traveling with pets

A Complete Guide to Traveling with Pets 2022

Must choose the least risky and perhaps most comfy mode of transportation for the pet while making travel choices. For example, if you’ll be spending lots of time with the pet, they’ll be happy and healthy staying at home rather than accompanying you on your journey. Animals are mostly happier inside their own environment. If you do plan to bring the pet on through, follow our traveling with pets advice for a relatively secure and stress-free trip.

While traveling overseas and bringing it back to the United States, make absolutely sure to have the pet’s paperwork. Allow adequate time prior to the trip to take notice of the pet’s healthcare issues and documentation. Keep in mind to begin the procedure as soon as possible.

Pay a visit to the veterinarian

If you’re going on a trip abroad, let your vet know that as early as you can. You could indeed ensure that your dog is fit and active enough to make the journey and that it satisfies the criteria for the target country and you bring back the pet to the U. S. by working together.

Nations have different prerequisites for allowing pets into and out of their border. So always consult with the destination country’s consulate or embassy to learn about the requirements. You may also have to fill the requirements of the airlines you’ll be traveling by.

Some common requirements are:

Microchips for identificationBlood testsHealth certificates
VaccinationsPermitsDisease reports

Do a lot of research

Flying with pets consists of a lot of stages. To know about all of them correctly, you have to do a lot of research. You may have to visit the vet, make all the paperwork ready, consult with the airlines and know their requirements, after landing at the final destination – complete all final tasks. All these works are quite lengthy and require a lot of patience.

So research as much as you can! You can start with the United States APHIS website to get started. Follow up with the airline’s requirements to not miss any of the tasks. Remember, even missing only one task may result in your dog not getting accepted by the destination country.

Airlines

When it comes to if and how a dog can take trips, air carriers have various policies. Your dog could be capable of flying with you inside the compartment or just in the cargo compartment, depending on the company. Affirm this with the air carrier in advance.

Comparatively smaller cats and dogs that can be accommodated in special containers under the chair are permitted inside the compartment on air carriers that permit animals to make the journey. Throughout any stopovers, their holders must look after their companions. Some airline companies may refuse to transport pets as passengers and instead ship them as baggage in a warmer and vented hold. Because it is extremely quiet and greyer, dogs and cats could be able to fly and relax better in the end – suggested by the IATA.

A further option is to transport the animal as just an air freight delivery on a different flight. Make the dog accustomed to the new transportation pet carrier in advance if it is the preferred choice or a necessity due to the dog’s dimensions or the target nation’s guidelines.

To avert any missteps during transport, double-check the door hooks securely. Consult the vet for guidance on when to feed and provide water to the pet. You should take measures for pickup at the ultimate stop if your pet is flying as an air freight shipment.

Several Us airlines refuse to transport pets from May to October when temperatures in the Temperate Zone are at their highest. While traveling by aircraft with pets, security is indeed a major worry, regardless of the season. When a dog or cat should travel as freight, it should be transported in a durable kennel with enough space to hold and sit, move around usually even as standing, as well as lay on the floor in a preferred role.

You will need to start caring for the pet moving with you inside the compartment whereas the flight crew or baggage handlers look after a pet moving in the cargo compartment while you stand in line for a stopover flight. Verify with the airline ahead of time to see what requirements they have.

Make sure the pet is comfy

Traveling is often a very stressful thing for pets. As they are not so used to going out, it can cause some effects on their mental health. So what are the things that you can do to avoid that? Let’s find out.

  1. Well ahead of the trip, get the dog familiar with its container.
  2. Select flights that have fewer transits or stopovers.
  3. To avert excessive heating and cooling, choose your arriving and departing times carefully. For instance, arriving at a hot location late in the evening could be better for the dog.
  4. Make an appointment with the vet. Sedatives, as well as sleeping pills, are not recommended by the IATA, because they may cause suffering while on the plane.
  5. Prior to actually leaving the house and once more before inspecting it, take the dog for a stroll.
  6. Inspect as slowly as possible if the pet is permitted inside the compartment to alleviate anxiety.
  7. If the dog is being shipped as cargo, arrive early so that it can be taken to the aircraft’s silent and dim lighting cargo compartment.

