Go Premium
Facebook Twitter Google Plus

Travelling With Pets

May 4, 2016

Comments

Share Post

What’s this?! An informative TL;DR! It’s been a while since we did one of these. We’ve been shying away from TL;DRs until we get a better grasp of where we’re living, and also until we get a few stories under our belts that can be somewhat helpful. And for once, we have one: it’s on travelling with pets! We did it with Spudgy and Meemers, and it was a lot more difficult to get into Japan than it was to bring Spudgy to and from Canada. So, come, learn from our experiences (and mistakes?) and hopefully your journey with your pets will be a lot smoother than ours.

One major difference we didn’t mention in this video: we traveled with Spudgy in the cabin, while other times he flew in the cargo underneath. We didn’t want him going in cargo this time. He’s too old, too easily scared. His heart is half dead and only staying pumping through viagra. He actually takes viagra every day. He’s been on it for two years and, according to the vet, his heart condition should have worsened a lot in those two years, but he’s actually doing a lot better than expected. Woohoo! But he’s also been air humping a lot. So that’s awkward. But better he air hump than die! The point is, we want things to go smoothly with Spudgy, and going in cargo would be immensely stressful for him, so we wanted him in the cabin with us. And it worked! Kinda, except for the heartbreaking whimpering.

The carrier that we got is pretty awesome. When you walk around with it fully zipped up, it looks like a regular rectangular carrier. We got this one, though, for the flight, because the side of it unzips and effectively doubles the space for Spudgy to sleep in. It’s great! It’s mesh so he could breathe more. We can unzip the top, too, for easy access to pet him. We used to just use a hard carrier, and the only way to get to him was through the front metal door, but this soft one here has so many more options so we can be even more coddling and overprotective. Yay! You can get it here if you plan on travelling with your pets. It’s great!

Another thing we didn’t mention: we had a different experience with our animals in Korea and Canada. We told you in the video how they wanted us to take Spudgy and Meemers out of their carriers; in Canada, though, I remember when we asked if we could take Spudgy out of his carrier, because he was hot and wanted water, they told us under no circumstances to do so, because the sniffer dogs at the airport might lose their shit and attack. They were very firm and scary about it. In Korea it wasn’t an issue. I didn’t actually see any sniffer dogs in Korea, on that note. And I don’t know what sniffer dogs are properly called. I think they’re called Sniffters.

If you’d like more information, you can click here to find out about travelling with pets to Japan. It’s actually quite useful and, in fact, explained why we had to wait 180 days after Spudgy and Meemers passed the test. Supposedly you have to wait 180 days because “Antibody levels are measured in order to confirm whether or not the animal has developed immunity to rabies. The reason for the wait is to make sure that the animal has not contracted rabies prior to developing immunity to it as a result of immunization. 180 days corresponds to the incubation period for the disease.” Interesting. There is science to it! Woohoo!

Oh, and one thing we forgot to mention: the price. It cost us $800 per animal. $1600 total. Got damn these animals of ours are so expensive! That’s not counting the $500 boner cocktail we give our dog as well. But it was $1600 for them, and that’s just for the tests. Then we paid an extra $200 per animal to get them on the flight as well. Why airplanes charge you to bring your animals with you on the plane, I don’t get. It’s not like the flight attendants are giving them in-flight service, or they’re taking an extra seat.

Damn! Another thing I forgot to mention: we’re actually not done all of the paperwork yet: we still have to bring in Spudgy’s papers to our local city hall office within 30 days of him arriving in Japan. It’s the law. It’s stamped on the papers saying in big blue text that it’s the law. So, we’ll do that next week, once Golden Week is wrapped up here and things are settled a bit more.

So that’s it for our story! If you’ve had any experience of travelling with pets, we’d love to hear how it’s the same or different than our experiences!

