Moving to a new place, whether by choice or for a job, is a big decision that requires a lot of forethought and planning. This becomes more complicated when you add pets into the mix. Making the move with pets is neither easy for you, nor it is a cakewalk for them. But if you put in a lot of thought, do a thorough research, and plan your move keeping your pet’s best interest in mind, you should be able to make it a little bit easier on the two of you.
Besides, a move with a pet or pets can’t be planned in a jiffy. Give yourself time to think expansively. After all, your furry one depends on its master to get to the new home safely. Thinking on similar lines, we have gathered a list of few tips to make sure you have got everything covered from top to bottom when relocating with your dearest pet or pets.
Tip 1: Do a thorough research on pet import laws
In the United States of America, laws differ from state to state and pet import laws are no exception. Whether, you are moving to Minnesota or New York, it’s critical that you learn all you can about your new home state in terms of bringing your pets – especially since some states may restrict entry of certain animals, or allow specific breeds only. Other than import laws, you shall also read about general guidelines as to which vaccines need to be given or your pet is required to be microchipped or not before the move. Also, you must verify if there will be a mandated quarantine period before the move. However, for the most up-to-date information, talk to the state’s counsel for a clearer understanding.
Tip 2: Talk to your veterinarian
If you are going to move with your pets internationally or nationally, you should be in regular contact with the veterinarian. It’s your vet who will be able to advocate your pet’s best interests without any bias. For instance, is it safe for your pet to take a long flight, or if your pet is unfit to ride in the cargo. Also, if the pet is too young, they may advice you to put your pet in a pet friendly hotel or boarding place for a while. Your vet may also prescribe some anti-anxiety medication to calm down your pet during the transit. Don’t forget to make an appointment with your veterinarian before the move. Also, your current vet may suggest a few good vets based out in the place you are moving to.
Tip 3: Work with a pet relocation service
Worrying how would you move along with your loving pet? I suggest don’t. Nowadays, there are ample number of pet relocation service providers available which make it easy as ABC for you and the pet. When you search online, you will find a myriad list of good organizations to avail services from. These service providers help you with everything from making sure you follow all the pet import rules of your destination to arranging your pet’s safe travel itself. Also, you can read some of the success stories and tips given by people who have braved the path before you – an incredibly useful asset when you are anxious for self and the hairy one.
Tip 4: Timing is everything
When it is all about making an international move, the visa process can be a long one – as long as six months for some countries, such as USA. If you don’t start early enough, you will have to make arrangements for your pet to come to you at a later time; a scenario that’s unlikely for either of you. While you arrange all the documents and complete the paperwork, don not forget to pay close attention to the timeline.
Tip 5: Start getting your pet comfortable in the crate as early as possible
If you are required to move via flight, your pet would go along with the cargo. To make your pet comfortable within a crate, buy a travel crate immediately and start the process of acclimating them to it. Not all pets would like to sit in their crates right away, so you must build positive associations. The more you can build a strong association for the crate as a safe place, the better. You can encourage your pet to explore the crate by keeping his/her favorite treats and meals in there and gradually put blankets and a favorite toy in there as well. Although crates might seem restraining at first, but they can actually be very comforting to your pet.
Tip 6: Call you airline
If you are moving internationally, start with booking your tickets. Also, keep in mind to choose an airline which offer pet-friendly travelling services. You may also call the airline you intend to travel on and ask about their options and guidelines related your pet. It’s possible that the airline may have additional rules for travel and they can also fill you in specifics regarding crate or carrier size and what you and your pet need to bring along. If your pet is under a certain weight category you can also find out about arranging to have them fly in-cabin with you (they will stay in their carrier under the seat in front of you, happy and relaxed).
Tip 7: Keep all your documents in order
Make sure you have all documents ready. The documents may include name of your pet, vaccine details, a letter from your vet with a clearance certificate stating they are fit to travel, or other requirements notified by your airline and the country or state you are moving to. Carry multiple copies with you, and ensure that everything is signed exactly where it needs to be. Missing or incomplete paper work can mean unwanted delays. Worse, it can mean your pets denied entry in the flight.
Advanced planning is the key to moving with pets. If you happen to receive any pet care things by USPS post, don’t forget to enable USPS change of address forwarding so that you are not missing any supplies at your new address.
Start as early as you can, and be thorough so you know you are not missing anything. Vets, pet relocation companies, and your new country’s consulate or embassy are all excellent resources, and you should never be afraid to ask all your questions (and if you don’t understand an answer – keep asking until you do!). Having your furry one in your new home is worth all the effort. Happy travel and happy tails!