Are you Traveling with Pets by sea?

Various cruise liners have separate regulations as to whether or not travelers can bring a dog or guide animal on board and also what paperwork you’ll need. Verify this with the cruise liner in advance. In case you travel overseas with the animals on a cruise liner or even other seafaring boats, you must meet general lines of entry requirements in order to open or re-enter The U.S.

Worth noting that the Centers for disease control has temporarily closed the import of foreign dogs from nations where dog infectious disease is a significant risk, such as dogs who have toured an elevated-risk country in the previous six months.

Are you going out of the U.S?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention doesn’t have prerequisites for animals departing The Us. If individuals intend to re-enter the U.S with a dog, nevertheless, the dog must meet the very same entrance examination as animals having arrived from other nations.

If individuals plan on taking the dog to a nation with a high threat of dog infectious diseases, check the import/export prerequisites before going abroad, as the dog might not even be readmitted given the current postponement, which appears to apply to dogs who live inside the United States and have journeyed to elevated-risk countries, even if just for a brief trip.

Upon re-entering the United States

All animals, regardless of whether re-entering or arriving inside the U.S, must function normally. Animals shipped from nations where the Centers for disease control recognize the risk of dog rabies to be high are subject to a total suspension.

Immunization and medical credentials may be required in certain provinces. Once you end up leaving on the trip, verify with the department of health of your location. Specific types of dogs are prohibited by some airline companies, towns, or provinces, so confirm before you make the journey. A few animals living in the U.S, such as service dogs as well as dogs destined for selling or acquisition, are subject to additional constraints put by the US Dept of Agriculture.

Are you traveling with a cat?

The Centers for disease control do not necessitate cats to get a rabies immunization certificate in order to come into the country. Cats, on the other hand, are required to have them in most provinces and many other nations, and the Centers for disease control advise that all kitties be immunized against meningitis. Before having to travel, remember to check the prerequisites for your location and consult the vet.

Is your pet any other animal than a dog or a cat?

There could be extra conditions if the animal is neither a cat nor a dog. Great apes (monkeys or chimpanzees) and African vermin, for example, will not be allowed to come back inside the U.S.  Even if they had been born in America, they are not allowed to be brought back as companion animals.

A Pet’s Ailment or Fatality Throughout Trip

Amidst all precautionary measures, pets can become ill or perhaps even end up dying while traveling by air. Officials from the Department of Public Health must ensure that a pet did not die of an illness that can be transmitted to humans.

To determine the factors of the fatality, they will have to undertake an animal postmortem or other exams at your expense. After such test results, the pet’s remnants are frequently not handed back to the owner.

Consider other methods of transportation

Ensure the pet is in good enough shape to fly. If you’re not sure, leave the pet with a relative, friend, or boarding pet store while you’re gone, or use other methods of transport. The dog will show up at its location as well as return back home healthfully and securely if you begin planning in advance.

Reservation

Not all airlines allow pets on board and many of them do not accept more than 2 animals per flight. So it will be better if you make consult with the customer service of the airline you are planning to fly with, before making any plans. Chances are that they will provide you with a list of requirements to fulfill, which may cost you several days.

Some airlines allow instant booking services for pets and others require travelers to inform about their pets at least 4 to 7 days prior to the actual flight day. After that time period, they will accept any pet reservations no matter how much you request. So, make sure you inform the airlines about traveling with your cat or dog for at least 4 to 7 working days.

As most airlines accept only a handful of pets inside their cabins and as checked baggage, it will be wise to make the reservation as early as possible.

Almost all airlines allow service dogs and emotional support pets to travel for free. They will require you to provide legal documentation ascertaining that the pet is actually a service animal or emotional support pet. Provide this documentation while reserving for the service animals. They will let you know the rules and regulations once you make your booking. 

