1. Always seek the advice of a veterinarian before flying with your pet and check the types of vaccination shots required for the country you are travelling to. If you are moving permanently overseas, itís best to contact a pet transport company who can advise you of all the procedures necessary for your pet to travel.
2. Always make sure you have a record of your petís vaccination history - this will be required when organizing travel and checking your pet in with the airline.
3. Dogs and cats must be at least eight weeks old and must have been weaned for at least five days before they can travel.
4. Pets are easily stressed, especially when they notice the slightest change in their environment. Itís important to create an atmosphere that smells familiar to them so include some of their toys and blankets in their travel container. You can also leave an old t-shirt with your scent in the container to reassure them that youíre close by.
5. Before flying, familiarize your pet with the container it will be travelling in. Check they can stand up and lie down comfortably in the container and ensure the door shuts securely.
6. Make sure your pet drinks plenty of fresh water and gets some exercise before travelling. Leading up to the flight, keep food to a minimum and make sure they donít eat solid food in the six hours prior to take off.
7. Animals have to be at the airport at least one hour prior to departure as there are several forms that need to be filled out before they can fly. Itís also advisable to allow more time when checking in with a pet.
8. It is essential to make sure your pet is wearing a collar when travelling which has their name as well as your name and address on it. That way, if for some reason your pet escapes, it can be returned to its container.
9. Itís a good idea to ensure your pet arrives at its destination during the day to give them plenty of time to sniff around and become familiar with their new surroundings. If you can, select flights that will arrive during daylight hours.
10. Once you arrive at your destination make sure you spend some quality time with your pet and give it special attention so that it feels safe in its new surroundings.