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NEW! - Keywords For This Page:   Moving - Pets

Moving With Pets

Feel free to use this tip sheet / checklist as you tackle your own ""do-it-yourself"" organizing projects. If you would like to REPRINT or DISTRIBUTE this information, please click here for reprinting instructions.


  • have your pet examined by your veterinarian
  • collect pet health certificate and vaccination records
  • ask your vet for a reference for a doctor in the new city
  • discuss sedation for your pet during the trip
  • have your pet vaccinated 30 days prior to overseas moves
  • get current rabies tag if you don't already have one


  • name of pet
  • species and gender
  • license number
  • description including color and markings
  • owner's name, telephone number, address
  • veterinarian's name, telephone number, address
  • emergency information
  • vaccination and appointment dates
  • conditions and illnesses
  • treatments and medication


  • air transport of cats and dogs less than 8 weeks old prohibited
  • know that some states have border inspection of all animals
  • find out destination state's pet entry regulations
  • apply for an entry permit if needed
  • check local pet control and licensing ordinances
  • secure a form of identification to your pet's collar


  • have one person in family take responsibility for pets during move
  • book air 4 weeks before domestic moves, 6-8 weeks before international
  • talk to travel agent for suggestions and help planning shipping
  • begin acclimating pet to shipping container several weeks ahead
  • make plans for pick-up and boarding of pet arrives before you
  • take your pets to visit to familiarize them with their new habitat
  • when booking a hotel, make sure the management allows pets


  • birds and rodents may be moved in their own cages
  • remove water from cages to prevent spilling
  • keep bird cage covered to protect from drafts and stress
  • feed small animals regularly and water at rest stops
  • have tropical fish packed by a professional at your fish store
  • other fish may be packed in a half-full plastic bag
  • carry as much of the aquarium water with you as you can
  • tanks smaller than 5 gallons can be moved in-tact in the car
  • generally not necessary to feed fish during the trip


  • feed pet no less than 5-6 hours before move
  • give water and any medications 1-2 hours before leaving
  • exercise pet before confining to shipping container
  • limit feeding of your pets to once a day during the move
  • kennel should allow pet room to stand, lie down, and turn around
  • plan regular stops for water and exercise if possible
  • make sure you or consignee have Air Waybill for picking up pet


  • animals may not travel on moving van
  • only seeing eye dogs may travel on trains or buses
  • pets may travel on airlines if crated in proper container
  • some airlines allow pets in cabin if crate will fit under seat
  • larger pets must be stored in the cargo area as "air freight"
  • pets traveling in car should be properly restrained for safety
  • may ship your pet by air even if you are not traveling with it
  • shipping container must be legibly marked with contact info
  • must provide appropriate health documentation
  • generally must pay for shipping charges in advance


  • veterinarian papers and medical records
  • pet's bed or blankets
  • leash or harness
  • paper towels or rags for cleaning up messes
  • scooper and plastic bags or litter box and litter
  • portable kennel
  • favorite toy and treats
  • brush and comb
  • food, dish, and water (plus can opener if canned food)


  • keep animal confined for a few weeks until settled in
  • put dish, litter box, and other supplies in familiar locations
  • allow your pet to explore home to get comfortable
  • take pet to visit new veterinarian to get acquainted


Copyright Ramona Creel, all rights reserved-- you are welcome to reprint any article, but you MUST include this resource box.

Ramona Creel is a modern Renaissance woman and guru of simplicity -- traveling the country as a full-time RVer, sharing her story of radically downsizing, and inspiring others to regain control of their own lives. As a Professional Organizer and Accountability Coach, Ramona will help you create the time and space to focus on your true priorities -- clearing away the clutter other obstacles and standing in the way of that life you've always wanted to be living. As a Professional Photographer, Ramona captures powerful images of places and people as she travels. And as a travel writer, social commentator, and blogger, she shares her experiences and insights about the world as we know it. You can see all these sides of Ramona -- read her articles, browse through her photographs, and even hire her to help get your life in order -- at www.RamonaCreel.com. And be sure to follow her on Twitter and on Facebook.

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