Your Pets Personal Needs

Like humans, all pets are different and so are their needs. Make sure you take a careful look at the things that your pet will need in order to enjoy the trip. Keeping an eye on these things will offer your pet a stress-free journey and you can rest assured too –

  1. Make sure the pet is familiar with the container. If you introduce the container to your pet just on the day of travel, things can get messy. Pets love to stay in their familiar environments and when unknown things come face to face, they panic – just like us. Even if you manage to put your pet inside the container somehow, they will surely not enjoy the flight and stay in fear. So, introduce the container to your pet at least one or two weeks earlier than the scheduled flight.
  1. Take the dog to the pet relief area before the flight. It was a serious problem in the past as most of the airports did not have any pet relied areas back then. But now this is not the case. Almost all international airports in the world now have designated pet relief areas. Take your pet to one of these places before checking-in, to make sure the pet does not relieve him/herself while on the flight. If they do so, the airline will make you clean that mess and it will certainly ruin your flight.
  1. Have something familiar inside the container. Pets can freak out while the plane takes off or lands. So, provide something which he/she likes to spend his time inside the container so that he/she stays busy. It can be a toy or his/her favorite blanket or anything else. Having something to play with will certainly make their journey a lot less stressful.
  1. Provide food and liquid inside the container. Although some airlines prohibit travelers from putting any food or water inside the container, most of them do not. So, if your airline allows it, make sure to have something inside the container that your pet can eat. Flying is a new experience for most pets and when the initial fear wears off, they will surely get hungry. And if the flight is a long one, then this step is a must one to follow. But if you have any connecting flights and have spare time between them, you can feed the pet during that time also. But make sure not to overfeed the pet.

Trust the safest transport company in the United States for your pets

It’s much tougher to shift with the pet than you would think. If you do have multiple animals, it becomes even more challenging. With our in-depth guidance, you can learn about the greatest dog shippers.

There are a few choices available to ensure that the dog, cat, or other animal joins you in your new place. You can either end up driving it yourself or have it driven for you by a trained professional transporter. For faster resettlement, you can also hire a pet travel agency to fly the furry as well as a leathery family friend to you.

Major pet shipping companies

Air Animal Pet Movers

Air Animal Pet Movers has been providing reputed international pet shipping facilities since 1977. It was formed by vets and offers great vet assistance, including an examination by a Department of agriculture accredited vet and verification of the computer chip to create an international medical certificate. Both for internal and overseas movements, Air Animal provides both air-land shipping.

Features

Good and balanced veterinarians’ assistance for health credentials; offers helpful internet tools, including how-to clips; provides animal customs procedures at all big gateways; can not provide animal accommodation alternatives;  A few competing companies’ prices may be lower than this one. Air Animals is a pet transportation company that works throughout all 50 states and also worldwide.

Airpets International

For more than thirty years, Airpets International has now been transporting pets around the world. The Department of agriculture backs the corporation, which guarantees that the animals will be transported on a pet-friendly plane with temperature regulations. Pampering, workout, and specially made crating and animal shelters are among the extra services offered by Airpets International.

Features

Utilize IATA-approved air animal shelters; has on-staff vets; provides army relocation discounted rates; price levels may be significantly greater than competing companies; Lengthy phone standby occasions have been mentioned in user reviews.

Airpets International provides a wide range of animal shipment systems to support that the furry friend is as comfortable as possible during his or her journey. The corporation’s pet accommodation solutions, which include airy, temperature-controlled nighttime amenities, are a standout feature. This gives you more control about when the pet arrives at their new place while ensuring that they are comfy.

Happy Tails Travel, Inc.

Happy Tails Travel provides internal ground transportation for dogs and cats, with special discounts for numerous pets being shipped. It also serves as a global distribution network, shipping to nearly every country on the planet and assisting in the clearance process.

