Moving with reptiles

Reptiles can be transported via car or airline. In fact, breeders ship most reptiles by United Parcel Post to stores and consumers. You can do the same, but you may balk now that you’ve established a connection with your pet reptile.

Make sure to have it checked out by a veterinarian and get a signed health certificate no more than 10 days before traveling. Some states restrict the importation of pets, especially reptiles and amphibians, so it is important to know the rules of the state and city to which you are moving.

You could also contact reptile and amphibian enthusiasts at local herpetological clubs. These can also be a great source to finding a good vet for your type of pet.

Although moving can be hectic, try to keep your pets routine the same as usual. Stress is hard on any pet, but reptiles are especially susceptible to health issues. Let your pet spend time in the carrier to get used to it before the move. Also, make sure your pet is in a safe location before the moving company arrives.

Keeping your reptile or amphibian at a comfortable temperature will be the biggest challenge when traveling, whether by airline or car. Make sure to take precautions and add cooling or heating elements depending on the time of year and temperatures, especially if transporting by plane.

Remember, your pet will be stressed and may act differently, so be extra cautious if you need to remove the pet from its carrier.

Traveling by air

Airlines will take most reptiles but only as cargo. This will be more expensive than shipping but it might be less stressful for your pet. Make sure to check with the airline on which you want to travel because they all have varying rules and regulations.

If going by cargo, make sure that you use an airline approved carrier for your type of pet. For larger reptiles, such as iguanas and larger snakes, a cat or dog carrier may be sufficient. Make sure the carrier is large enough so your pet can move around but not too large as the animal could injure itself. Again, the airline can be a great resource regarding a carrier because they transport pets every day.

Make sure that you properly label whatever carrier you use. Print “live animal” and “keep at room temperature” or other important information in large letters. Also include your new phone number and address and any other contact information, such as a cell phone.

When traveling by air, make sure you are well organized. Your pet will experience stress during the entire process, so make it as short as possible. Pack your pet last and only when you are ready to leave for the airport. Make sure you have plenty of time once you get to the airport, but not too long. Direct flights may cost a bit more but not having to switch airlines and spend additional time traveling will help reduce the stress load on your reptile.

Traveling by car

This is a much easier mode of transportation and will cause your pet less stress than airline travel. Traveling by car gives you more pet carrier options. It also allows you to adjust your pet’s heating/cooling needs.

If you transport your pet in its usual cage or container, make sure to remove any objects that could fall and injure them. Also, make sure that the carrier is in a safe place that will minimize movement, especially in case of an accident. The possibility of injury in a moving car may make it advisable to put your pet in a smaller, more secure carrier.

Try to keep stops to a minimum. The sooner you can get your pet to your destination and back to its normal routine, the better for its physical and mental health. If you will require overnight stays, plan ahead to select lodging that allows pets, especially reptiles.

If you dread moving your pets yourself, consider a pet transportation company. If you are expensing relocation, see if you can negotiate having your company pay to have your pets moved professionally. Moving companies are not allowed to transport pets. When considering professional movers, you can ask if they work with or can recommend a pet transportation company. Pet movers handle everything from picking up your pet at home to delivering it to your new home or a kennel. Most offer airline or vehicle travel options.

For pet friendly movers call 720-338-4247 or visit online for your free moving estimate at www.asapmoverscolorado.com


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