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Old 08.09.2015, 18:55
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Cat travel CH to USA

Hi EF's!


Quick question, can anyone direct me to a thread that explains the permits and certifications needed to travel with a cat from Switzerland to the USA. For example, flying with a passenger on an airline not shipping them with an independent company. I have been reading conflicting information online. Some websites say you need almost nothing and others have a long list.


tia
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Old 09.09.2015, 05:37
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Re: Cat travel CH to USA

Go to your Vet and ask for all the docs . there is quite a few. You need to have your animal checked by the vet no more than 10 days before departure. You also need to check with your airline that they accept pets on that flight. Kennel etc needs to be right dimensions etc etc

Thats about it. We did it with our dog (in cabin) to the USA. On the way way back the papers needed to be checked by the USDA.

Noone has EVER checked any docs (broght back 2 dogs from the USA and 1x to the USA , but better safe than sorry I guess
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Old 16.03.2020, 21:05
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Re: Cat travel CH to USA

I checked this post before I flew my 2 cats to Orlando and back this winter, so I'll answer now that I have time.

I got an attestation from my Veterinaire stating that the cats are healthy and fully vaccinated. I spoke with the Vaud cantonal veterinaire in Gland, he can provide an official certificate of health. He thought that the US did not need more than the passport and chip.

Most important is the chip and passport.

On arrival in Florida, no agents approached me so I asked on, he said that cats are uncontrolled. Dogs need full papers, passports, etc.

To return to Switzerland, I called the Swiss Federal Veterinary office to see if the cats needed a healthy animal note from a Vet. He said they did not, all they need is the passport and matching chip.

On arrival, the Zurich customs checked the rabies stamps and waved me through.

In both directions, Edelweiss copied their passports and checked that their breed is allowed.

Note that sedatives are no longer allowed. You can give them different relaxing tablets.
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Old 22.04.2020, 03:43
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Re: Cat travel CH to USA

Hi Anthony, We are just exploring the option of moving back to Switzerland as well via the States sometime later this year and I was wondering if you wouldnt mind sharing a ball park figure on how much it cost you to travel with your dog? i've seen insane quotes for pet relocation services in the $3000 mark and that just seems ridiculous, so I'm looking at just doing it all ouselves like what you did, but am wondering how much that would cost instead.

We have a maltese cross that we would need to travel with us.

Thanks for letting me know :-)
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Old 22.04.2020, 08:49
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Re: Cat travel CH to USA

RachVDG, is your dog small enough to travel with you in cabin?

Generally that is under 8KG, including travel crate - so somewhere around 6.5 kg. Be aware that the crate must also fit under the seat, so size of the dog matters as well.

If your dog is under the weight limit but tall-ish you need to confirm with the airline whether or not he would fit in the class/seat you intend to travel.

(For instance, my tiddly little Robin is within the weight limit, but he is leggy so his crate would only fit under the one the single bulkhead seat in business class. His crate will not fit in economy at all, or even in first class where, according to the crew when I asked a while ago, he'd have to go in a closet for take off and landing and turbulence, which is not exactly safe. So unless I can book that one specific seat on Swiss, he can't fly. Or, he could fly cargo... but that would be too dangerous for him, I would never consider it.)

If your dog can fly in the cabin the price is fairly reasonable and the process is pretty simple.

If you have to go cargo, prices are bit higher.

DIY, either in cabin or cargo probably think hundreds rather than thousands, but call the airline for updated prices and restrictions.

But even if it were safe for Robin to fly cargo I would still use an agent, for my own peace of mind. After an almost-tragedy I would never consider anything else, expense be damned - but that's just my personal stance. YMMV.
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Old 23.04.2020, 06:02
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Re: Cat travel CH to USA

Hi Meloncollie

Thanks for the info! I will have to weigh and measure here - last I checked she was about 6.5kg but I think she has gained a bit of weight Will have to see how big the crate would have to be to fit her...But that is good to know that if you dont take her in the cabin they just put them in cargo is that correct? So does that mean they just go with normal cargo? Isn't that dangerous - ie isn't there a specific pet area that they have to put them in that is pressurized or something for safety? Whether or not they are put in the plane via a pet relocation service or just from the airline itself? Just need to clarify that thanks
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Old 23.04.2020, 10:33
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Re: Cat travel CH to USA

Generally you have to book cargo ahead of time, as the pet space is limited. Yes, there is a space reserved for animals, but never forget it's still cargo. There is an element of risk.

Has your dog flown long haul before? If you need tips on 'flight training' just ask.

Honestly I do not know what would happen if you planned on carrying your pet in the cabin and she was refused at check-in due to size. I would guess - but this is only my own guess, based on nothing - that if there were still space available in cargo they would allow your dog to travel that way on your flight, assuming the crate met cargo specifications. (Many people planning on traveling in cabin use a soft sided crate, which absolutely would not be allowed in the cargo hold.)

However, there might not be available space, in which case you'd be left scrambling for a solution at the airport. Which might not end well.

If you know what airline you will fly contact them now - most have a group responsible for animal transportation. Find out specific requirement,s get allowable crate dimensions, ask about booking procedures. And get the response in writing!

FYI, there might be a limit of the number of pets allowed in cabin, so you should make sure you fully understand booking procedures, especially timing.

Hope all goes well with the family travel and settling into your next chapter.



ETA:

Just to be clear: Animal travel needs to be booked ahead of time, both cargo and in-cabin.

To give you an idea of what is involved, take a peek at the Swiss website's pages on pet travel:
https://www.swiss.com/ch/EN/prepare/...g-with-animals
https://www.swiss.com/ch/en/customer...als-travelling

Obviously each airline will have it's own requirements, I just linked the Swiss pages because they are a good starter to get you thinking about issues that might arise with your dog's travel.

Last edited by meloncollie; 23.04.2020 at 15:05.
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