So far, our Australia Pet Travel Spotlight series has addressed the various challenges of planning a smooth pet move to Australia. The truth is that this is a time consuming and detail-oriented process, and once they've learned what this endeavor will entail, many pet owners decide to hire professional assistance in one form or another.
Specifically, here's why hiring a pet travel professional to help with your pet's move to Australia will save you time, stress and even money.
The process of moving pets to Australia takes at least 180 days (and often more). Not only are there several steps that pet owners need to complete, these steps need to be carried out in a very particular order. Even a small mistake could throw off a pet's entire timeline and cause a significant delay (which could easily make the move more stressful and expensive), so it's easy to see why many make the choice to pass along the planning responsibilities to someone with experience moving pets.
When starting in the United States, pets will need to make their way to Los Angeles (part one) where they can complete the export requirements and catch their flight to Australia (part two). An overnight is required because a final vet visit and additional USDA endorsements are needed, making this a particularly lengthy travel process. Especially if you're unavailable because you're dealing with your own trip, leaving these steps to a pet travel agent can make life much easier.
3. Rabies Titer Test
If you've looked over the pet import requirements for Australia, you've seen that a rabies titer test is required. This isn't a big deal in itself, but it's extremely important that the test is done at the right time and in the right way. For example, the blood test must be done at an approved lab and all rabies vaccines and tests must occur after the microchip is implanted. Read more about how to obtain a rabies titer test in preparation for your pet's journey to Australia and you'll start to see why it might be preferable to let an expert handle such a sensitive process.
4. Additional Vaccines and Quarantine
In addition to rabies, pets must be up to date on a few other basic vaccines. Most are easy to obtain, but dogs coming from the United States must be vaccinated against Canine Influenza Virus (CIV), which can be tough to arrange because not all vets typically offer this vaccine. Working with a pet travel specialist means having access to their knowledge and expertise, and PetRelocation will be able to facilitate the CIV vaccine in a timely way.
All pets arriving into Australia must fulfill a minimum 10-day quarantine at an official quarantine station. Currently the pet quarantine process in Australia is in flux, and reservations must always be made well in advance of your pet's trip. This is an extremely important part of the trip and it must be handled correctly -- again, an expert is better equipped to make sure things go smoothly.
5. The "What If" Factor
Because there are so many details to attend to with pet moves to Australia, this means there are more chances for something to go wrong. As you deal with your own move logistics it may not be possible to handle anything unexpected that arises -- a flight delay or paperwork snafu, for example. Pet travel professionals are trained to deal with anything that arises and will already have a contingency plan in place just in case.