Features

Happy Tails Travel offers a broad array of services both for internal and overseas transitions for dogs and cats. In addition, the company collaborates with temporary shelters and vets and provides welfare services, such as animal shelters, from before the training, and other air-land transportation requirements.

Exec Pet

Exec Pet is headquartered in Atlanta but provides the entire bottom 48 provinces. As a corporation, they specialize in internal movements across the nation, allowing them to complete trips in hours rather than days. To make sure a customized travel policy, they take priority to speed, wellness, and coziness with better travel methods.

Features

Their operators are much more than experts; they are serving or nearing retirement military personnel. They have a wide range of abilities, including superior driving skills and strong attention to detail. They are dependable and competent, making any trip with the pet family a breeze.

PetAir UK

PetAir UK is premised in the United Kingdom and is presently one of the only systems in the region run by vets, ensuring your dog’s security. They have, even so, shipped over 12,000 pets ever since.

Features

PetAir UK serves a wide range of global locations. They choose airline companies and airfares for the pet with care in order to provide the most pleasant ride conceivable.

When you entrust the pet to PetAir UK, you can expect the highest standard of service and assistance all through the moving process. They could really manage all of the appropriate documentation, which is more than enough for global relocation. They create customized containers and assist with immunizations and medical checks.

Major airlines carriers

1. Alaska Airlines

The best company for moving with an animal is Alaska Airlines. It had some of the best rates as well as the most adaptable pet policies when it came to the kinds of animals that could be brought.

They charge around 100 USD per pet container for pets inside the cabin. Travelers are allowed to carry two pets inside the same container which reduces the cost by half per pet. You can take dogs and cats as well as other pets as checked baggage while traveling by Alaska Airlines.

2. American Airlines

American Airlines allows travelers to take their pets with them inside the cabin or as checked baggage. Their pet policy is very simple and does not require travelers to do much. Their service of pets inside the cabin will cost 125 USD per pet and for pets as checked baggage, their charges start from 200 USD. Pets that are too large to be inside the cabin can be transported as checked baggage.

3. Hawaiian Air

Hawaiian Air allows dogs, kitties, as well as domestic fowls, and only cats and dogs have been permitted to travel while being inside the cabins. Animals both in the compartment and the freight must have a medical certificate.

The cost of flying with pets inside the compartment is 125 USD for every trip. The price increases to 225 USD for every flight if the pet is bigger and has to travel in freight or as checked-in luggage.

4. Southwest Airlines

Southwest accepts animals on an early-booking, initially-served basis and does not allow them to fly worldwide. Just 6 animals are allowed for every aircraft, including one carrier per traveler keep in mind if you do have several pets—though they do enable more than 1 animal per shipper when it can fit securely.

One of the baggage components will be this. If the dog is snarling, trying to bite, peeing, or scraping, Southwest stockpiles the option to reject the check-in process.

They charge a flat rate of 95 USD per pet container and the charges are fully refundable in case you change your mind.

5. Spirit Airlines

Spirit Airlines is characterized by relatively low fares, but the dog’s ticket could be just as expensive as yours! Kitties, pups, small home fowls, and limited household hares are the only animals allowed inside the compartment on this air carrier.

Travelers pay 110 USD each way for every dog crate. Each holder can hold up to 2 animals, as long as it fits conveniently.

Animals are not allowed in the luggage compartment on Spirit Airlines. Pets which are too big to fit in baggage will not be able to travel.

Personalized care

After completing the check-in process and getting on the aircraft, inform the pilot that a pet is traveling with you. You can also inform one or more flight staff that there is a pet with you and let them know any personalized care your pet may require while being on the plane. They will certainly provide you with the necessary assistance of any kind.

stop worrying about your pet’s journey

Air travel for pets was a subject of great risk in the past decades. But, the situation has improved a lot now. There is certainly every kind of precautionary step available for ensuring that a pet can have a suitable and memorable journey. Just stop worrying about the journey and research properly about how you can stop every possible problem. Start by discovering the current requirements for entering and exiting your desired country. Follow-up by consulting with the airlines with which you will be traveling. They will surely assure you to be worry-free.

