Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Moving with Pets to Hawaii

Without a doubt, moving to Hawaii is quite the process. That process becomes ever more complicated when you involve animals. The state of Hawaii is rabies-free, and they intend to keep it that way. For this reason all animals must be quarantined before they are allowed to live with you on the island. You have an option to have your pets pre-quarantined prior to their arrival in the islands. This will involve blood tests and the microchipping of your pet at least 120 days prior to your arrival in Hawaii. For all the details visit the Hawaii Dept. of Agriculture pages about the whole process.

Because of the quarantine, pets can not be in the cabin with you on your flight to Hawaii. (An exception is made for assistance animals. Be assured that that will require even more paperwork.)

In addition to the quarantine, getting your pets to Hawaii on the airlines can also be a bit of an experience. Do make sure to make a reservation for your pet when you book your own airfare. Most airlines have limits to the number of animals they will carry (either in the cabin or checked) and you do not want to get to the airport and not have a spot on the plane for your pet. Our cats' reservations are about $100-$150 each, and we will pay that fee when we get to the airport. Be sure to read all the regulations on the airline's website, too - there might be rules that you wouldn't think about, especially regarding the size and type of carrier required. Also - do note that most (perhaps all) airlines will not accept pets for transport as checked cargo when ground temperatures are less than 45 degrees Fahrenheit. For us, this means that our cats must travel in the cabin with us from Chicago to Los Angles, and then from LA to Honolulu they are checked. And yes, this will involve two different types of carriers.

For good general information on moving with pets (and the supplies to do so) visit these sites:
The Humane Society
How to Move With Your Pet
Establish a Routine for your Pets

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