If you’ve made the life-changing decision to immigrate and take your pet or pets with you, you deserve a pat on the back! Although this journey is not for the fainthearted, it is surely doable and much easier with the help of a professional pet transportation company.
Choosing the right company, however, is vital for your pet’s safety and comfort. Pets, like humans, need to be considered and kept safe and comfortable during travel. As they’ll most likely be in quarantine after arrival, they must be with a trusted company that will treat them with respect.
Basic Requirements and Considerations
Several things need to be considered once you’ve decided to take your pets with you to another country. Countries, states, and public modes of transportation all have requirements and restrictions in place to protect people and animals. It also serves to protect the ecosystems and guard against the spread of diseases and pets.
Most pet transportation companies require a CVI (certificate of veterinary inspection) to prove that your pet is deemed fit to travel. Some countries or states also require pets to be under quarantine before and after arrival and it is your responsibility to obtain all this information and plan and budget accordingly.
If your pets are flying, contact the airline on the day of departure to verify that the trip can still take place. If it is too hot or too cold for your pet to be transported safely, the airline can refuse to proceed with transportation. It is advised to have alternative arrangements in place should your pet not be able to travel on the day.
What is a CVI and Do I Need One?
A CVI, also known as a health certificate, is an official document issued by an accredited veterinarian. It serves to confirm that the animal identified on the document, has been inspected and was found to comply with the health regulations of the same state, between states, or internationally.
Animals should be healthy enough to travel and a CVI proves that they are. Such services are only available by appointment so timeline planning is crucial to ensure all the required documents are readily available in time for your travels.
There may be other documentation required, and this will be determined by your designated country or state.
The First Steps
The first steps in taking your pet abroad can be summarised as:
- Find out exactly what your chosen state or country requires.
- Make an appointment with your vet for the CVI and other necessary documentation and vaccines.
- Identify and contact a veterinarian at your destination. Consult your existing vet for a referral or ask close friends about reputable vets.
- If your pet will need to be quarantined, contact the authorities in advance to make sure all arrangements are in place.
- Share all your information with your current and new vet, especially any healthcare needs of your pet.
- Plan the transport of your pet. Several companies offer interstate pet transport and international services but it is crucial to use a well-known and recommended company with contactable references. Some of them also offer lodging and door-to-door services.
How Do You Choose the Best Pet Transportation Company?
Pets are an integral part of the family, and you’d do anything to make sure they are safe and well taken care of, especially when you’re not around. Choosing the right company can be overwhelming but it needs to be done, and knowing what to look for when making this decision will make this task so much easier.
Firstly, make sure of the range of services they offer so you can use one company from beginning to end. Ask about their experience and training so that you can have peace of mind about the competence of the people who will be handling your pet, especially if your pet is hard to handle or already old.
Read online reviews to make sure they have a happy client base, and if possible, try to speak to some of their clients personally. A company that takes pride in its reputation will not have a problem providing you with contactable references.
Lastly, as much as costs play a role, their general attitude will be a good guide on whether your pet will feel comfortable in their presence or not. Snappy and impatient people are less likely to make this journey easier on your pet. Always trust your gut feeling over a bill.
Relocating to a different state or country can be just as daunting for your pets as it is for you. Having a reliable trustworthy company will leave you and your pet feeling more confident during travel. Make sure you have all supporting documents ready on the day of departure.
Enjoy this new chapter of your and your pet’s lives!