Comments

30

Share Post

TL;DR

HIDE COMMENTS

Travelling With Pets

30 COMMENTS

Leave a Reply

  1. Hi, I was wondering if you could answer a question for me. I’m planning on teaching English in Asia and can’t stand the thought of leaving my Boogie Baby at home in America with my mom. I know you’ve lived in Korea and Japan, was is difficult to find a cat-friendly apartment in those countries? Was in insanely expensive? And what was the vet care like? Boogie tends to get UTIs, especially after being stressed out, which traveling would definitely make him. Any information would be a HUGE help!

    5 months ago
  2. Thank you so much for this post! You and your amazing pets rock.
    I am actually about to travel with my little cat to Korea now (a 10 hour flight… not including all the surrounding time — on the way to the airport, in the airport, from the airport…) and was wondering what kind of “welcome” will await us at the Seoul airport. Could you elaborate on that perhaps…? I’m so nervous (also about the flight, of course) and any piece of info from the experienced is Prozac to my delicate nerves… Thanks in advance!

    6 months ago
  3. THank youuuu for this!!!! I’m planning to eventually transfer over to my company’s Tokyo office and have been looking into this as I am heavily debating bringing my Pipsqueak with me or to leave her with my mom.

    9 months ago
  4. Ahhhhhhhhhhh I’m late to comment!!!! Again!!!!! LOLOL your dogs is soooooooooooooooo cute?!! Cat is 2. Nice choice on buying that one!!!! Lol I’m glad you could bring them to Japan! Omg do the Japanese HATE YOUR COLORFUL DOG?!?! I hear they’re not friendly and hate everything not normal lol. Omg do they hate your tattoos tooooo????

    9 months ago
  5. Completely off topic, but Martina I am very curious about your watch band! Did you decorate your own or is that purchasable?

    9 months ago
  6. Hey guys! I am actually going through this whole process right now, since I am moving to Japan this summer. My question for you is a little confusing but maybe you can answer it. When you were planning your flight to pick them up in Korea and bring them back to Japan, were you able to plan it so they arrived in Japan right after their quarantine period ended, or did the 40-day notice to Japan have to happen AFTER the full 180-day quarantine had passed? I guess I’m asking if the 40-day notice can overlap with the quarantine period. Thanks in advance!

    9 months ago
  7. I briefly mentioned this in my YouTube comment but now I’m actively wondering: What will the process be to take them out and back into Japan for shorter trips such as when you guys go back to Canada? I can’t imagine you have to wait that 180 days again but I also can’t imagine they will just assume they didn’t get rabies in Canada.

    If it turns out to be a huge process would you guys travel to Canada without them and have neighbors pet sit?

    Anywho! That’s really all future stuff and for right now it’s great that they are there and with you and happy and I just love seeing the family back together!

    9 months ago
  8. I just adopted a baby cat and I’m going to travel to Rio de Janeiro next month and I was even thinking about taking the baby with me, because he’s so small and careless. But traveling inside Brazil with animals by plan is very very expensive too! :(
    Glad you guys are with them now! I miss them on the videos :)

    9 months ago
  9. Hi guys, I wonder if u can tell me what your airline was? I want to bring my baby from US to Vietnam but my dog is a mix with a short nosed breed and lots of airlines don’t allow me to fly with him:(

    9 months ago
  10. Thanks for sharing your experience of travelling with your pets to Japan. It is helpful to understand the process you went through and some of the challenges. It must be great to finally have them with you! I have a pet chicken but sadly I don’t think she would be allowed to fly with me!
    I hope you are having a lovely time living in Japan.

    9 months ago
  11. Pawsome. Purr-ity sure I can now organise a quick trip to Japan to see you Meemers Oppa. The human has been using all these quarantine excuses (paperwork, shots, being twapped like a wascally wabbit in a cage furrever, blah blah) to keep us apart. But now, I have all the infurrmation I’ll just set to it then. Keep a Scottish Fold ear out for my meow under your window – should be there about 2020!

