There's no denying it—pet travel stirs up a lot questions and concerns. From paperwork to vet visits, crates to quarantines, the experience of moving isn't easy, but at least you can take comfort in knowing that we all have to follow the same rules.
When the First Family of the United States decided to take their Portuguese Water dog Bo with them on their holiday vacation this week (looks like the Obamas fall in line with our recent pet travel survey), they had to abide by the restrictions that any of us would encounter. As cute and as high-profile as he is, Bo still had to get his paperwork in order and the Obamas had to pay the standard $165 fee.
Pet Import Regulations for Hawaii state that animals arriving in the islands must undergo a veterinary examination, and if all the requirements (including proof of rabies vaccinations and a microchip implantation) have been met, then pets can be released from quarantine on the same day. This is called the “Five-Day-or-Less” program, and it requires that pet owners start the process at least four months before traveling.
A Hawaii official reports that the Obama family took care of everything well in advance to make sure that transporting Bo would be as smooth a process as possible. If for some reason Bo hadn't been approved, he'd be stuck in a quarantine facility while Michelle, Sasha, Malia and the President enjoyed their beach vacation. In other words, even one of the most well-known families in the world needs to be highly organized and responsible when it comes to navigating the world of pet travel.
It looks like Bo is a pretty active and well-traveled dog with plenty of lessons to share—follow his adventures on the Obama Dog Blog and on Twitter!