Moving overseas can be a challenge. And when you need to bring your cat, it adds a whole other level of complexity to your move. Because the process is complicated, you’ll need to research and plan early to bring your cat when you move internationally. 

Moving internationally with your cat does take time. As soon as you know when and where you are moving, you should begin researching and planning how to move your furry family member. This is particularly important because some paperwork can take up to six weeks to complete

To help you create a plan, we’ll cover everything you need to know about moving your cat internationally.

Is Your Cat Allowed?

It actually depends on the country. The most effective way to find out if your breed of cat is allowed in your destination country is to use this helpful tool from the USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS). You can search by country to learn all the rules and requirements for moving a cat into the country.

Some countries do not allow cats or restrict specific breeds, while other countries limit the number of pets you can bring into their country. Another consideration is where you will be living in the new country. Some buildings and landlords may not allow animals, so you’ll want to find out where you will be living first.

Check the Pet Import Laws of Your Destination 

Each country has strict pet import laws that often require a lot of paperwork, microchipping, a possible passport, a possible quarantine period, and several vaccines before your pet can enter the country. By learning these requirements early, you’ll be able to plan and schedule all the necessary appointments with your veterinarian within the required timeframes.

Related Link: What You Need to Know When Shipping a Pet Internationally

cat in arm

Speak with Your Vet

Contact your vet as soon as possible. They’ll be able to:

  • Assess your pet’s ability to travel and move.
  • Determine the best way for your pet to travel (i.e., with you or as cargo).
  • Prescribe any anxiety medication to soothe your pet during relocation.
  • Set up an appointment for necessary vaccines and health inspection before leaving.

By involving your vet early in the process, you’ll be able to schedule any necessary visits prior to leaving without any hassle.

Your Cat will Need a Passport

Depending on where you are moving, your cat may need a Pet Passport. The European Union issues a Pet Passport to allow pets to travel between countries much like your passport.

In the US, your cat’s passport is the compilation of necessary paperwork that your cat will need to enter the country. At a minimum, most countries require a vet health inspection, rabies vaccination, and a microchip.

Tranquilizer Alternatives

Because you’re not allowed to sedate your cat during travel because of health risks, you’ll need to find tranquilizer alternatives. Talk to your vet for safe options for helping your pet travel.

Work with a Pet Relocation Service

Getting your cat ready to move internationally requires a lot of detail, coordination, and thoughtful planning. During the bustle of moving, your pet’s requirements can slip through the cracks. To alleviate some of the stress and hassle, you may want to use a professional pet relocation service.

All Paws Express assigns a personal consultant to your cat to ensure your pet has all their documentation and comfort during their travel. We specialize in international travel and offer a high-quality turnkey solution for your pet’s relocation. 

Need help with your cat’s travel? Call All Paws Express at 1 (800) 626-5023 to speak to a personal consultant.

Related Link: How Does Pet Shipping Work?

cat on pillow

Understand the Effect Rabies Will Have on Your Plans

A couple of countries are considered rabies-free, unlike the US that is rabies controlled. Depending on where you are moving, certain countries have strict rules about bringing pets into their country to keep rabies out or controlled. You’ll more than likely need to get a current rabies vaccine for your cat, and your cat may be quarantined once you arrive.

Figure Out Timing

As we’ve mentioned before, moving overseas with your cat comes with several requirements depending on your destination. Many of these requirements are time-sensitive and will require careful planning. And some countries, like Japan, may need six months to complete the process of relocating your pet. Do not procrastinate, or your pet may not make it over until later.

Get all Your Documents in Order

You’ll want to have an organized folder of all the necessary paperwork for your destination country, including vaccination records, health certificates, and import documents. You’ll also want to make sure they are certified correctly. It might also be smart to have multiple copies because having missing documents or incomplete documents can mean costly delays or denial of entry.

Call Your Airline

Even if you haven’t booked your air travel, you may want to contact the airlines to learn their international pet travel guidelines and determine which airline will be best for you and your pet. You’ll also want to find out about travel carrier requirements and what your pet will need.

Allow Your Cat to Become Comfortable with Their Crate as Early as Possible

It’s also smart to purchase an airline-approved carrier in advance to allow your cat to become familiar with the carrier. Encourage your cat to sleep, play, eat, and explore inside the carrier as much as possible to help relieve anxiety.

Flying with Your Cat

If you start early, do the research, and create a plan, you’ll be able to bring your cat when you move overseas. This process can be time-consuming and complicated. It may be in your best interest to contact a professional pet relocation company to take one more thing off your plate during the move.

At All Paws Express, we go above and beyond to make your cat’s travel comfortable. We provide quality care through thoughtful details, giving your cat the love and attention they need during relocation.

Unsure of the best way to bring your cat overseas? Call All Paws Express at 1 (800) 626-5023 to ensure your pet receives quality care throughout the relocation process.

Related Link: Get an Estimate on Pet Relocation