    9 months ago
  12. Hi, Simon & Martina! Thanks for the information pets are such an important part of our lives and when moving is very important to have them with us. I wanted to give you a little bit of information about traveling through the US because I noticed that you guys mentioned how strict or expensive is to bring pets on board a plane. Well its actually the FAA regulations the one who is pretty strict and the airline complies due security to reasons. In a happy note the airline I work for even though regular pets pay to be in the cabin with their families (100 per pet), emotional support animals are free to travel (need the doctors official note) and you may bring your well mannered pet with you onboard with no pet carrier! Thats a plus for so many people. There is no limit for amount of pets a person can have as emotional support and its very important to the company that each customer feels comfortable traveling, specially if they are indeed moving with family and pets. Same thing goes for trained service animals, they are allowed free of charge in any flight. Just remember than when traveling with pets always bring a certificate from the vet stating that the pet has all their vaccines up to date. I know you guys travel a lot and this info might come handy when traveling to US.

    Hugs and Kisses!
    (For you guys and for sweet Spudy and fluffy Meemers)

    – Jossie

    9 months ago
  13. do you know if there are as many problems with moving a pet from Japan? I wanted to bring a hedgehog with me back to my country, but I guess it would be too much stress for both of us if I got one

    9 months ago
  14. I signed up on here just to let you know how happy I was to see this video and post ;w; I’m not traveling to Japan but I have been stressed for MONTHS because I am moving with my two cats across country. I have them in the cabin with me and all that is set but I have been stressing so much because of that security check issue with cats coming out of the carrier. I was surprised to hear you even had to do it there! I have harnesses all set for them both but omgosh I’m so happy to know you were able to get Meemers through without any escapes, it’s been my worst fear so far for my kitties. I felt like this blog post was perfect timing because watching you two always makes my stress go away and hearing your travel adventures with your two babbiez gave me a bit more positive outlook on stuff so thank you! <3

    9 months ago
  15. I’ve been waiting for this post!!! My husband and I are hoping to find jobs in Japan in the next 5 years and I’ve been trying to convince him that it’s possible to bring our 2 kitties! This is the only thing holding us back as we could never live without our babies. This information helps a lot! I was wondering though, if the pets are kept up to date on their rabies shots and there is proof, do we still have to wait the 180 day waiting period?

    9 months ago
    • When you receive a vaccination of any type it actually takes several months for you to become immune. First immune cells need to note the exposure, then special cells that work as interactive sign posts are created and spread through the body. If you are exposed again these marker cells trigger a defensive response from other immune cells. Since not all vaccinations work or work to the same degree based on a particular individual’s immune system and immune health, a blood test called a titer is drawn to check for a substantial amount of these marker cells in the blood. If you have enough floating around, you are considered immune. If not, then you will need a booster shot to trigger a further immune response to exposure and complete the chain. For example, in humans it takes something like 6 months for the hepatitis vaccine to reach high enough numbers. I’m sure this knowledge is part of Japan’s rabies free entry protocol. Incidentally, this need for substantial numbers of marker cells in the blood, is part of why older people develop shingles after having experienced chicken pox as children.

      9 months ago
  16. When I was flying within the US around Christmas time, they made people remove their animals from the carrier as well (I saw kittens and dogs out), so the carrier could be scanned separately. I think procedure on that might be the same no matter where you go. The people I saw had their cats in harnesses on leashes to keep them with them and that seemed to be okay (with both the cats and security).

    9 months ago
  17. When we moved to Japan with our two dogs from the US, they had to complete a quarantine of 180 days. Is that also the reason why Spudgy and Meemers had to stay behind in Korea?

    We are moving back to the US and there’s a heat embargo during the summer (and even more restrictions on snub-nosed pets) for flying. We have huskies and hope we can fly on time.

    9 months ago
    • Yes, they actually could have completed their quarantine in Japan, but it would be at the airport quarantine. I thought they would be happier staying with friends in Korea, especially since Spudgy has a heart problem. Yeah we had to change our flying plans before too because Spudgy couldn’t come with us to Canada.

