Pet Friendly Hotel
Traveling with your Pet
Because pets have an instinctive fear of new surroundings, pet owners want to help them adjust quickly. This article will provide a checklist of things to do to see that your pets will be happy--courtesy of Stevens Worldwide Van Lines. Pre-planning for the transfer of your pet, as well as for your household goods, should begin as soon as you know you are going to move. This article covers the following topics:
This is the key to an easier transfer, regardless of the mode of transportation chosen. Travel arrangements should be completed as far in advance of moving day as is practical, keeping departure day tasks to a minimum. One person in the family should assume responsibility for the pet. Be sure to discuss the transfer of your pet with your travel agent. Your agent can help you select the best way to transfer your pet, offer helpful suggestions, and assist with, or take care of, any necessary shipping arrangements. The agent may recommend a pet handling agency that will take care of all the details of shipping pets, including boarding, pick-up, and delivery. Costs vary according to services rendered.
1. Take pet to veterinarian for checkup and health documentsapply for entry permit if one is needed; inquire about sedation for pet; obtain pet's health record; schedule second visit to vet if necessary; ask your vet to recommend a colleague in the new city.
2. Obtain travel identification tag.
3. Check destination state's pet entry regulations.
STATE AND LOCAL REGULATIONS
North Dakota Law : Nearly every state has laws applicable to the entry of dogs, cats, horses, psittacine birds (birds of the parrot family), and other pets. Tropical fish are the only exception. It is important to comply with the laws of the state to which you are moving; otherwise, you may be subject to prosecution. Stevens Van Lines suggests contacting the North Dakota Veterinarian in the capital city of your new home state well in advance of your move for specific laws concerning entry of your pet.
A few states have border inspection of all animals being imported; others have random inspection by department of agriculture officials or the state highway patrol; some check interstate health certificates; many depend on individual compliance with the law; and a number rely on a combination of these methods. Representatives of the state department of agriculture are usually present at airports to inspect any pets arriving by air.
Local Regulations : The majority of communities in the United North Dakotas have enacted pet control and licensing ordinances. In many instances these relate only to dogs, but increasing numbers of cities are applying them to cats as well. Local laws may limit the number of dogs or cats permitted in one household.
Most communities prohibit the stabling of horses, ponies and other livestock within city limits. Where permitted, minimum distance from the barn to you and your neighbors' houses may be specified, as well as size of pasture required. You may have to stable your animal(s) outside the city limits.
License fees and the length of time a new resident has in which to obtain a license for a pet vary from place to place. Contact the city clerk at the destination city or town hall for specific information.
The documents pertaining to your pet's health are important. You may be asked to show them at anytime, especially when traveling, so it is advisable to keep them handy. Any or all of the following may be required:
Health Certificate : Interstate health certificates must accompany dogs and horses entering nearly all states. About half have the same requirement for cats, birds and other pets. In some cases, advance receipt of the health certificate by the destination state's regulatory agency is a prerequisite to entry of the pet.
The health certificate must include a complete description of the pet, list all inoculations it has had, and state that it is free from infectious diseases.
Have your pet examined by your veterinarian well in advance of departure date so there will be time for any treatment or inoculations recommended. Another examination just prior to departure may be necessary. If the pet is excitable, or prone to motion sickness when traveling, ask the vet to prescribe medication for it. Also ask if a colleague in your new area can be recommended.
Permit : Some pets must have entry permits issued by the destination state's regulatory agency. Either you or your veterinarian may apply for the permit, for which there may be a charge. Receipt of an interstate health certificate from the state of origin may be requisite to issuance of the permit.
NOTE : Validity of health certificates and permits is strictly limited in several states. If moving to one of these, be sure your pet arrives within the valid period.
Rabies Tag : All but four states require dogs to have rabies inoculation, and a number have the same regulation for cats. North Dakota and local laws usually stipulate that the rabies tag be securely attached to the pet's collar.
In addition to permanent identity and rabies tags, both dogs and cats should be provided with special travel identification tags. A luggage- type tag with space on both sides for writing is excellent for this particular purpose. The tag should include the pet's name, your name and destination address, and the name and address of an alternate person to contact in case you cannot be located. Other pets are less apt to become lost, but birds are sometimes identified by leg bands; horses and ponies by brands, tattoos, color photos, and/or registration papers. The pet's health certificate may also be used for identification.
Pets cannot be moved on the moving van. Nor, except for Seeing- Eye dogs accompanying blind persons, are they permitted on trains or buses. So ways of pet transport are limited to two: ( I ) By Air with the pet either accompanying you, or in an appropriate container traveling as air freight; or (2) In your personal motor vehicle.
