Help Me Move My Pet

Pet Travel Question: Exporting a Dog from Uganda

Wednesday, December 28, 2011 by Pet Travel Center Questions

Name: Tiffany
From: Uganda
To: California, USA
Pet: Dog

I have a local Ugandan dog (Charizard) who has been inoculated against rabies and parvo. I was a volunteer here in Uganda and I plan to take my dog home. She'll be two years old, spayed and weighs approximately 30 pounds. I have an approved travel crate and the necessary certification.

What airlines would you recommend, and do you have any other tips? I just want to make sure I have anything correct. I believe the possible layovers are Belgium, London and Germany. Also, she does not have a microchip -- is that required?

Hi Tiffany,

Thanks for your question! Here are the pet import requirements for the United States. This is one of the easier countries to import pets, and yes, you will need a microchip. We recommend a pet-friendly airline such as KLM, Lufthansa or Continental, and for more information about possible routes, costs and and other travel concerns, please contact PetRelocation.com for a free quote. Good luck with everything!

Pet Travel News Updates: Air Malta will become more pet-friendly, Virgin Atlantic releases pet travel statistics

Monday, December 12, 2011 by Pet Travel Questions

virgin atlanticWondering how many people are flying with their pets these days? Let these statistics recently released by Virgin Atlantic give you an idea. Since 2003, this British airline has seen a 1500% increase in the number of dogs flying out of the UK and a 325% increase in the  number of cats doing the same.

This is just one airline, but clearly these numbers are worth noting and this growth trend can most likely be reflected by the industry as a whole. More and more people are traveling with their pets, and air carriers are taking notice. We look forward to watching the industry develop even further, and will report the inevitable exciting changes to you as they emerge.

For example, a smaller airline that you may or may not have reason to do business with, Air Malta, has just announced that it will be implementing a new pet policy beginning Jan. 1, 2012.

Air Malta  has been allowing guide dogs to ride in the airplane cabin for the last two years, but beginning in January, small pets (cats and dogs) will also be allowed to travel with their owners in the cabin. These new policies are based on customer and employee suggestions, and include the following:

-Small pets will be allowed in the cabin during all Air Malta flights, with the exception of those flying to and from the UK.

-Pets should be in a carrier no larger than 55cm x 40cm x 20cm. The carrier should meet all air travel requirements (it should have a leak-proof bottom, allow proper ventilation, etc.).

-The pet and the carrier cannot exceed a combined weight of 10 kg.

-Only three pets, including guide dogs, can fly on one airplane.

-Pets must remain in their carrier throughout the flight, and the carrier must remain stowed beneath the seat throughout the flight.

-Pets must be at least eight weeks old to fly.

-Pets must still meet all import requirements for the destination country and must have a valid health certificate and should have seen a vet within three days before the flight.

These rules seem pretty standard but can make all the difference to pet travelers, so hopefully more airlines out there will soon be following suit. At any rate, we'll keep you updated!

air malta

Pet Travel News Links: Holiday Fun with Pets, Gift Ideas and More

Friday, December 9, 2011 by Caitlin Moore

Happy Friday! The holidays are inching nearer, but there's always time for a pet travel news break...

-In case it pertains to you, Air Malta will begin allowing small pets in the passenger cabin in 2012.

-Here's an in-depth look at breed-specific legislation in Australia.

-The biggest animal headlines of the year, according to People Magazine.

-Cool pet gifts that give something back.

-More gifts for pets and pet lovers, particularly for those that like to travel.

-Meet Cole, the PetRelocation.com Pet Move of the Month! He's also a pro at demonstrating how to choose the right pet travel carrier.

-Around the world, people love celebrating the holidays with pets.

Mona's not stressing about the holidays, so why should you?

Pet Travel Question: Traveling with a Cat to Lebanon?

Friday, December 9, 2011 by Pet Travel Center Questions

Name: Rola
From: Dubai, UAE
To: Beirut, Lebanon
Pet: Cat

I want to go on vacation to Lebanon and come back to Dubai in two weeks and I need to take my kitty with me. Can you please help?


Hi Rola,

Thank you for contacting us with your question! Are you picking up your cat in Lebanon or do you already have her? In any case, here are the pet import requirements for both Lebanon and the UAE.

Pet travel puts stress on the animals, and as you can see, there's a lot of paperwork and health documentation involved also. We typically advise that you only move them if you're relocating (not just vacationing), but ultimately it's up to you and your vet to decide what's best. Please contact us if you have any more questions!

