May 4, 2016
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!