Happy Tails Alerts

Fall Season

We love helping pets have a smooth move and want to help you too!

At this time, generic e-mail inquiries and replies to Pet Travel Form submissions are taking about 2 business days from the time they are received. Priority goes to existing clients and those traveling the soonest.

In order to maintain a high level of customer satisfaction, and give our full attention to each client, we require at least 10 business days to accommodate domestic ground transport, and at least 15 business days to accommodate domestic air travel, from the date a signed contract is received.

We regret to inform you that all international services are currently suspended.

If you are interested in working with us, the quickest way to receive a response is to fill out our Pet Travel Form.  It will provide us with the additional details we need to see how we can best assist you.

Thank you for your patience and understanding. We look forward to working with you!

Microchips and International Pet Travel

By: Bridget Monrad, R.N. | Sep 06, 2016


Microchips are a great idea for any pet! They can help reunite you with your pet should they ever get lost and some even allow you to track your pet via GPS!  Microchips are small, electronic chips which are about the same size as a grain of rice.  They are read with a scanner which can read your pet’s unique identification number.   

Along with your pet’s ID number, a microchip can keep information about your dog or cat’s medical information.  However, this information is kept private and can only be accessed by people with access to both a chip reader and database, such as an accredited veterinarian.

While pets living in the United States are not required to have microchips for their regular day-to-day lives, having your pet microchipped is a requirement for any international pet move! This is because the immigration officers use it to compare the pet they are scanning to the veterinary documents you have presented.  As there is a lot of paperwork and vaccinations required for international pet travel, immigration wants to ensure the pet arriving is the one who has met the country’s requirements.

There are different types of microchips on the market, depending on the manufacturer. Most commonly within the US microchips are AVID and contain either 9 or 10 numbers. However, these chips are not ISO compatible due to their encryption.  Therefore, before a pet can travel internationally, they must be equipped with a 15-digit ISO compatible microchip, which is the world standard.

What if my pet already has a 9 or 10-digit microchip?  This is absolutely not a problem! Pets can be fitted with more than one microchip; it will not cause any harm to them and both chips will function normally. A scanner may pick up both chips, but they would be read separately should this happen.  You also have the option of purchasing your own 10-digit reader to travel with your pet for when they arrive in customs.  However, this is not recommended as if for any reason the chip cannot be read your pet will be sent right back home as they will be unable to clear customs.  If your pet is already equipped with the 15-digit microchip, before planning your pet’s move you want to bring your pet to the vet and have the chip scanned.  This will make sure that the chip is still working properly.

Having your pet microchipped is just the first of many steps in preparing your furry family member for their move to another country.  Other requirements may include USDA certification, health certificates, rabies endorsement, pet passports, and quarantine.  Each country has its own requirements, and most are very strict in the order in which requirements must be met.  For example, your pet must first be microchipped and then receive a rabies vaccination.  If your pet is current on rabies, but has not yet been microchipped, just getting your pet chipped will not meet the country requirements! 

Planning and making sure your pet has all of the correct paperwork and vaccinations can be overwhelming for an international move.  For this reason, we highly recommend working with a certified pet shipper, such as Happy Tails Travel. We will provide you with a timeline and detailed check list of all of the requirements your pet must meet to be able to travel by your desired travel date.  We will walk you through each step and be on hand to answer any questions should they arise! Our goal is to get your pet safely to their new home, without any delays for reasons such as misfiled paperwork or improper ordering of vaccinations.

Contact us at www.HappyTailsTravel.com if you have any more questions or concerns regarding microchipping your pet or international pet relocations. Your pets’ comfort and safety is our number one priority!