      9 months ago
  18. TMI question: Did either pet need to wee or poop during the trip? How did you handle that? Thanks!

    9 months ago
    • Even when we flew Spudgy to Canada on a 10 hour flight he was okay. We line their carriers with pee pads JUST in case of emergency. Also, I stop feeding them dry food a day or two before traveling since I find Spudgy has a daily poop schedule with dry food, but when I only feed him all wet he poops every second day. Haha such a mom comment to make…observation on my dogs’ poop schedule. Also, when they arrive at the airport, I find most places you can sneak a pee and short walk in at the farthest ends of the airport where the least amount of people are hanging out. Some airport have little gardens, but Incheon is all cement so Spudgy had to make due peeing on poles awkwardly. Otherwise, we’ve never had an accident, both animals hold their little bladders really well. :D

      9 months ago
  19. I cried so hard when you guise described Spudgy’s terror in the closet T_T!!! And poor Meemers having to be wanded! It’s a good thing he didn’t claw Mom to shreds.
    I’m so glad that the ordeal wasn’t worse…. And that you’re all together again. The viagra surprised me. He wasn’t on it way back when he was showing off his lipstick in the old “Meet Your Kimchi Crew” vid was he? ^_^
    Viva La Spudgy & if you put more things for me to buy in the EYK Store, I’ll be happy to help support his prescription costs ^_^.

    9 months ago
  20. Wow, that sounds utterly exhausting! I think that I need a nap!

    9 months ago
  21. Simon and Martina,
    Thank you so much for this informative video :D I’m so glad you guys had a fairly un-eventful journey to Japan with Spudgy and Meemers! <3

    I wanted to add a couple notes for those people who are considering traveling with their pets (side note: US people, you do need a rabies certificate and a domestic health certificate to fly your pets just within the US).
    * Do what Simon and Martina said – start super duper early! Some countries can take about a year to prep an animal for admittance.
    * Contact your veterinarian office – a lot of places do not do international health certificates because of all the detail and legality of it, so make sure you find a place to do all the prep and the certificate at. A lot of times the final health certificate has to be issued within 10 days of flying and THEN notarized by the federal government. It's a lot of work.
    * Make sure your airline will accept your animal and there is room on the flight before buying the ticket.
    * For animals going in cargo (typically anything over 20 lbs), the crate must be a hard plastic with a metal door AND it must have air vents on ALL 4 sides (this is something people miss a lot and they won't let you on the flight if the crate does not meet standards)
    * Do not give an animal a sedative before travel – it lowers their blood pressure, heart rate, and respiration rate, which can be fatal when combined with the air pressure changes and stress. Also, most airlines have a list of breeds of dogs who they refuse to fly due to health risks (pugs, french bulldogs, boston terriers, etc)

    This video was great, guise! Thank you! <3

    9 months ago
  22. who did you fly with ?

    9 months ago
  23. They really should warn you beforehand that you have to remove the animals from the crates when you go through security! I was lucky I cat my cat on a leash (I was afraid she would somehow open the crate so I put her on a leash tied to the inside of the crate) and that the security person was SUCH a cat person, but I would have been very freaked out if she was completely loose during that time.

    9 months ago
  24. I bet Sniffters are still called K-9s. :P

    9 months ago
  25. I’m so glad you guys did this. I often wondered about country traveling with pets and especially moving then to a different country. Oh spudgy! Viagra huh buddy? :) what ever keeps that precious heart pumping and makes you full of life :) Welcome back TL;DR. Youve been missed. ❤️

    9 months ago
  26. I now have proof to give my mom, yes I am 24 and still live with her, on why it took so long for spudgy and meemersworth to go to Japan. Simon don’t beat up Sailor Martina or she’ll call her fellow sailor scouts to get you lol

    9 months ago
    • Aww, so glad everyone is together again! I loved the Spudgy dancing at the end. Flashbacks to all his great kmm dances <3

      9 months ago