UK Pet Health Care Advice for International Travel with Your Pet

If you are a pet owner looking at either leaving the UK to live in the US, or coming back to the UK after being abroad, you may have some questions about the protocol for traveling with your pet. UK pet health care advice is available for people facing this seemingly difficult task.

Getting Started

If you are traveling with your pet from the UK to the US, you should research to see what the animal requirements are. In the US, some states have different requirements for importing animals, so it’s also important to find out what those are.

UK pet health care advice is available for travelers through the DEFRA Pet Travel Scheme, or PETS for short. There is a help number available in the UK and a website for people traveling to the UK.

Two of the first steps pet owners should take before traveling internationally are to get the pet implanted with a microchip, and to make sure the pet’s health care papers are in order. That way, the pet can be identified easily and the people transporting the animal will have accurate knowledge of its medical history.

The best UK pet health care advice for travelers is to start preparations early, well before it’s time to travel, since some procedures, such as vaccination and testing, need several months to complete.

Health Issues

If you are traveling from the UK to the US, you will need to have your pet (dogs specifically) vaccinated for rabies and treated for heartworms. If you are traveling from the US to the UK, heartworm treatment is not necessary, as the there is no UK pet health care advice on heartworm testing. The success of these treatments will need to be confirmed by a blood test from one to three months after the treatment’s administration.

Shipment of the Animal

Regardless of whether you are going to or from the UK, you need to make arrangements to ship the animal via air travel. You have a few options: you can either book your animal’s passage through the airline, or go through a shipping company.

Shipment of your pet could end up being pricey, so shop around for the best deal. You can also ask if the shipping company or airline has a used crate that you can purchase. You can purchase a kennel or crate yourself, but you must make sure that it is approved by the International Air Transportation Association.

Another bit of UK pet health care advice for travelers is to find out what the airline’s seasonal restrictions are. Many airlines won’t let you ship animals during extreme heat or cold, so make sure the time of your travel is feasible. Some commercial animal shippers will ship in heat, as they have the means to keep the animal cool, but using one of these shippers will double your transport cost.

Last Preparations

Approximately 10 days before traveling, you’ll have to get your pet tested to make sure it is in good health. If you are traveling into the UK, you will need to present this certificate at the airport; if you are going to the US from the UK, some states require it. But the UK pet health care advice is that you should obtain this certification to be safe.

At the airport, you must complete a Live Animal Checklist, and the airline will take it from there. Your pet should now be ready for its travel across the world.

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