Categories | Pet Transport


Whether it is over short or long distances, at some stage, your pet will need to be transported from A to B and this should be done in the safest, least stressful way to your animal. You have two major options – to do it yourself or to have it done for you. Here’s what you need to know.

Why is Pet Transport Necessary?

Pet transportation is necessary for several different reasons.  One of the most common is when you are moving homes, whether that is just down the street, interstate or even overseas.  In this case, you may not be able to take your pet with you yourself, and this is where specialist pet transportation services are able to help as they are trained and experienced in moving your pets with the minimum amount of stress to them. Other reasons for pet transportation include visiting the vet, taking your pet to a grooming service, visiting friends or family with your pet, boarding your pet while you are travelling, or taking your pet to a recreational area such as a pet friendly park or beach.

Types of Pet Carriers and How to Choose

There are several different options for pet carriers depending on the type of pet that you have and the distance that you need to travel. They are also a necessity if you are using a pet transportation service.  Some of the most common are as following:

  • Rigid Carriers -- rigid carriers are those that have a hard floor, sides, and roof and they are made from either rigid plastic or wood. Many rigid carriers are suitable for airline travel as they meet the strict requirements for travelling animals.  Rigid carriers have excellent ventilation, are available in a range of sizes, and are easy to get your pet in and out of.
  • Soft Carriers -- if you only need to transport your pet over short distances, then one of the many soft carriers on the market are ideal. Soft carriers can mimic handbags (so you wouldn’t even be able to see the pet if you weren’t looking), sportsbags, and even backpacks.  Look for a soft carrier that is well sewn and sturdily constructed and that has a solid base for your pet to stand on, so that they feel secure.
  • Horse Floats -- these are the best way to transport your horse over both long and short distances.  Look for a horse float that is capable of supporting the weight of your horse as well as its own weight. If you need to transport two horses at once, you can get tandem floats.
  • Cages -- cages are the best way to transport birds and other small pets such as mice, rats, rabbits, hamsters and so on.  Ensure that the cage has a securely closing door, and that at the base is secure and sturdy.  When travelling with water, make sure that you use a dropper style bottle so that water does not go everywhere.

When you are choosing a form of pet transport, ensure that the carrier or cage is large enough for your pet. You want your pet to have enough room to move around a little, that is, be able to stand up and turn around. However, you don’t want it to be too big as this can actually cause injury to your pet.  Think about how you plan to use the carrier as well.  If you plan to use it often, for airline travel or for long distances, it is worth paying the extra money for something really good quality. However, it is just for short trips to the vet, you can get away with a more budget option.

Choosing Pet Transportation Services

A pet transportation service is a service that specialises in transporting your pet to wherever it needs to go.  These services are most commonly used when you are moving home but they are also very helpful if you wish to obtain a new pet from a breeder or an animal shelter that is not located close enough so that you can pick it up yourself.  Pet transportation services can be used to move your pets to a new location a couple of hours away but they can also move your pets interstate or even overseas as necessary.  These companies are highly experienced and trained in working with all types of pets and so they minimise stress to your pet wherever possible. They also help to minimise stress for you as the owner.

Pet transportation services can do the following things as part of the services that they provide:

  • Carrying out vet checks so as to make sure that your pet is fit for travel
  • Ensuring that your pet has all necessary vaccinations and that vaccination certificates are provided
  • Booking the best flights for your pet so that they do not spend any more time that necessary away from their owner
  • Providing boarding services for your pet for the required period of time (if you are not arriving in the new area on the same flight as your pet)
  • Dealing with quarantine regulations if your pet is entering or leaving the country
  • Recommending the best carrier for travel and selling or hiring you one if necessary
  • Pickup and delivery services
  • Regular checks of your pet to ensure that they are safe and happy and to let them out for toilet breaks, to stretch their legs and so on

If you need to use a pet transportation service, the most important thing is that you are comfortable with them as a company.  You need to be able to trust them with your beloved pets and have faith that they will treat your pet with as much love and respect as if they were their own.  Ideally, they should be willing to meet with you and your pet first, before any contract is entered into.  They should have excellent communication and be easily reachable, just in case you have any questions throughout the pet transportation process.  You should ask them what their costs are and what is included in that cost, for example, flights, provision of a carrier, picking up and delivering your pets and so on.  A good company will talk you through the transportation process and so there should not be any hidden costs or charges.

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