Pet Move Customer Testimonial: Faye's Dog Move to Belgium

Thursday, December 8, 2011 by PetRelocation.com Customer

Name: Garrett
Pet's Name: Faye
From: Galien, Michigan
To: Waterloo, Belgium

We chose PetRelocation.com to ship our dog, Faye, because their staff was very friendly and professional compared to the other companies we contacted. We were treated like actual people rather than just another sales lead.

They were very helpful and flexible during the entire process, especially as our actual move date continued to stretch over two months. Their suggestion to acclimate Faye to air travel by bringing her through the car wash was very helpful. By the time we left, we had a very clean car, and Faye was much calmer in her crate during all of the loud airplane-like noises of the car wash.

Faye has settled into her new house, yard, and neighborhood very well.


Pet Travel Question: Moving Pets to Malaysia

Thursday, December 8, 2011 by Pet Travel Questions

Name: Vipin
Pet Type: Dog
Pet Breed: Cross breed (Terrier)
From: Oman
To: KL, Malaysia

Please guide me through the process of reaching Malaysia, the range of services offered and the charges thereof. I also have two turtles. Am I allowed to import them?


Hi Vipin,

Thanks for the question! These are the pet import requirements for Malaysia. If you'd like some help handling your move, we're happy to offer you a free quote for our door-to-door services; simply visit our site and fill out our quote form.

As for the turtles, it's best to check with the Malaysia Department of Veterinary Services to find out about the latest import requirements. Good luck with everything, and please contact us if you have any more questions!

Pet Travel Question: Obtaining a USDA Endorsement

Wednesday, December 7, 2011 by Pet Travel Questions

Name: Georgie
Pet Type: Dog
Pet Breed: Scottish Terrier
From: New York City
To: Firenze, Italia

What is the USDA endorsement? Is it needed on the health certificate? Where/how do you get it? He will be traveling with me at my seat, not as luggage.


Hi Georgie,

Thanks for contacting us with your pet travel question. First, take a look at the pet import requirements for the UK (which are scheduled to change Jan. 1, 2012) to find the full list of regulations.

With a service like PetRelocation.com, we would handle the USDA endorsement process (which consists of sending the health documents, available from your USDA-certified veterinarian, to your local USDA office --  here's a resource that should help you find the USDA office closest to you). It's possible to do it yourself, too, however.

Please contact us if you have any questions, and good luck with the trip!

Pet Travel Gift Guide: Ideas for Pets and Pet Lovers

Thursday, December 8, 2011 by Caitlin Moore

Chances are you're still working on your holiday shopping, and if you're reading this blog, you most likely have a few pets and pet owners on your list.

We always have pet travel on the brain, so you bet we have a few gift suggestions that will make your holiday pet travel plans run a little smoother. Have some fun with these gift ideas, and happy holiday traveling to you all!

pet travel gift basket

Pet Travel Gift Basket
includes a dog bowl, baggies and  tasty-to-your-pup treats like "Duck 'n' Rice Ringles" and "PupPuccino treats".

Animal Planet Pet House

This portable pet house from Animal Planet is made of soft foam and is easy to assemble -- perfect for bringing along to grandma's house.

Thunder Shirt
The Thunder Shirt provides a gentle, constant pressure to a dog's body, and according to many pet owners, has a calming effect that makes travel and stressful situations  -- like thunderstorms -- much easier to handle.

*Note: PetRelocation.com has never shipped a pet wearing a thunder shirt, but we've heard of people who have (KLM is apparently open to allowing them). If you're traveling with a sensitive pup, just check before you go to see if your thunder shirt will be allowed.

pet boots

Traveling to colder climates and worried about your pet's paws? Protect them from the elements with these sherpa/suede fully lined Pet Boots.

travel bag

Make things easy on yourself by picking up a carry-all for the various accessories you'll need for your big holiday trip. This functional bag by Doggy Baggage has multiple pockets and a cute design.

cat bed
And last but not least (because they probably don't travel quite as often but kitties do hit the road sometimes), here's a great cat bed for the feline owners out there. The Eco-Buttercup Bed can be adjusted so that it's either flat or a snuggly buttercup shape, depending on your cat's preference. Hat tip to our Facebook fan Kim for bringing our attention to this one!

What are you getting your pet (or favorite pet lover) for Christmas? Tell us about it on Facebook!

