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Moving my dog from UK to Texas, please help!

Moving my dog from UK to Texas, please help!

Old Sep 29th 2010, 7:34 pm
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Default Moving my dog from UK to Texas, please help!

Hi

I am looking to move my dog from the UK to Texas. He is a 5 year old border collie.

He use to have a pet passport and I took him to spain with me and although I know it has expired am happy to renew this and do all the rabies tests etc again before taking him over there.

I'm wondering however if someone can advise if there is a quarantine period when I get him there? If so how long would this be and would it be in kennels somewhere?

Also any idea of the expense involved? It cost me £1000 to fly him to Spain and back so I'm worried how much a flight to Texas would be.

Any advice would be much appreciate.

Thanks
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Old Sep 29th 2010, 7:54 pm
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Default Re: Moving my dog from UK to Texas, please help!

Hello

We moved our 5 year old Border Collie from Aberdeen to Houston 4 weeks ago!

You don't need a pet passport to fly him here, but it's a good idea to get it while you're in the UK to get him back. There is no quarentine coming into the US as long at your dog meets all the requirements. He needs the rabies shots and proof that the blood test was negative. He needs to be given a fit to fly certificate just before flying (I think it was 3 days before ours got his) from a UK vet. Most of this is a rip off and I think we were about 300 pounds ish all in for the medical side of things.
You can either use a pet carrier company or do it yourself. We looked into this and it was about 1500 pounds minimum for us, so that's why we did it ourselves. Either way you have to pay the vets fees on top.
We flew ours over ourselves on the same KLM flights as us as excess baggage. It was about 350 eur and he had to overnight in Amsterdam in the pet hotel there because of the planes types that were being used. The plane needs to have a suitable pet section of the hold. In our case it was the afternoon flight from Aberdeen but the morning flight from Amsterdam. If your pet is staying in Amsterdam for more than 1hr they make you book into the pet hotel anyway so it makes no difference cost wise 1 hour or 1 day.
If you do this, you need to provide your own dog cage. We bought ours on line for about 50 pounds. There are all sorts of requirements for pet cages for different airlines so use the calculations provided by the airline you decide to use to work out what size cage you need. The dog needs to be able to stand up and turn around with room to spare. Your vet will check our the pet cage at the same time as your fit to fly check. You then need to copy the certificate and tape it to the cage along with stickers saying live animal and all sorts of bumf like that.

KLM were great. They lost his booking when we went to the airport to check him in but as we had a printed copy of everything, all was fine. Sam went off in his cage through the excess baggage section in Aberdeen and we picked him up from the excess baggage section in Houston. He was clean as was his cage. We got KLM staff in amsterdam to check he was okay in the kennels on the night and in the morning which they were more than happy to do. When we boarded we were told by 3 different people that our dog was onboard and settled.
If you want to know anything else I'm happy to help. You can always PM me if needs be.
Good luck and I can honestly say, it was not that bad organising it ourselves. You will read some horror stories on here about pet transfer but ours was fine.

One more thing I forgot, if you do bring him over you need to get him to the vet asap for heartworm pills. The mossies carry heartworm which is really quite vile for dogs and you need to get pills. We didn't know anything about that and thought we were super organised!

Last edited by Weeze; Sep 29th 2010 at 8:18 pm. Reason: forgot about heartworm
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Old Sep 29th 2010, 8:44 pm
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Default Re: Moving my dog from UK to Texas, please help!

American dogs run on 110v, not 240v. I would just sell it and buy another unit here. They're pretty cheap. You buy new or used.
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Old Sep 29th 2010, 10:47 pm
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Default Re: Moving my dog from UK to Texas, please help!

I just flew here from the UK with my dog on KLM and I agree with Weeze with some minor differences. My case was a little different in a couple of things. I flew from Heathrow and had a 2 hour layover in Amsterdam before my flight on to Houston. My dog was supposed to go to the Pet Hotel (free under 2 hrs) between flights but our flight from Heathrow was delayed and there was only 1.5 hrs layover and they said that was not enough time to do it so he was in his crate from 4:30am until I landed at IAH at 7:30pm (UK time). I had to make a bit of a scene (albeit fairly quietly!) to make sure he was given water before the Houston leg. They kept saying, he's fine, don't worry, when I started questioning them about his welfare and whereabouts. Yeah right. I had three people running around in the end and they swore he had been given water downstairs in the holding area waiting to be boarded. My dog is a bit nervous anyway at loud noises so a plane is not an ideal environment for him and I am sure that had a lot to do with everything but he was very stressed when we picked him up at IAH. KLM also didn't get him off the plane immediately like they promised MANY times and he was sitting in the Houston heat for longer than I would have liked, because of his breed. It cost me just over £200 to fly him as he didn't have the night in the Pet Hotel and the paperwork part was pretty easy. My Vet didn't cost anywhere near what Weeze had to pay, £55 so she certainly was ripped off but I already had the Pet Passport. Even then the rabies shot etc wasn't anywhere near that amount when I first got it. He also didn't ask about the crate. The type crate is very important and must be IATA approved. Vari Kennels are usually used. Ours cost £80 because I had to get a bigger crate. Also as Weeze said, the size has to be right, go up one size if there is any doubt. The health certificate had to be issued between 48 hours and 8 days (I think it was 8 days, could be 10) before flying and the Tick and Worm treatment not more than 48 hrs and not less than 24hrs. I don't think that was absolutely necessary but KLM said I had to have it so I did. At Houston, customs said "just show me the rabies document" that he barely even glanced at and that was it. I started the Heartworm treatment for my dog about two months before he travelled as I know all about that from living here and wanted to give him a head start. Do not think that isn't important, your dog probably will get Heartworms if you don't keep him on the treatment and he's outside at all.

