Here at PetRelocation, we cannot be all over the world at once. So, a huge part of what we do is cultivate relationships with pet industry pros from every part of the globe. A pet partner goes through a significant vetting system to make sure they are qualified to handle our most precious cargo— your pets!
Brian Anderson, of Magic CarPet Rides, is a great example of a pet shipping expert who has seen just about everything. Since 2014, he and his wife Dominique have helped us move hundreds of pets. Brian and team have been a lifesaving partner since the COVID-19 pandemic closed most of our routes for flying pets domestically. "He will drive anywhere to help families be reunited with their pets," raves our relocation coordinator manager, Mandy. When Mandy and her team found themselves at a standstill this summer, Magic CarPet rides stepped in to help, "even if it means some crazy crisscrossing of the country." Brian was up for the job.
So, let's get to know this pet-loving king of the road! Here's what Brian has to say about pets, travel, working with family, and more!
How long have you been in the pet shipping industry?
Our first day in the pet shipping industry was in May of 2014 at PetRelocation at your old downtown Austin office at Brazos and 7th. Rebecca Klenk took this picture of us (Brian and his wife and business partner, Dominique) out front after our meeting with Kevin O’Brien and the team. Since then we have been going non-stop with PetRelocation, with the last two years being mostly long-distance drives.
Pet travel is such a unique industry. How did you get involved in it and what surprises did you have?
Our first involvement in the pet transportation business was when we formed Pawstin Downtown Dog Walkers and Pet Taxi in December of 2013. Shortly after that we connected with PetRelocation and started our 7 years long wonderful relationship. What has surprised us the most is the extent to which we become attached to these dogs in the short time they are with us.
Dominique and Foster in Austin, Texas
Have you always loved working with animals?
We formed Pawstin in 2013 for Dominique and her life long love of dogs. It was going to be her retired avocation while I pursued teaching in retirement. Pawstin took off and we have been working together since, now as owners of Magic CarPet Rides LLC.
"Brian is like the uncle your pet has never met! The fur babies he transports are instantly part of his pack and he will do anything in his power to give them the best experience."- Rachel Reed, PetRelocation Sales Consultant
Tell us about your own pets!
As anyone on the PetRelocation team will tell you, we could talk about Dudley all day! He was a Pawstin client for two years before he became our dog on New Years' Eve 2015. He is a 16year-old Beagle and was a regular visitor to both PetRelocation offices while we lived in Austin.
Dudley at home in El Segundo
What advice would you give a pet parent just starting out planning a big move?
When your day of travel comes, be as relaxed as possible. Pets recognize your sense of calm and that will transfer to them. And then, of course, call PetRelocation!
First, you partnered with us with your previous company, Pawstin, helping us in the Austin area with our international relocations. You’ve since moved to the West Coast and started Magic CarPet Rides. What difference have you seen?
The biggest difference would be the amount of time spent with the pets on long-distance moves. During our 5 years in Austin the longest time spent with pets, for the most part, was the 3 hour drive to Houston or Dallas. Now, we spend so much more quality time with the pets! We truly bond with them, spending 3-5 nights in hotels going cross country. One of our longest drives was from Eugene, Oregon to Miami, Florida with Gumbo and Kumma.
Magic CarPet Rides took Gumbo a Kumma on a five-day drive for PetRelocation.
Do you have any moves that you’ve assisted with that really stand out in your mind over all these years?
There are so many but one that stands out was a recent move for a family with two Boston terriers. The family shared that their 3 young daughters were a bit anxious about being apart from Cira and Luna and would be following my progress across the country day by day, if not hour by hour. The blog on our website for that trip was written to the girls as I knew from their mother that they were tuned in! I wrote and updated at the end of every day for their eyes. The reunion was magical as the video in the blog shows.
"Assisting clients with their pets’ relocation is such a personal and extremely emotional aspect of any move – international or domestic. I am essentially asking someone to place the health and safety of their pet in my hands and the hands of our service partners, which is a big ask for any pet parent. Brian is one of those agents that understands the gravity of this responsibility to the nth degree.
He treats every PetRelocation move with a highly tailored approach. Brian recently completed ground transportation from the JFK airport to New Mexico for a PetRelocation client, and the owner received photo updates of the dog (Lydia) throughout the 2-day drive across the U.S. Brian took a photo of Lydia at the St. Louis Gateway Arch in Missouri, and another when Lydia crossed the New Mexico state line with the “Welcome to New Mexico, The Land of Enchantment” sign in the background. He has such a thoughtful touch that I know clients appreciate and I greatly appreciate." - Kelcey Schafer, Senior Relocation Coordinator
In 2020 ground transportation became a huge part of pet travel, with so many flights being grounded due to COVID. How has that changed the way Magic CarPet Rides operates?
In 2020, Magic CarPet Rides became a family business! I needed a lot of help meeting the ground transportation demand due to COVID and my son, Jonathan, stepped up. Jonathan’s employment was interrupted by COVID right at the beginning and he offered to help me out with the increased long-distance ground business. We have both been driving and flying across the country nonstop since. His company offered to rehire him but fortunately for me, he decided to stay with Magic CarPet Rides. With his help, we've been able to meet every request for long-distance drives. Together we have found ways to develop some expertise with all the logistics, flights, rentals, and hotels.
It is all the more exciting as Jonathan is finding a way to involve my daughter Shirley and together the brother and sister team will make Magic CarPet Rides a very special company over the next 10 years and beyond.
Are you working on any exciting moves for 2021?
2021 is filling up! One exciting move we have coming up is going to be very special. We'll be driving Bailey from Los Angels to Manhattan and we have plans to make it very memorable for the parents and Bailey with stops in Winslow, Arizona to take a picture of Bailey "standin' on a corner in Winslow, Arizona and such a fine sight to see”, a stop at the Caddilac Graveyard in Amarillo, Texas and spray paint Bailey’s name on a buried Caddilac and stop at the Arch in St Louis… and who knows what else!
Wow! What an exciting experience for Bailey and her family. Make sure to keep up updated on that journey. Thank you for all you do. We truly value your expertise and friendship!
If you have an incredible experience working with Brian and Magic CarPet Rides, let us know all about it! We love sharing stories about our tremendous partners. And if you'd like to nominate a PetRelocation service partner for a spotlight, tell us about that pet travel super-star here!