Friday, June 3, 2011

More Pet Travel Updates - Updated

I have to admit that I've been slacking off a bit in my planning for our trip to Italy. I have finally printed the right forms that need to be completed related to Seymour's health status. I called my vet and found out that he is an accredited vet through the USDA. That is very important - make sure the vet you go to is accredited - not all are since accredited is different than licensed. When I called my vet, they told me that when I make an appointment, I need to let them know to which country we will be traveling because they do their own research on what tests, etc. need to be completed. They won't rely on the information I have. I like that.

I'm still concerned about the microchip. One piece of information I read said that the pet MUST have a 15 digit non-encrypted microchip operating at 134.2 kHz. Seymour has a 10 digit microchip. But I also saw that if they don't have the 15 digit microchip, you must bring your own scanner. I hope the latter is true because it will be easier than thinking about putting 2 microchips in him. Other information (besides the microchip stuff) related to bringing a dog to Italy includes:
1. Dates must be written in the DD-MM-YYYY format on all forms.
2. Dogs over 3 months must have had their rabies vaccination more than 21 days prior to departure.
3. Inoculation record must include name of vaccine, manufacturer of vaccine, batch number, date administered and expiration date of the vaccine. (I sure hope we have all of that information somewhere because I did change vets)
4. Only the rabies vaccination is mandatory but the follow are recommended: Distemper, hepatitis, leptospirosis, parovirus and parainfluenza. My vet was telling me about the parainfluenza vaccination but I opted not to get it; I might have to change my mind.

After the vet fills out the EU form 998 within 14-21 days of the date of departure, then I have to take the form to the area UDDA/APHIS/VS office with a check for $36
to get the form certified.

I also found a farmstay website where you can stay on a farm in Italy I emailed them to see if Seymour could stay and they promptly wrote back and said "yes, but he would need to stay outside." That won't work for me since Seymour is not an outside dog, so I'm glad I asked.

UPDATED: I just received an email from Antonio at farmstay and they said that since Seymour is so small that if I rented a private room, it would have an outside door so Seymour could stay in the room. BUT he shouldn't sleep on the bed. I appreciated their flexibility with this and said I would get back with them when I made a decision.

Wow, getting Seymour ready for this trip is much more work than getting me ready! I am gathering clothes and necessities to bring with me. I am purchasing some quick-dry clothes so that I can wash things and have them dry overnight since I am planning on bringing very few items. I'm sure that by the end of 3 months, I'll be sick of the clothes I brought. I have heard that people have left the clothes they don't want where ever they were traveling but others have said that it isn't proper. I'll just make that decision when I'm there. I'm also planning on bringing some inexpensive bracelets to give as gifts to people we stayed with. They will take up little space in my backpack and I hope will be a nice gesture. Of course,I know that money is always accepted as a thank you.

Next step - getting those plane reservations made. I found the cheapest dates to travel but I will need to call AirFrance to be sure there is room for Seymour on those flights. Once I have those reservations made, this trip will be more "real" to me.

UPDATE: In one day, the cost of the flight increased about $200. Now I'm going to wait until next Wed or Thurs to see if the price goes down. I read that the worst time to buy an airline ticket was Friday or Saturday, but I have a feeling it is probably going to be the same price (and hopefully not higher) next week. Another lesson learned!

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