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Experiences 'Shipping' Kitties?

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
For all of you who have shipped your cats to their new homes and for those of you who have had your kitties flown to you, what has been your experience?

Are there any specific things to look out for?

Whats the procedure when you send them off (breeders)?

Whats the procedure when you pick them up (adopters)?

Are they generally stressed out when they arrive?

When is the best time to take them to the vet?

Anything the vet should look out for?

My Ares will be flying from Montana to Chicago next week and I'm a little nervous. I'm worried about how he'll take it. I'm convinced its got to be a scary event for him, leaving his home and traveling in a big metal bird with all kinds of strangers, only to arrive in the arms of a new stranger who swears she loves him. Do treats help?

Nial, I know you let your cats out of their cages when in the car. Do you think this might help Ares when I pick him up? The car ride from the airport to my home is usually only 20 minutes (but with this being christmas weekend at the airport, who knows!)

Thank you so much everyone!
post #2 of 12
I've only had cats shipped to me (kitten/pregnant adult). No problems. I just knew when they were due in and was waiting as soon as they got off the plane.

Most times pets are taken to a special area - NOT with the baggage stuff You just verified who you were to pick them up. The airlines take good care of them - trying to minimize the time sitting on the tarp.

The cats were usually curled up in the back of the carriers, but sometimes were loud and mouthy

When you ship you have to get a DIRECT flight (even if it costs more) - that way the animal goes on the plane and stays on the plane - no side trips to another plane. You also have to have all shot records and vet clearance paper no more then 10 days before flight.

Call the airlines on temps - if its under or over a certain temp, the airlines will NOT fly the pet unaccompanied. Spring/fall are the better times to ship. The temp conditions go for both departure city and arrival city. For example: you live in Texas and shipping the cat to Minnesota. If its too hot in Texas they will not ship. If its too cold in MN, they will not ship.


As far as vet - usually the breeder will have in the adoption papers that the cat must see a vet within 48-72 hours of pickup - to validate the cat is healthy (I had 48 hrs in my contracts). So if you know when you'll pick up (or ship) schedule the vet appointment within 2 days.

Changes in water/food can cause a little stress and possible diarraha or upset tummy for a few days. So its recommended that you use bottled water for about a week and then gradually change over to your local water.
post #3 of 12
Thread Starter 
Wow! Thats for the info GK!!!

My breeders contract says 48hrs for the vet (I think, I'll have to check).

I went to a few of the airport sites and read their rules on pets. I'm wondering though, if a cat can fly in the cabin with the flight attendants. Is that possible?
post #4 of 12
No - they will not be responsible for pets. If you are not personally flying with the cat on board, it will be put under the plane. Sorry
post #5 of 12
I've had 2 cats shipped to me, SunLee my little Siamese girl, and Angel my Bengal girl.

SunLee was extremely stressed, and it took about a week before she started to relax. However, once she relaxed she incorporated into my fur family with no problems. I foolishly let her out without seperating her, and she found very hard hiding places to get to. Finally, I just set food out, and let her alone, when she was brave enough to come out and eat, I quickly put her in her own room, and then went in and spent time with her a lot during the day. I'd also let the other cats in with me sometimes and they didn't stress her out at all. Finally, one day after week 2, she wanted out and that was it. It was just like she'd lived me for a hundred years.

Angel on the other hand, wasn't stressed at all after the flight, but she still has major problems with my other Bengal, Simba. She does get along with the other cats, but she really has yet to trust Simba.
post #6 of 12
Thread Starter 
*sigh* Not what I wanted to hear GK, but it is what it is. If we have to delay shipping we will. My breeder just e-mailed me and will be giving me the details this weekend.

Hope, Sorry to hear Angel doesn't get along with Simba. Were your cats shipped in the cargo hold or did someone fly in with them?

What is 'counter to counter service'? I think my breeder mentioned this before. She said it was more expensive, but it was the only way she was willing to fly her cats out.
post #7 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by tiffanyjbt View Post

Nial, I know you let your cats out of their cages when in the car. Do you think this might help Ares when I pick him up? The car ride from the airport to my home is usually only 20 minutes (but with this being christmas weekend at the airport, who knows!)
I've picked up a few bengals from the airport myself. I've always left them in the carrier, if it's a short ride. Keep in mind, that they've been through quite alot to get to you. The carrier has become a comfort zone for them. For longer rides, with a clearly relaxed kitten who wants to be held and petted, I have of course let them out.

You can make your own judgement when you see Ares. Is he sort of cowering in the carrier? If so, leave him be. You can soothe him by talking nice to him on the way home, but let him stay in his familiar location.

On the other hand, if he's purring and head butting the door to the carrier, I'm sure he'd like to come out and greet the nice people who have rescued him from the noisy airport.

As for my own bengals on road trips, I do always let them ride outside of their carriers. I realize it can be dangerous for them, should we be involved in a traffic accident, but the trade off is many hours of completely miserable cats locked up in their carriers, clawing and screaming to get out.
post #8 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kai Bengals View Post
On the other hand, if he's purring and head butting the door to the carrier, I'm sure he'd like to come out and greet the nice people who have rescued him from the noisy airport.
I can't help but grin at this. It'll be nice to be seen as his rescuer.

I can't help but to feel a little bad about taking him from his home (both furfamily and peoplefamily). Is this silly?

*sigh* The anticipation is going to kill me!!!
post #9 of 12
I have only shipped one kitten, and it was a pretty good expirience. I used continental they were great. I had him neutered and his health certificate done, they only last for ten days so I had to wait 7 days to make sure he was heald and I had planned on shipping on that day (however it didn't work out that way and I had to end up having 2 more certificates, LOL) He did ok, he had a 3 hour drive to boston before his flight to CO. I sent him with his food and froze a dish of water so it didn't spill and get him wet but he could lick the ice, and had a blanket with familiar scents on it to help make him comfy. When his new owner picked him up he was happy to see her (she sent me a cuddle cat thing she slept with so he had smelled her scent before meeting her) She called me before she even left the airport with him and she let him out of his carrier, he slept in her lap on the way home I think. But all in all it isn't a cruel expirience for them, unpleasent, but they do fine and most airlines are very conciderate and helpful, you can even track the flight on line to see where they are and if they are still on time, ect. They are also very willing to answer questions and assure you your new baby is fine (or convince the breeder there being well cared for.) The airlines are very good with it an your baby will be fine
post #10 of 12
There is a website that was put together by a man who has a service dog. He had a terrible experience traveling with his dog and as a result he started researching the airlines and their reports. PetFlight.com has excellent information. The reports include a listing of all reported pet losses, injuries, or deaths on a month by month basis and also any explanation on the causes.http://www.petflight.com/pet-incidents/list
They also have a page with travel or shipping requirements for each airline.
http://www.petflight.com
post #11 of 12
Thread Starter 
Thats a great site! Thank you!
post #12 of 12
Your welcome
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