steps punctually and correctly. There have been a few recent rule changes regarding pet imports to Australia, and we've been hearing reports that some people have been encountering delays and extra fees due to not following procedures carefully enough.

Other than that, we can offer a few basic pet travel tips: choose a pet-friendly airline, help your cat to become acclimated to her crate, make sure she's well-hydrated before, during and after flight, and consider hiring professional assistance if you're unsure of anything.

If you'd like to find out more about our services, please fill out our free quote form.

Thanks for the question, and good luck with your move!

Pet News Round-Up: Money Saving Tips and Travel News

Friday, July 11, 2014 by Caitlin Moore

Money saving pet travel tips.

These police dogs are trained to sniff out hard drives.

Meet Wednesday, the cat featured as our Pet Move of the Month.

This cat video is adorable.

Twelve dog-friendly beaches.

New reporting rules address pet safety on planes.

 

monty

Happy Friday!

 

Pet Move of the Month: Wednesday's Journey to New Zealand

Tuesday, July 8, 2014 by PetRelocation.com Customer

wednesday the catThis month's featured pet move is Wednesday, a cool cat we assisted with a move to New Zealand. We featured her several weeks ago in a post about cat crate-training techniques and were also happy to discover that her owners have a blog for her, too.

They were kind enough to share a few more details about what it's like to move a pet to New Zealand (hint: it can be tricky), and now the incredible experience is complete and they're one happy family again -- ready to explore their new home!

What brought about your move to New Zealand?

A great job offer working on Linux computers (and the largest super computer in the Southern Hemisphere) prompted our move, and...it's New Zealand!  We both always hoped to at least visit New Zealand, so when the opportunity came up to move here we just had to take it.

Have you ever moved a pet internationally before this?

No, this was our first time and we were absolutely terrified!

What were some of your initial concerns?

Our move was a bit complicated, we didn't know we were moving until two months before we were scheduled to be on a plane.  Because of waiting periods between shots and when she could be cleared to travel internationally, Wednesday had to stay behind in the States for five months after we had already relocated to New Zealand.  This lead to our biggest concern being if she would remember us at all.  Other fairly large concerns were, "Is this what's best for her?" and "Will the long flight scar her for life?"

What surprised you about the pet travel process?

We were both shocked to discover that the hardest part isn't the move itself, it's getting your pet's paperwork in order prior to the move. The move itself was very smooth, and after they picked her up PetRelocation kept us apprised of where Wednesday was and how she was doing every step of the way. 

 

wednesday with crate

 

How did Wednesday handle the transition?

Honestly, she adjusted more quickly than we did.  I work from home, so the first week she spent glued to my side, cuddling up next to me any time I was sitting down.  After some much needed time together after so many months apart, she easily fell back into her usual routine.  Also, those fears we had about her forgetting us were simply foolish, when Wednesday finally arrived in New Zealand she was purring before we could even get her out of the crate.  She knew exactly who we were and that she was home.

Is New Zealand a pet friendly place to be?

New Zealand is very pet friendly, but in a different way than the States.  Here there are no screens in windows and doors are often left open.  It is not uncommon for a cat to wander into a shop and make themselves at home.  We even had a late night break-in of the feline variety when we first arrived, a neighbour cat sneaked in through an open window and then couldn't figure out how to get back out.  Wednesday is strictly an indoor cat, so this aspect of Kiwi life is something we wish we had known about prior to moving.

It may be different in more remote areas of New Zealand, but here in the city pet shops seem to be in good supply and are often paired with vet and grooming services.  Pet food and cat litter can be awfully pricy, though most stores offer their own home brand for significantly less than Purina or Friskies.

wednesday hiding

 

What advice do you have for people who might be planning a pet move?

First of all, don't panic. The moment you think you might be moving abroad, start looking into what might be required to move your fluffy family member.  Every country has different requirements for importing animals and some of them have lengthy quarantine times, so definitely begin preparing at least six months in advance.

What made you decide to hire help with your move?

Because it is such a long journey, New Zealand actually requires you to use a relocation service to move your pet.  We found out about PetRelocation online and when we contacted them for more information, Heather was friendly and informative; she even stayed on the phone with us when we took Wednesday to her first vet appointment, and we hadn't even officially signed up with PetRelocation.com yet. After that, we knew we didn't need to look any further for relocation services, and we were right.

wednesday sleeping

 

One more thing: you all sent us a photo of Wednesday when she touched down in California and had an overnight stay before continuing on through the journey. That really put us at ease, and something that really wasn't something you had to do.

You just did it, and it made a WORLD of difference.

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Thanks to Wednesday's caring owners for sharing this story with us! Have an international move coming up? Please contact us if you think you'd like some help.

 

You Already Know, but Still: Independence Day Pet Safety Tips

Thursday, July 3, 2014 by Caitlin Moore

Most pet owners know the drill: dogs and cats are not big fans of fireworks or hot weather, and holiday festivities tend to invite numerous dangers (illicit foods, fire hazards, escape possibilities, etc.).

Just in case you need a reminder, though, here's a quick rundown of what to do and what not to do as this American holiday weekend gets going.

america dog

DO: Establish a safe place for your pet, be it a room with a door or a kennel he or she likes to spend time in. When the house fills up with people and fireworks start going off outside, your pet may want nothing more than a little peace and quiet.

DON'T: Leave your pet outside unattended. It may be normal for your dog or cat to stay outdoors when you're not around, but getting spooked by loud firecrackers and running away is a very common behavior this time of year.

DO: Keep your pet on as regular a routine as possible. Keep walking and feeding them on the same schedule and be sure to fit in plenty of anxiety-suppressing exercise.

DON'T: Allow pets to roam through parties, picnics and barbecues where potentially dangerous food and alcohol are in reach. Most dogs love to scavenge for scraps, and it doesn't take much (a cup of beer, a chocolate cookie) to make them sick.

DO: Make sure pets are wearing collars with up-to-date ID tags. History tells us that hundreds of pets do end up escaping over the Fourth of July holiday, so it's smart to be prepared just in case.

DON'T: Assume your pets are interested in the same Independence Day experience as you are. Just like during travel, it's easy to forget that pets aren't humans and their needs are different. You like fireworks, they don't. You like lively parties and spicy foods, but your pets could do without. Don't worry about how much fun they should be having, just focus on keeping them safe and content.

Do you have any additional tips to add? Feel free to share, and have a great and safe Fourth of July, American pet lovers!

 

Photo Credit: AP Photo/Vail Daily, Shane Macomber