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Joined: Tue Mar 17, 2015 11:16 am

Maltese Traveling by Air

Postby JFShea » Fri Mar 27, 2015 3:32 pm

Hi Folks,

First, it's great to be back to the forum after nearly a decade absence. My two puppies are now 11 years old (in May), and I added a younger brother (same parents, later litter) who will be 10 in September.

Like all of you, my Maltese are my family. Well, I recently received a job offer literally on the other side of the world, in a rather rustic location. The job offer comes with relocation for my dogs, by air; I am awaiting details on the specifics. However, I wanted to see if any of you had any knowledge of relocating your animals internationally. The thought of them traveling in cargo on a commercial flight, one that would involve multiple legs and probably 20-30 hours in flight, is very troubling to me. We've all heard horror stories about dogs arriving dead ...

I'm in a bind because it's very difficult for several reasons for me to turn down this opportunity. As I said, I haven't discussed the specifics but my employers seem to be comfortable with whatever they will propose and apparently have done this on multiple occasions in the past, perhaps through a specialty animal air cargo company.

Any guidance, ideas or knowledge you could impart would be much appreciated! Thx.

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Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2010 12:41 pm

Re: Maltese Traveling by Air

Postby merryblueeyes » Mon Mar 30, 2015 10:00 pm

I would never put a dog in cargo. It is cold, dark, terribly noisy and many, many dogs do die in process.
I know this for a fact because my cousin used to work for the now defunct, TWA airlines. He saw many dogs taken off dead and many more who had to be rushed to veterinary emergencies. One poor dog had ripped out all his front paw nails trying to dig is way out of his metal wire crate. He, himself, would never transport his own dog. When he retired and moved to Hawaii, he had the dog transported by ship though he could have had him sent by plane for free.
If you take this job find some other way to transport them or you will be taking a very great chance of them dying.

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Joined: Tue May 26, 2015 8:28 pm

Re: Maltese Traveling by Air

Postby Patsy » Wed May 27, 2015 8:33 pm

First of all, congratulations on your new job!
I totally understand what you are going thru. I experienced that myself when we moved from
Canada to Asia. 18 hours flight, what would our little one do? what would happen to her? should she come? Let me tell you, Giverny has
become an experienced traveler!

First thing we did was to find an airline with less stops, a direct flight from Toronto. It is much easier for you and for your little one.
She goes to the vet three days before she travels to get her documents ready. A Vaccine and a Health Certificate is what is required.
I always make 3 copies of them: one for Customs, one for her visit to the Vet when she has to leave again, one for my records.

Its very funny with dogs, they do know when you are traveling and don't ask me how but I am sure she can tell when she is coming along.
Her crate I bring out a couple of days before. Its really funny she goes in and leaves as soon she can. I start getting it ready two
days before we leave. I don't want to forget anything, mostly the toys as she will be playing with them around the house and I have to
chase them.

Inside her crate I'd say I fix it by layers:
-first a big plastic bag for the bottom.
-Diaper covering the whole floor.
-Diaper in half at the back.
-pillow at the back with her blanket.
-Water bottle
-Water dish in case it drips
-Food dish with food
-Her favourite toys (her ducky, she never leaves home without it, one reindeer antler bone and another toy)

Once she sees her crate is ready she goes to check it out. It is really funny, but she goes inside, moves around and comes out.

During the day we are traveling we try to get her to do her usual walks and play with her a lot. I think it will help her to relax a bit.
My vet suggested Children Gravel, which I give her before we head to the airport.

Once at the airport crate needs to be inspected. After that you can place the water bottle.

As the trip takes 18 hours she has to travel in a special section airplanes have where they transport live animals.
We have to pay for her fare and its based on her weight. You will need to sign documents in which you agree that they are not
responsible if anything happens to your dog.

Once you handled your dog they will take care of her. From my experience I can tell you, you get better treatment traveling with
dogs than with children. There are very careful of checking them during the flight. I can say this as the last flight Giverny came
with an extra bottle of water, which they had provided. We always stop at Vancouver and in this particular flight the stop took a bit
longer than expected. She will sometimes be out before the rest of the luggage. And what I receive
is an excited little dog happy to see me.

As you can imagine, there is a jet lag due to the 12 hours zone time difference. She usually will wake up in the middle of the night
to go to the bathroom the first 2 nights and then she is totally herself again. Going back to Canada I'd say 1 day of jet lag for her.
And when she goes back she adjusts so well!

Some years ago we had Picasso and he'd fly with us too. Once he had to stay in Toronto as it was too cold from him to fly and
Airline made sure he came on next morning flight. Airlines sometimes made sure I was holding him and looking after him while they
fetch my luggage, I'm telling you, they want our doggies happy too.

I have had very good experiences with airlines. They have shown me that they really and truly care for the dogs and I understand
that being confined in a little crate for 18 hours because I want to have my dog with me doesn't make any sense. Instead, she travels
in a big crate very comfy if I may say and explores the world.

Only thing I do, once I am on the plane I tell stewardess to make sure air con is on and temperature adjusted as our doggy is traveling

Good luck in this new adventure!

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