There are a number of frequently asked questions that we have received over the last 35 years. Hopefully the answers on this page will give you peace of mind. The questions have been designed with pet owners in mind.
Special note: The UK will leave the EU on 31 October 2019. If there’s a no-deal Brexit the rules for pet travel will change. The UK will become a third country when it leaves the EU. Third countries can apply to the European Commission to be listed. In the EU Pet Travel Scheme, there are 3 categorisations of third country. Dogs may be required to have a Rabies Titer test 3 months (12wks) before the time of travel, tapeworm treatment 1-5 days before travel and they may also require a UK pet passport. The changes will depend on how the UK is categorised. If anything changes we will post an update here.
What type of animals do you transport ?
We transport cats, dogs, birds and most domestic pets (including the odd Hedgehog!). If you’re not sure, give us a call or send us an email.
Will I require a pet passport ?
You need a pet passport to take your cats and dogs out of the UK to other EU countries. For some countries there are additional requirements. We will be happy to advise you on the specific country you are looking to travel to/from. To obtain a pet passport your pet must be micro-chipped and then be vaccinated against rabies. After 21 days your pet may travel. The clinical examination page must be stamped and signed by your vet.
What documentation is required when I export my pet to a non-EU country ?
Regulations vary, we can advise you of each countries requirements. DEFRA will then be able to provide your licensed veterinary officer with an export health certificate to enable your pet to travel. We will complete all other paperwork, including airline booking forms and any HM Customs and Excise documentation.
What type of container will my pet travel in ?
We provide bespoke Wooden Travel boxes (made to measure for your pet) which means your pet travels in the most appropriate sized box to and it also means accurate freight charges. Your pet will have sufficient room to travel comfortably, and will be able to lie down, sit up and turn around. Alternatively we provide standard sized IATA approved plastic travel boxes. You can also provide your own travel box but it must meet International Air Transport Association (IATA) regulations.
How do I measure my pet ?
It is extremely important that the measurements you provide for your pet are as accurate as possible. All measurements need to be in centimetres. If your container is deemed to be too small, your pet could be refused travel at the airport. If your container is too large, this could cost you extra unnecessary expense.
The most easy and accurate method that we at PetsAway UK have found to measure pets is …
Have two people to measure :
Length : Stand your pet against a wall, make a mark where their nose is and a mark where the base of their tail is, do not include the tail. Measure across in a straight line from nose to base of tail. Do not measure down the back of the neck and along the body.
Width : Measure across the widest part of your pet. This is usually the shoulders.
Height : Measure from the top of your pet’s head to the floor when standing and then again when your pet is sitting. Most pets are taller when sitting. We will require the tallest measurement of the two. If your pet has erect ears measure from the top of the ears to the floor for both measurements.
Can I use my own travel container ?
You may supply your own container, but it is your responsibility to ensure it is IATA approved. Many plastic containers on sale in the UK do not always conform to the current IATA regulations, so most airlines will not allow them. We will be happy to advise you if your own container is suitable. If supplying your own container, we will still require you to provide your pets measurements as well as the dimensions of the container. This is to ensure that your pet is travelling in the correct size. Even if your pet travelled to the UK in the container you provided, it does not necessarily mean that your pet will be able to leave the UK in the same container. The rules regarding the sizing of containers are strictly adhered to in the UK and unfortunately this is not always the case in other countries. There are many instances of pets arriving in the UK in containers that are too small and they would NOT be allowed to leave the UK in the same one.
What happens on the day of travel ?
We can arrange to collect your pet on the day of travel, or meet you and your pet at the airport cargo centre, full instructions and directions will be provided prior to departure.
Where will my pet be located in the aircraft ?
Your pet will travel in the aircraft’s hold, which is heated, pressurised and dark. These conditions help to keep your pet safe and calm. Most animals sleep once the aircraft is airborne.
Do I have access to my pet during the flight ?
Neither the passengers nor the crew are allowed to access to the cargo hold during the flight. You will not have access during any refueling point.
Can my pet travel on the same flight as me ?
If you provide us with details of your flight, we will be able to advise you if this is possible. With the welfare of your pet in mind, we arrange the most suitable flights for your pet to minimize stress and discomfort. To avoid you incurring unnecessary costs, it is advisable for us to check availability for pets before you book your own flight if you wish to travel at the same time.
What happens when my pet arrives at its destination ?
You will receive full instructions and details of overseas handling agent.
Should I feed and water my pet before travelling ?
We advise that you only feed your pet lightly the evening prior to travel. Do not feed it at all on the day of the flight. Animals are not fed during the flight, but they do have access to water. The airline will provide water immediately before pets are loaded onto the aircraft. All travel containers are fitted with water containers, which are refilled during transits. International airports are well equipped to handle all types of animals and may transfer them to specialised animal holding units on long stopovers.
Should my pet be sedated ?
No. For the complete safety of your pet, airlines will refuse any animal that appears to be sedated. The hold of the aircraft is pressurised and this lowers the blood pressure. Because sedatives generally work by lowering blood pressure, the combined effect could harm the animal.
If your pet is nervous you may use Adaptil for dogs or Feliway for cats to spray the inside of the container.
These are natural pheromone sprays and are permitted by the airlines. They are readily available online or from your vet.
If we haven’t answered your question above, please feel free to contact us, we are only too happy to help.