Transportation by Air
Airlines that accept pets for transportation have specific regulations covering their passage, whether they are accompanied or unaccompanied. When making inquiries, be sure to ask about transportation charges and pet insurance.
Some airlines permit pets in passenger cabins IF they are of a size to be kept in a carrier no larger than 21" x 1 8" x 8" high, that can be kept under the seat. Larger pets must travel as air freight (see "Unaccompanied Pets").
Reservations should be made well in advance of departure date as the number of pets permitted on a flight is strictly limited, and pet approval is granted on a first-come-first-served basis. A Seeing-Eye dog, properly harnessed, normally travels free in the cabin at its master's feet. However, the airline must be notified in advance that the dog will be on the flight.
If your pet is to travel in the cabin, take it with you when you check in. If as air freight, it must be delivered to the freight terminal in time to assure inclusion on your flight.
Should your trip require a transfer between airlines, check pet regulations of the second airline in advance to be sure that pets are carried. There is no through-checking of pets between airlines, so it will be your responsibility to see that connections are made at the transfer point.
Dogs and cats should be shipped via air freight; birds, tropical fish, and small pets such as hamster or gerbils, by air express, a division of air freight. Make shipping arrangements as far in advance as possible so space can be reserved and any details about the flight settled. Follow all shipping instructions carefully.
YOU will be responsible for:
- Providing the shipping container, legibly and durably marked with both you and the consignee's (person to whom the pet is being shipped) name, address and phone number
- Advance payment of shipping charges
- Providing required health documents
- Delivery of pet to the air freight terminal on time
- Signing of the Air Waybill (shipping papers)
- Pick up at destination
- Notifying consignee as to airline and flight number the pet will be on, and place, date and time of arrival.
Shipping containers should withstand jostling, bumps, and the possibility of damage caused by other freight falling on them. Ample cross ventilation and a leak proof bottom with an absorbent layer are a must.
For dogs and cats, many airlines recommend the travel kennels obtainable from their own freight departments at very reasonable cost. Suitable shipping and travel kennels and carriers for dogs, cats and small pets may be purchased at many pet shops. Mail order houses--Sears, J.C. Penney Montgomery Ward, and others, also offer a variety of cages and carriers.
Tropical fish are best "packed" for shipment by pet suppliers specializing in tropical fish. Look in the Yellow Pages under "Tropical Fish" and "Aquariums and Aquarium Supplies."
Pets are generally loaded on the plane last so they will be nearest the door and can be unloaded first. If the pet is not picked up at destination within a reasonable time, it will be boarded at the owner's expense at a kennel or other appropriate place.
Regulations for shipping pets by air were formulated to assure that all pets arrive at destination safely. The weather is a major concern. It is better to ship pets only during moderate weather, and then either on early morning or late evening flights. They should be in appropriate carriers, sedated if the veterinarian so advises, and picked up without delay at destination.
Pre-planning for Air Travel
If pet is being shipped via air freight and your departure precedes that of pet, make boarding and shipping arrangements at point of origin.
Make flight reservations. Follow airline instructions carefully.
Arrange to have tropical fish professionally "packed" by a tropical fish dealer or aquarium supply company.
Obtain shipping container or carrier (for dog or cat) a week or two prior to departure date. Accustom pet to it gradually, a few minutes at first, increasing the time daily. Pet's nap time is a good time to start, and placing its blanket or a favorite toy in the carrier helps.
Purchase shipping container for bird or small pet from pet supply company.
If pet's departure precedes yours, make any necessary pick up and boarding arrangements at destination. Be sure consignee has complete flight schedule and name of airport where pet will arrive (some cities have more than one airport), as well as the Air Waybill number.
If you choose air freight, you must also:
Leave your pet with someone for shipment later on when you will be able to pick the pet up at destination yourself; or
- Decide whether to ship the pet before you leave and have it cared for at destination until your arrival; and
- Appoint someone reliable to take charge of the pet at either origin or destination point.
Day of Departure
Deliver pet to air terminal on time if traveling with you, 45 minutes before departure; if via air freight, two hours prior to flight time.
Feed pet no less than five or six hours before flight time; normally, no additional food is required for at least 12 hours. Give pet a drink of water about two hours before take-off.
Be certain that names, addresses and telephone contacts of persons responsible for pet at both destination and origin cities are legibly and durably marked on the container, and on pet's travel identification tag.
Exercise pet on leash at airport and administer any necessary medication before confining it to shipping container. Attach pet's leash firmly to outside of container.
Notify consignee that pet is on the way. Pet can usually be picked up within 60 to 90 minutes after arrival of flight. It is advisable for consignee to phone the airline's cargo office in advance to be sure flight is on time. The Air Waybill number is useful when making inquiries.
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