Having said all this would I use KLM again? Yes, except that I would make sure there was enough of a layover even with delays to enable him to go to the Pet Hotel between flights. The little extra money involved would be well worth it and it is still loads cheaper than any other airline. I was quoted £1600 with BA using a shipper, now required by them and I couldn't use Continental anyway because of the breed (he's a bulldog X). They quoted me just over £1000 until they found out the breed then they refused to fly him.

It is quite easy really. Just a case of getting the paperwork done and flight sorted out. But, if you are anything like me, I was worried sick about my dog the whole time! Good luck and if you have any questions you will get loads of help here.
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Old Sep 30th 2010, 1:11 am
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Default Re: Moving my dog from UK to Texas, please help!

Might be worth a search as this subject comes up a lot, especially people moving to Houston.
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Old Sep 30th 2010, 1:34 am
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Default Re: Moving my dog from UK to Texas, please help!

Can't help with any info regarding moving one over, but a friend of mine who just moved to Houston priced up moving the dog back to the UK (just out of interest) and said the cost of returning a dog was about 3x higher than bringing them out here. If you're not here for long, it may be worth thinking about leaving him with family if you're strapped for cash.
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Old Oct 2nd 2010, 2:11 pm
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Default Re: Moving my dog from UK to Texas, please help!

Other half of Weeze here, she's left herself logged in. I'll clarify a couple of things, as I did the paperwork & bookings for this - Weeze had to suffer my mad rantings and ramblings about the whole move in general.

The 300 GBP was for everything involved in the vet fees - so there was getting his vaccinations up to date, as there were due soon anyway, the rabies shot itself, the cost of the blood test, the charge for the pet passport document itself, and the cost of the pre-flight fitness to fly.

The KLM "free" period at Schiphol is 2 hrs, as someone else posted. We had to do it over 2 days anyway, as there are 2 x flights out of Aberdeen, and potentially the 1st flight might be too small for the size of kennel. KLM just can't guarantee which one it will be. We were using a large varikennel (around 85 GBP online). The checklist on the KLM website will tell you everything you need to know for getting the dog onto the plane - what docs you need etc. Scan & photocopy everything!!! Try to get everything in writing, as some of the rules have changed recently (previously you couldn't fly dogs into Houston in the height of summer, some KLM staff think that is still the case). We were meant to be charges 150 EUR for the flight and 200 EUR for the overnight (it could have been the other way around) but we didn't end up paying that much - it was about 180 GBP all in to KLM. Attach as many water troughs to the inside as you can - gaffer tape them - you don't want them getting knocked off.

Edinburgh airport is another option - they could do it all in the same day. To be honest, I think it was better doing it over 2 days, but that was more because of our little one than the dog.

On arriving at Houston, as soon as they saw he was from the UK they didn't even look at documentation. They were only concerned about the loose food in the carrier bag we had attached to the side (I couldn't get a definiate answer on whether you needed to provide food, so I attached some dry food and nibbles, none of which were used).

The other option was to use KLM Cargo's agents in Glasgow (possibly called Schenken) and they were around 800 GBP. They were a lot cheaper than any of the other companies around.

Bringing them back is more expensive as the UK government has essentially restricted who and how animals can be brought in - for example, with KLM you can only use their Cargo service. They can also only be brought into certain airports.

Hope that helps
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Old Oct 2nd 2010, 4:26 pm
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Default Re: Moving my dog from UK to Texas, please help!

Originally Posted by nicolmcco View Post
Hi

I am looking to move my dog from the UK to Texas. He is a 5 year old border collie.

He use to have a pet passport and I took him to spain with me and although I know it has expired am happy to renew this and do all the rabies tests etc again before taking him over there.

I'm wondering however if someone can advise if there is a quarantine period when I get him there? If so how long would this be and would it be in kennels somewhere?

Also any idea of the expense involved? It cost me £1000 to fly him to Spain and back so I'm worried how much a flight to Texas would be.

Any advice would be much appreciate.

Thanks
We've flown with our dog a lot, although always within the US rather than internationally so I can't help with your documentation questions. But I do have one tip that was given to us for flying our dog.
The night before the trip, put a water bowl full of water in the freezer. Get it out just before the flight and put it in the kennel. This way as the water slowly melts, your dog can hopefully get at least some water to drink.

hth
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