International Animal Transport Service

What to know about shipping animals overseas with care

Many pet owners know that not all pets are furry -- sometimes our companions have shells, feathers, and scales. Each kind of pet has its own set of needs, as well, and the differences between owning a dog versus a rabbit are only highlighted further when shipping animals overseas.

Specifically when shipping animals such as a turtles, bearded dragons or birds, an animal transport service can help ensure that both you and your scaly or feathery friend are prepared for an international relocation. While the timeline for a dog or cat’s relocation can be similar to that of a gecko, there are additional steps that may apply to your less traditional pet.

Typical components of our not so furry friends’ relocation include, but are not limited to:

  • The travel crate
  • The airfare
  • Transportation to and from the airport
  • Pre-move vet visits
  • International health documents and import permits
  • Government endorsements
  • Customs fees
  • Quarantine fees

The pieces of a timeline for the international animal transport of a guinea pig or turtle can vary greatly from that of a cat or dog’s needed permits and transit requirements. In this case, your animal transport service will partner with you to ensure that your unique pet is compliant with all requirements placed on their transport by both the importing and exporting country, as well as airlines.


Permits are country specific, and you will first need to consult your country of import’s governing body that issues permits – typically this is a ministry of agriculture, or in the United States this is the US Fish and Wildlife Service. In some instances of animal transport, both an import and an export permit are required.

Transit Requirements

The International Animal Transport Association (IATA) regulates the travel crate standards for all pets travelling abroad. Their goal, as is the goal of your animal transport service, is to create travel environments that are not only safe for international animal transport, but also meet the specific needs of every kind of pet.

Hiring a professional in animal transport to partner with you throughout the relocation of your pet will ensure that all the nuances of these unique pets’ move are attended to.      

Learn more about how PetRelocation can help streamline the pet travel process.

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