Pet Travel Tips: Choosing the Right Size Travel Crate

Tuesday, December 6, 2011 by PetRelocation.com Customer

Recently we moved Cole, a black lab, from California to Disrito Federal, Brazil. It turns out that Brazil has a variety of specialized pet import requirements,so it was important for his owners to plan carefully and start their preparations well in advance.

That's not even mentioning something everyone must address no matter where they're flying a pet -- choosing the right size travel crate. It's easy to underestimate the size of the crate you'll need (pets should be able to stand comfortably and stretch out a little while enjoying plenty of breathing room), so pet owners should consult a few good sources before making their final decision.

Cole's owner happens to qualify as such a source, as not only was he thorough enough to take videos as his pup tried a couple of crates on for size, he was kind enough to share them.

Take a look as Cole (a very well-trained dog, by the way) shows us how it's done, and feel free to use this as a guide as you make your own pet travel crate decisions.

Here's Cole in a crate that's a bit too small for him:

And here he is (along with a friend) in a crate that's a correct fit:

Well done, Cole! We're glad you made it safely to your destination, and hope that life in Brazil is going well. Here's a bit more information about pet travel crate measurements and how to choose the right one, and as always, contact PetRelocation.com with any additional questions.

Pet Move of the Month: Cole's Move to Brazil

Wednesday, December 7, 2011 by PetRelocation.com Customer

Cole - Pet Move of the MonthCongrats to Cole, our December Pet Move of the Month! Cole is a Labrador who moved from San Francisco to Brazil, a process that required quite a bit of preparation.

In addition to meeting standard health requirements and Brazil's specific import regulations, Cole's owners also had to make sure this big guy had a large enough travel crate (check out Cole's video tutorial illustrating how to choose the right size pet travel crate).

Thanks to Cole for showing us how it's done, and thanks to his owner, Mike, for answering a few questions about their trip. Good luck in Brazil!

What were some of your concerns going into the move?

Temperature and overall comfort level for Cole.

Did anything surprise you about the international pet moving process?

The amount of paperwork that is required!

How is Cole adjusting to the new location?

He loves all of the new space and especially playing with his red Frisbee in the pool and the hot tub.

What is life like in Brazil? Is it a pet-friendly place to be?

So far, we've seen that a lot of people have dogs and bring them everywhere -- a lot like San Francisco. There are some very good trails and open areas. We have not seen a vet yet, but are going to soon. It is difficult to find the same kinds of food here, so for now, we have ordered from Petsmart and had his food shipped.

There are some diseases and insects that can be dangerous to dogs here, so we also have to take extra measures to protect against these. Even though there are a ton of large dogs here, I still can't find a large pet bed for Cole. (Odd.)

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

Having assistance is definitely worth it. I recommend planning very early because the last month goes by very fast and you can't always predict a veterinarian problem or unseen health issue with the pet.

For us, crate training was easy because Cole was trained to be in crate from two months of age, but for those who aren't as comfortable, this is probably a big priority.

Pet Travel Question: Tips for a Military Pet Move

Monday, December 5, 2011 by Pet Travel Center Questions

Name: Noelle
From: Gibraltar
To: London
Pets: Two cats

I would like to know the estimated cost of transporting my animals from Gibraltar to London, and then onto the USA. Due to it being a military move, we will be flying British Airways from Gibraltar to London, and then on American Airlines from London to Seattle, Washington. I am looking for the most cost effective way to do this.


Hello Noelle,

Thanks for contacting us! Since this is a multi-part move you'll need to meet the pet import requirements for both the UK and for the US. Luckily the requirements for the UK are set to become less restrictive Jan. 1 2012 (read more about the new UK pet import rules). The cost of all of this will depend on your time frame and a few other details, so check out these links and feel free to fill out our free PetRelocation.com quote form. (Please note that we also offer a 10% Military Discount.)

Good luck with everything, and please let us know how we can be of further service!

Pet Travel Question: How to Fly a Puppy

Monday, December 5, 2011 by Pet Travel Questions

Name: Julie
Number of Pets: 1
Pet Type: Dog
Pet Breed: Puggle
From: US
To: Canada

Over Christmas we are going to visit family for a week with our puppy. How can we go about bringing him with us?


Hi Julie,

Thanks for submitting your question to us. To give you an idea about the health documents you'll need, etc, here are the pet import requirements for Canada.

