International Travel Checklist
Check the flight options you have for your particular dates. After you have narrowed down a few choices, write down the possible Airlines.
Research the pet/dog restrictions for each of the airlines (yes, they are much different and Airlines like British Airways do not allow dogs at all)
Be very cautious with share codes and "operated by". Whoever is operated by, they have a final say.
For example, you have found flight by British Airways (which normally does not allow dogs), but the flight is operated by IBERIA - Iberia has the final say, and as long as the share code is Iberia code, you are allowed to fly with dogs
Call the airline customer service and get a verbal and written confirmation (you might need to present it at the time of check-in) I can't stress that enough! Print your confirmation!
Finally book your flight. Make sure you complete all the required documentation for the airline itself to be able to add your pet to the booking
~and now the fun begins~
if you are traveling FROM USA to another country:
1. Check Arrival and Departure country agriculture laws:
2. Read upon the laws of arrival country and download their specific Health Certificate
* note, majority of EU countries have their own Health Certificate that you can obtain on USDA APHIS site, but if
there isn't one, there is a general EU Health Certificate you can use.
~ if you have layovers, you need to select the EU certificate in the language of the country where you declare customs. For example, if you travel from SF to Madrid, with a layover in Germany, you will be most likely declaring the customs in Spain, as it is your exiting country. Therefore you need EU Health Certificate for Spain. Unfortunately, you cannot get two, for both countries (USDA APHIS will not endorse two certificates - believe me, I tried )
3. Get your pet a passport
~ Yes, PET PASSPORT exists :)
4. Have your pet inserted ISO compliant microchip
~ if it is not ISO compliant, you will need to carry your own microchip reader
5. Rabies and Vaccine Record/ Certificate AND Titer Test
~ make sure your dog is up to date on all vaccination
~ if your puppy is more than 16 weeks old, they need to have a Rabies certificate & depending on the country, they need to wait up to 21 days after their first shot to be able to enter
~ Review the specific requirements carefully, as some countries require Titer Test to be preformed several months prior to arrival in destination country!
6. Spay/Neuter Certificate if applicable (required by some airlines)
7. Find an USDA Accredited Veterinarian near you
~ it is VERY important that you find an accredited veterinarian. Only they will be able to complete the Health Certificate, and it will then need to be endorsed by USDA APHIS
~ to confirm whether your vet is USDA accredited, you can email USDA APHIS official.
To find the official serving your area:
8. Schedule a vet visit with USDA Accredited vet
~ no longer than 10 days prior to departure date (keep in mind if you are arriving the "next day" to EU country- that could count as 11th day! If there are any flight delays, that could make it the 11th day as well! so be careful!
~ make sure they sign with the same name as it appears in their license (in case they changed last name)
9. Make an appointment with USDA APHIS office
~ find a nearest office and schedule an appointment
~ pay processing fee
~ DO NOT bring your dog to the appointment
10. Keep all documents in a folder and present at the time of CHECK-IN as well as in the arriving country (where you declare customs)
~ Remember you need to DECLARE customs. The official will stamp your paperwork. If you are traveling/driving to other countries, you might need to present the paperwork of the country you entered.
~ If possible, carry any training certificates with you stating your dog is obedient.
Have a fun and safe flight!
As always, do not hesitate to reach out to us on Instagram or if you have any questions!