Pet Move of the Month: Xima’s Unexpected Move from Mozambique

In 2020, everyone has had to be a little more flexible. That's especially true for those planning to move pets this year. For many, having to relocate in the middle of a pandemic came as a surprise. That was the case for Maria, who had adopted a dog while living in Mozambique. When she was unexpectedly evacuated, she called PetRelocation. It was a bit of a rollercoaster, but we got Maria and her dog, Xima, reunited as quickly as possible. It took a lot of faith and planning, and that's why it's our Story of the Month! Read on to learn all about their journey. 

Tell us about Xima. How did she come to join your family and what’s her personality like?

Xima was adopted by me when I was serving in the Peace Corps as a health volunteer in Mozambique. She was my way of making life in another county a little bit normal. Honestly, I wasn’t planning on getting a dog there, but the two-year commitment can get lonely so she was perfect! 

Funnily enough, I didn't get her from a shelter or a store. She was actually sold to me by a man on the street! She is such an attention-loving dog and she fits in perfectly with my random bursts of energy followed by a nice nap.


Xima taking a nap

What brought about your move back to the US?

We were meant to be there for another year. However, COVID-19 had other plans. Because of the virus we actually got evacuated out of the country. So that was a very sudden move for both of us. 

Why did you decide to hire PetRelocation?

I always knew that getting Xima home (whenever that would have been) was going to be a challenge. Mozambique is quite far away! But I had looked into relocation services when I first got her and PetRelocation seemed like the perfect group of people to help me with this challenge. I saw you had moved pets all over the world, and the accreditation and reviews from other people really reassured me.

What were your initial concerns when you found out you’d be moving with Xima?

Honesty, I was scared that she wouldn’t be able to come home with me at all. Everything happened so fast during my evacuation that I got scared that she wouldn’t have time to make it home, or that things would get worse before they got better. But PetRelocation was truly amazing! You walked me through the process, helping me and Xima's caretaker with all the confusing paperwork! It was amazing. 

Your journey was affected by COVID-19? Can you tell us about that?

Xima and I were still supposed to be in Mozambique right now (July 2020). But due to COVID-19 all Peace Corps volunteers around the world got evacuated. We had about 24 hours to leave!  That meant I had 24 hours to figure out a plan to get Xima taken care of and have a plan to get her out. That was really stressful. Lucky for me I had already contacted PetRelocation to come up with a plan for moving Xima one day. We just didn't know “one day” would be so soon! So, when I told my PetRelocation consultant, Evelyn, what was happening she went right to work on helping me get her home!

What did you find to be the most valuable part of working with PetRelocation?

The constant updates were the best! My coordinator, Kelcey, made sure I always knew where she was. The friendly attitude and help were definitely a close second! 


Kelcey and Evelyn assisted Xima with her move


You traveled before Xima. Were you worried about being without her? How did you cope with that?

Oh my gosh, I was so worried! My whole world got turned upside when the pandemic hit. Not having her as my constant companion drove me nuts! I was constantly worried about her, but I knew the family she was with would spoil her as I would! I honestly would check my emails almost every hour looking for my updates from small dog moved from Africa to the USA during COVID Kelcey! You gave me hope that she would come home safely.

Finally, Xima’s big day arrived! Did PetRelocation’s tracking give you any peace of mind?

Her move went perfectly and the tracking was AMAZING. It really put me at ease knowing that there was a plan! Having her back in my arms was the greatest thing that has happened since coming home!

How has Xima settled into life in the USA? Does she have any favorite local dog-friendly spots?

Since she’s new to the USA things have been really exciting! She loves air conditioning, which we never had before. There are so many other dogs who want to be friends with her and she gets all the treats! She also loves rolling in the grass (we only had sand where we lived). She loves going to the park and running around with her dog cousins! She loves walking in the woods and trying to pick up every stick and stone to bring home as souvenirs! She is really loving being in her new home! Thank you all so much again!


Dog moved during COVID-19


Xima and her new friends


We are so happy that Xima made it safe and sound to her new home despite everything. Stories like this are exactly why we do what we do! Thanks for sharing your journey with us! If you have a story you'd like to share, you can do so here. And if you're ready to start planning your own pet's move, we can help. Get started today


PetRelocation Team


Air Travel, Move of the Month, Incredible Experiences




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