In terms of traveling with a puppy, it's our policy to wait until they're at least four months old so that they can get their rabies shots and are physically sturdy enough to handle the experience of flying.

Take a look at all of this information, and please let us know if you need anything else! We'd be happy to offer more advice or a free quote for our services. Good luck!

Pet Customer Testimonial: Skye & Teddy's Move to Canada

Monday, December 5, 2011 by PetRelocation.com Customer

Name: William
Pet Names: Skye & Teddy
From: Houston, TX
To: Calgary, AB

Rebecca and the PetRelocation.com team made this transfer exceptionally painless. From the start, their online contract paperwork, their handling of the vet, medical clearances, and travel arrangements were all handled seamlessly and efficiently.

Our pets arrived on time and in the best of condition. Thank you, Rebecca, for such great service! We will definitely use you for all our future moves.

Continuing our Pet Travel Education: Lessons from the 2011 IPATA Conference

Friday, December 2, 2011 by Caitlin Moore

The 2011 IPATA Conference offered a great chance for Cara and Matt, two of our senior PetRelocation.com employees, to meet other pet shipping pros, brush up on the latest industry trends, and get some hands on experience, as well (check out Kika's Hong Kong/China border crossing story). They even got to host a pet party at Pet World for some of our past and present clients, and overall found Hong Kong to be a welcoming and enriching place.

Here's a little more about the conference itself, as recounted by Matt, our Director of Customer Relations:

This year’s IPATA conference in Hong Kong was a great treat for all involved, and an invaluable way to meet new faces, visit old friends, and gain further insight into all manner of current and future trends in the pet relocation industry.

ipata group photo

The conference proper was spread over four days, November 5th-8th, and included various workshops, guest speakers, awards ceremonies, and a silent auction.  Some of the more interesting topics covered:





This year’s conference was particularly unique, as it was one of the first to be hosted in Asia.  In previous years, the vast majority of conferences have been held in either North America or Europe, which has prevented a good portion of our friends in the East from attending.  This year, however, we were able to finally put faces to the friendly voices we have worked with continuously over the years.

It was a tremendous learning experience for every member fortunate enough to attend, and a further reminder that IPATA is one of the most dedicated group of pet lovers the world over!

Friday Pet News Round-Up: Beagle Freedom Project, Hong Kong Pet Travel and More

Friday, December 2, 2011 by Caitlin Moore

-Two of our senior employees recently visited Hong Kong for the 2011 IPATA Conference. Read about their adventures moving a dog to mainland China and about the fun pet party they had at Pet World.

-A stolen dog is found and returned to his family after five years.

-Pet obesity: stats and information.

-Hometown pride! Austin Pets Alive! won the ASPCA $100K Challenge, so they'll be able to help many more pets find homes.

-Here are a few fun pet products from Dogster that'll come in handy for any upcoming holiday pet travel you may be planning.

-It's true, PetRelocation.com played a role in the Beagle Freedom Project efforts you've been hearing about. Check out the video if you haven't seen it yet!

Pet Travel Question: Importing Staffordshire Terriers

Saturday, December 3, 2011 by Pet Travel Questions

Name: Sharon
Number of Pets: 1
Pet Type: Dog
Pet Breed: Staffodshire Bull Terrier
From: UK
To: US

I am inquiring for a friend moving to the US with his Staffie. I have heard that Staff's may not be able to enter the US from abroad. This would devastate him. Literally, this dog IS his family. She's not aggressive (except for licking you to death). Is this a cut and dry regulation or are the dog's past and temperament taken into consideration?

Thank you,

Hi Sharon,

The United States is actually one of the easier places to bring a pet, and as far as I know there are no regulations banning the import of Staffies. Here are the import requirements for the US -- take a look and please contact us if you have any more questions.

For future reference, you can also read more about Staffordshire Terriers and breed-specific legislation on our blog. Good luck with everything!

Pet Air Travel: Questions about flying pets in cargo

Thursday, December 8, 2011 by Caitlin Moore

It's easy to become stressed out when planning the logistics of an international relocation, and every day we talk to pet owners who are worried about how their pets will handle the experience of flying.

Depending on the airline you choose, where you're going, and the size of your furry family member, you may end up discovering that, to make it from Point A to Point B, your pet will need to be placed in the cargo area of the plane. For many pet owners, the thought of flying with their pets out of reach and out of sight sounds a little scary, and in this situation, it's also easy for pet travel misconceptions and unfounded fears to overshadow the facts.