Dropoff and pick-up points

If you are keeping the pet inside of the cabin with you, then you will not have to worry about this step as the pet will remain with you throughout every point of the journey. But, if you are transporting your pet as checked baggage or as cargo, then you will have to drop off the pet before checking in at the airport terminal to the airline’s staff. You and the pet will check in separately. After you hand over the pet to the staff they will take care of the next steps.

After you land in the desired location, you will have to complete your exit requirements and then wait for the pet at the luggage receiving area. Your pet may come with other luggage or the staff can bring the pet separately for you. It generally takes about one and half hours for the luggage to arrive after the plane lands. Wait for the pet and pick him/her up from the designated area.

TSA Guidelines

  1. Kindly take the pet out of the travel case and run it thru the X-ray computer. You must use a strap to keep the pet under the supervision and memorize to extract it when taking the pet thru the body scanner. Animal carriers will be inspected visually and/or physically.
  1. TSA also suggests using a container made of polycarbonate materials which are generally waterproof and handy.
  1. TSA suggests consulting properly with the airline staff before making the booking and once again after arriving at the terminal. As airline pet policies vary widely, consulting with them will ensure that you do not face any difficulties.
  1. A stroll metal detector would be used to check you as well as your assistance animal. You can either walk go along or individually with the dog on a dog’s collar. You would be stopped and searched if you do not choose to be scanned by the stroll body scanner. If indeed the machine goes off, you as well as the service animal will be subjected to further security checks, which may include a pat-down.
  1. X-ray and otherwise investigation monitoring is required for therapy dog medicines. Please keep meds isolated and tell the TSA executive that you’re carrying them for the service dog.

Planning

Start planning the trip at least 7 to 10 days prior to the scheduled flight. To keep the pet with you while making the journey, you will have to go through various steps and fill a lot of requirements. Which may consume a lot of time. So start planning the journey as early as possible.

Preparing

  1. For the trip, pick a good animal-friendly airline. Not all airline companies have pet transportation policies that are appropriate. The majority of them will have stringent conditions that must be met until you can make the journey with the companion. Recognize those who are pet-friendly and have sensible and adaptable prerequisites and then you’ll have no trouble adhering to them.
  1. Communicate with the consulate of the nation where you intend to travel. If you’re traveling within the United States, this section won’t apply to you. However, in the context of external air travel, this aspect is extremely important. Your itinerary’s destination country may have particular pet entry requirements that your airline companies may overlook. As a result, reaching them straightforwardly will assist you in learning more about the customs clearance, confinement times, and other relevant information.
  1. Purchase an appropriate container and train the pet to be used. Pet boxes are subject to stringent airline rules and regs. They specify the box’s aspects as well as the components it is made of. As a result, carefully read the canister prerequisites section and buy one that meets all of them.
  1. Start preparing all of your creds in accordance with the airline’s requirements.  Pet transportation may necessitate extra documentation from air carriers. If you don’t begin collecting them in advance, they’ll cause headaches when it’s time to use them. Some of them you should already have; everything you have to do now is make them up-to-date. Health credentials, shipping permits, pet passports, and microchips are just a few examples.
  1. Watch the weather prediction for the day of your trip. As we previously stated, airlines may impose thermal constraints on animal transportation. Check to see if the climate on the day of the flight would be appropriate for the dog.

More Resource

  1. What are The Main Rules of Traveling by Air with Pets?
  2. How Do you Prepare your Pet for Air Travel?
  3. How to Travel with a Dog on a Plane?
  4. How Are Pets Transported on Airplanes?
  5. Complete Guide to Pet Health Certificate
  6. Why Don’t Most Low-Cost Airlines Allow Pets?
  7. How to choose best pet shipping companies
  8. Ultimate guide to cat moving service

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