International travel already takes a lot of preparation for humans. It’s even more complicated if they plan to bring their pets along. There are plenty of things to consider if you want a hassle-free trip with your fur baby, from bringing the necessary papers to checking if your accommodations have specific amenities for animal companions.
Of course, you’ll also want to do what you can to help your pet stay relaxed during your trip. This can mean bringing a few practical items along, such as your pup’s favorite fully custom plush dog toys, foldable travel food and water bowls, or even pet clothes and accessories that are suitable for the weather at your destination.
Are you planning to bring your furry friend on a trip abroad anytime soon? If so, read on for a few tips you should know before you take your pet on your next overseas getaway.
Look Up and Prepare For Your Destination Country’s Pet Travel Policies
Each country has different rules about traveling with pets, so it’s best to do your research on your destination country’s pet immigration policies beforehand. To be sure, prepare documents such as health certificates, export documents from your origin country, and your pet’s current vaccination records. You should also provide a record of your dog’s parasite prevention and titer blood tests.
Don’t have any health certificates or international travel documents for your pup yet? Don’t worry. In the US, some USDA-accredited veterinarians are authorized to issue international health certificates. You can also work with a pet transport agency to help you out with pet passports and other documents.
Be Prepared in Case Your Pup Has to Be Quarantined Upon Arrival
Some destination countries may require your dog to undergo quarantine upon arrival. If this is giving you some anxiety, don’t fret. Quarantine facilities are usually supervised by professional staff and offer animal companions plenty of space to move around freely. Many of these facilities also allow you to visit your pup from time to time until the quarantine period is over.
Have Your Pup Microchipped (If You Haven’t Already)
Depending on the country you plan on going to, you may have to get your pet microchipped before you and your furry friend will be allowed to travel there. This is because, should they go missing, pets with microchips have much higher chances of being reunited with their owners compared to those without them.
If you do invest in a microchip for your fur baby, make sure that it conforms to ISO Standards. That way, you can rest assured that the microchip will work as intended when it’s scanned by whoever finds your pet.
Check Your Airline’s Cabin and Cargo Rules
Before you book a flight, make sure that you’re fully aware of your airline’s rules for bringing pets. To give you a general idea of what to expect, dogs that are below 20 pounds are usually allowed to stay with you in the airplane cabin. Meanwhile, dogs that are heavier than 20 pounds are considered excess cargo and will have to stay in the cargo area.
Your airline may also have weather-related travel restrictions for pets. For safety reasons, airlines will not allow dogs to travel when temperatures go beyond 85°F or below 45°F. This is because, at these temperatures, the cargo area would be too hot for animals to stay in.
For Connecting Flights with Different Airlines, Check Both Airlines’ Policies on Pets
If you’ll be traveling on a connecting flight with two different airlines, make sure that both airlines allow pets onboard. After all, the last thing you’d want during your vacation is to have to leave your pup behind in an airport while you board your next flight. You also wouldn’t want to have to cancel either of your flights entirely because of this easy but preventable mistake.
Always Keep an ID Tag Attached to Your Pet’s Collar
If you and your pet are traveling to an unfamiliar place, it would be good to make your pup easily identifiable in any way you can.
One fool-proof method is to attach an identification tag to your pup’s collar. This tag should display your contact details, such as your name, phone number, and email address. That way, should your pup go missing during your trip, anyone who runs across your pup will know how to get in touch with you and reunite you with your fur baby.
Conclusion: Do Your Part to Give Your Pet a Paw-sitive Travel Experience
Bringing a pet on an overseas vacation can be an exciting and memorable experience for both of you. However, preparing for the big trip can be quite tedious and stressful, especially if you don’t know exactly what you have to do. But once you’ve taken care of all the necessary travel requirements for yourself and your pet, you can rest easy knowing that everything’s ready for your upcoming getaway.