Whether you’re planning to move your pet across the country or to another continent, there are many things you need to consider. You probably won’t be surprised that the main concern about such moves is the budget that will be required for you to safely and legally transport your dog to their new home. Even if you choose not to hire a professional service to coordinate everything for your dog’s travel, the items you need to acquire and the procedures you need to go through to get them moved are likely to add up to a pretty hefty price tag. 

International & Domestic Dog Shipping Expenses

To help you keep track of everything you’re going to need to relocate with your dog, here’s a list of the primary expenses to keep in mind as you go forward. Exact prices are impossible to give, as different companies charge different rates, but it should help you develop a general idea of what you’re going to need to budget for depending on weather you’re traveling internationally or domestically.

Vet Visits 

To travel safely with your pet, they will need to get a selection of vaccines and go through some blood tests to ensure that they are safe and healthy enough to travel. Visiting your primary veterinarian is generally sufficient for this. However, you may be required to take your dog to an accredited or government-approved veterinarian if you plan to move internationally. You must go through whatever sort of pet import requirements your destination has to ensure there aren’t any issues.

Related: Is Relocating Your Pet Affordable?

Travel Crate

Whether your dog will be traveling in-cabin or in the cargo hold is essential to consider. Either way, you will have to purchase a crate that satisfies requirements put forth both by the airline you’re flying with and the International Air Transport Association (IATA). These travel crates come in a range of sizes and prices, so it’s essential to choose one that will not only fit your overall budget but will also be large enough to accommodate your dog during travel comfortably. You’ll also need to look into additional amenities you can add to the crate, particularly if you’re going on a more extended flight. Detachable food and water dished are important to have in these cases.

Airline Ticket & Fees 

Most of your dog’s moving budget will be going towards paying for the cost of airfare. Airlines will tend to charge much more for traveling with a live animal than for standard passenger tickets. This is largely due to all of the extra care, and attention pets require during the journey. To keep your dog in cargo, airlines will generally base the price of the ticket off of either the volume of your pet’s travel crate or the combined weight of your pet and their crate.

It’s also important to consider if  your dog’s transport will require any layovers. These usually result in additional fees that you’ll have to pay if the layover lasts for more than a few hours. If a layover like this occurs, you don’t have to worry about your pet’s care or safety. They will be looked after at a pet hotel until their next flight. But you will need to be mindful of the extra charges this will create and how they will affect your overall budget.

Do you need a top-quality pet relocation service for your next big move? Check out All Paws Express or call toll-free at +1 (800) 626-5023 to learn about what they can do for you.

Other Transport Services

A dog sticking its head out a car window.

While many may choose to travel by plane, there are other types of safe transport service options available to bring your precious pup from point A to point B. Here are the other main transportation options you should consider for your pet’s big move:

Ground Transport

Ground transport of your pet is an option that more pet owners are having to rely on due to COVID-19 since many airlines are no longer accepting pets. Owners of large breed or snub-nosed dogs may be required to use this type of service, as airlines will not typically allow them to fly.

Sea Transport 

If your destination is not accessible via ground transportation and you cannot fly with your dog, sea transport is yet another option available to you. Transport of pets by sea is often done when traveling internationally over any large bodies of water. However, relatively few commercial vessels will take on pet transport unless they are listed as an emotional support or service animal.

Related: Pet Transport Costs and The Benefits Of Using A Pet Transporting Company

Other International Expenses

A dog in a suit with a camera on top of a suitcase.

Many additional expenses will also be involved if you intend to move your animal between countries, especially overseas. Here are some of the primary ones that you’re going to want to keep in mind as you go forward with your move.

Import permits 

There are some countries that will only allow you to bring your pet with you if you have an import permit for the animal. Acquiring one of these can be difficult and costly, as it requires getting formal permission from a country’s government. 

Government approval or endorsements 

You may be required to show your pet’s veterinary paperwork to get a government endorsement or approval prior to traveling internationally with your pet. Some countries may also require multiple endorsements from the USDA or a consular. 

Customs Clearance 

Once your dog arrives at your destination, you’ll be required to cover a number of costs for taxes, tariffs, and country-specific fees before they will release your dog back into your care. Make sure you know what these charges will be before you travel.


Some countries, such as Malaysia and New Zealand, require animals to go through a quarantine period at a facility before being released to you. Stays in these facilities can be quite costly due to the care and services they provide, including food, walks, and medical care if it becomes needed.

Related: How To Choose The Right Pet Shipping Company

Should You Hire Professionals?

At the end of the day, some people choose to handle the pet moving process on their own, but many eventually decide that it’s worth the price for a company to organize and keep track of everything. Moving is already a stressful experience for everyone involved, so keeping track of all that you need to do to bring your dog with you may not be something you want to handle. Hiring an all-in-one service is often a relief for pet owners since it means that there’s one less thing to worry about during the move. They at least know that their dog will be well cared for and transported safely.

Are you relocating and need some help bringing your dog with you? Reach out to All Paws Express to learn about how their top-quality services can help you.