What exactly does it mean to fly pets via "cargo"? Where is the cargo area, and what's it like inside? Here are a few facts that should help clear up the confusion surrounding this issue.

cargo plane
The two parts of the cargo area are highlighted above

-The cargo area on most standard narrow body planes (Boeing 737s, etc.) is the large area in the belly of the plane and is essentially divided in half by the engine and wings (so there's a forward "bin" and a rear "bin").

-Luggage, assorted cargo and pet crates may be packed in the same bin, and the plane has to be balanced as well as possible.

-Pet crates are secured during flight using netting and straps, so in case of turbulence, pets will be kept safe and stationary. While the crates are in the same general area as luggage and other cargo, these items are kept as far from the pets as possible so that pets' air flow will not be compromised.

-Basically, good airlines know what they're doing, so though baggage and pets are in the same part of the plane, they certainly aren't treated the same way.

-According to Continental Airlines, stress is the most taxing part of the travel process for animals, and keeping them away from the hectic vibe of the cabin (think strange smells, crowds of people, various noises, etc.), makes for a better experience overall.

So, though you won't have access to them during the flight, when you choose a pet-friendly airline with a good pet safety record (in addition to Continental, KLM and Lufthansa are a couple of our preferred airlines), flying pets in the cargo area is often the best choice.

Please contact us if you have more questions about flying with pets in cargo. Remember, it's normal to feel nervous about pet travel, but the more you know, the more you'll realize how safe it can really be.

(Image courtesy of United Airlines)

Pet Travel Question: Moving a Great Dane

Thursday, December 1, 2011 by Pet Travel Questions

Name: David
Number of Pets: 1
Pet Type: Dog
Pet Breed: Great Dane
From: Florida
To: Either England or Japan

I may be assigned overseas and wanted to see how to go about getting my Great Dane overseas with me. He is a year old and weighs 150 Lbs.


Hi David,

Thanks for contacting us with your question. First, here is some general information about moving large dogs. You'll probably need to acquire a custom crate for your Great Dane, and it's important to check with your airline ahead of time to make sure the crate will be able to fit onto the airplane.

Here are the pet import requirements for Japan and the pet import requirements for the UK (which are scheduled to change Jan. 1, 2012, by the way). Let us know if you have any questions about these regulations, and please visit our site if you'd like a free quote for our services.

Good luck with your travels!

Pet Travel Question: Bringing a Cat on Vacation

Sunday, December 4, 2011 by Pet Travel Questions

Name: Karla
Number of Pets: 1
Pet Type: Cat
Pet Breed:
From: Mexico
To: US

I'm going for a short stay for a vacation only, and I want to know whether my 3 3/4 years-old cat can go with me or not and what do I need to take her with me.


Hi Karla,

Thank you for your question. It would be possible to bring your cat on vacation with you -- these are the pet import requirements for the United States and the pet import requirements for Mexico.

We advise that you choose a pet-friendly airline when you fly; also it's important to take some care in selecting the proper travel carrier and try to work to help your cat get used to the crate, as well.

Good luck with your trip, and please contact us if you have any more questions!

Pet Move Customer Testimonial: Jasper's Dog Move

Thursday, December 1, 2011 by PetRelocation.com Customer

Name: Michael
Pet's Name: Jasper
From: Portland, OR
To: Phoenix, AZ

I moved from Portland, Oregon to Phoenix, Arizona as part of a work promotion. While the thought of moving is overwhelming enough, the idea of "moving" my dog was just over-the-top.

I was more than concerned about how Jasper would get down here - the idea of him being "shipped" felt too much like a package being sent - I needed more assurances that he would be more than a package to them.

Honestly, I found PetRelocation.com through a Google search and after reading some testimonials, felt pretty good with their service - what sold me was Rebecca's service when we first spoke and emailed - I knew that Jasper would be well cared for and she did not disappoint.

Here's the kicker, I was already in Phoenix and my dog was staying with family so I went for the full door-to-door service. AMAZING. He was picked up promptly, all his paperwork was handled in advance so there were no last minute "things" to worry about. I received update emails to let me know how things were going on Jasper's big travel day, and before you know it, my dog and I were reunited.

Rebecca and all of her team took care of everything and also CARED for Jasper like he was just as important to them as he is to me.

Thanks for all you have done.