Before moving your pet, here are some important reminders:
- Schedule an examination by a veterinarian
- Your veterinarian may suggest a tranquilizer or other precautionary measure
- Obtain copies of your pet’s health and vaccination records and update identification tags
If you will travel by air, contact the airline well in advance to check regulations and services and to make reservations. Book a weekday flight when there tends to be more cargo room. Also, try to book a direct flight to reduce your pet’s confinement time. Select a portable air-transport kennel that’s large enough for your pet to stand and move around. Most airlines sell or rent these special carriers. Let your pet get accustomed to the kennel in advance of the trip. Mark the container “Live Animal,” and affix a label that includes your pet’s name, new address, phone number, and special handling instructions.
If you will travel by car, acquaint your pet with car travel by taking it for short drives around the neighborhood. Don’t feed your pet for several hours prior to your trip. Do, however, pack a canteen of fresh, cool water and stop frequently for drinks and walks. If you stay overnight in a hotel, determine ahead of time if pets are welcome.
Birds and small pets such as hamsters can travel by car in their cages, provided the cage is stable, properly ventilated, and protected from drafts. Covering the cage may help to keep your pet calm.
Finally — and this is important for all pets at all times — never leave an animal unattended in a car. Even in moderately warm weather, the temperature inside a car can reach 120 degrees in just a few minutes. Conversely, in winter months, the temperature can drop well below freezing before you realize it. Resources for Moving with Pets The following links are to sites that you may find useful.