Happy Tails Alerts

  • Bully Breed Ground Special - Now Extended Through Summer!

    If you have a Bully Breed who needs to travel during the summer, we are offering a discount on our Ground Transport Planning Fee for contracts received until August 31st! This special is valid for the following dog breeds: American Bulldog, American Pit Bull Terrier, American Staffordshire Terrier, Boston Terrier, Bull Mastiff, Cane Corso, English Bulldog, and French Bulldog.

    Our Bully Breed Ground Transport Planning fee is $150 (reduced from $250).  In addition to the discounted transport planning fee, you will be responsible for the cost of the transportation itself which is based on mileage and/or timing.

    *Please note our Bully Breed Special is only valid for signed contracts received between May 1st - August 31st, 2019.

Popeye

Popeye is really enjoying himself. He just looks very happy and comfortable being an island dog. The first day he was here we went to the beach and if he could talk I would bet he way saying “THIS PLACE IS SO COOL! THANK YOU FOR BRINGING ME HERE!!!” You helped make his trip very stress free and easy. I really appreciated the constant updates, immediately responses and hard work on your end. I felt confident the trip was going to be easy from day one having you on the case. Thank you so much for everything. You and your team really do a great job for people and pets that need help. 

-Anthony and Popeye
Sarasota, FL to Kailua, HI

Joe

Happy Tails did an excellent job transporting my high anxiety dog from California to Oregon as part of our family move.  Every detail was meticulously seen to, and the driver, Mia, went above and beyond to ensure that Little Joe was safe, happy and loved throughout the journey.  She was delayed due to weather, but communicated frequently and sent pictures to set my mind at ease that he was safe and comfortable and well cared for.  I highly recommend this service as a way to get your pet to its new home.

Betsey S. & Joe
Oakland, CA - Portland, OR

Hodges 2 (2)Hodges 1 (2)

The kitties are happy in their new private room and get lots of lovin’ from all of us, especially our little grandkids. Here is a pic of Smokey Lonesome and one of beautiful Bianca- she’s winking and trying to tell you she had a fabulous trip from KY to NH! Oliver was bring camera shy.  Thank you so much for the great service you provided. It was a huge relief to have the cats taken care of so well. We certainly will use your services again if needed, and of course will recommend Happy Tails!

Thanks again,
Karen H.
Lexington, Kentucky - Bradford, New Hampshire

Bohemian Rhapsody  Jumping Jack Flash (3)

Hi Bridget, thank you for the incredible amount of work you and your staff have done towards making the shipping of the two pups to Europe a reality. Now they are gaining weight and enjoying their new home. I have heard from Linda who says how thoroughly pleased she is with the soundness, temperament and quality of the two pups.Thank you again for seeing this through from initial contact to a satisfactory ending for all.

Phyllis Lockwood, Willowrun Great Danes
Clarendon NC to Frankfurt Germany

Kaya (2)

Happy Tails Travel was such a huge peace of mind for me during this pretty stressful move. Kaya arrived in Glasgow with no problems, and was so happy to be reunited with us. They answered dozens of questions to ease my anxious mind and made this process so much easier on me.I can't thank you enough! 

We are settling in nicely, and Kaya LOVES her new home and exploring all the beautiful scenery every day! 

Thanks again for all your help,

Mystie and Kaya
Houston, Texas - Aberdeen, Scotland 

Circe

Circe is settling in well in our new home thanks to Happy Tails Travel, Inc. They handled everything and guided me every step of the way. It was a very seamless and stress-free process. I was especially concerned because she's 19-years-old and was traveling from Chicago to Seattle, but Happy Tails got her to me safely.

Thank you so much Happy Tails Travel & Kim!

Kenyatta B.
Chicago, IL - Seattle, WA


My family and I were moving to LA and so we needed to fly our labradoodle, Emma. We were moving from Miami and with all the temperature restrictions for flying pets in hot temperatures, we knew that it would be tricky. The folks at Happy Tails were great! They booked Emma on a flight and kept us updated on the temperatures. At the last minute, the temperature soared past 85 degrees and the airport folks wouldn't let Emma on the flight. There were no other flights out in the next 24 hours and my family and I were scheduled on our own flights early the next morning. We were freaking out! Kim, at Happy Trails organized for Emma to be picked up in Miami and driven to Orlando, where she found a flight leaving very early in the morning for LA. She saved us a ton of aggravation! And now Emma is a California dog;) Thanks, Happy Tails!

Diane M. & Emma
Miami, FL - Los Angeles, CA

Moose (2)

Our return was a breeze and we settled back into our home life quickly. Pamela was a huge help and made our departure and return so pleasant - thank you again for recommending her to us! The whole process with Happy Tails Travel was so easy on my end and made our travels stress-free. Both times I picked up Moose from the flights he was safe and sound with his tail wagging. I can’t tell you how thankful I am that he was safe and happy throughout our travels. It means the world. 

Thank you so much for everything you did to help us, we are so appreciative. We will not hesitate to use you guys again for any future travels!

Gabi M. & Moose
Round-trip from Seattle, Washington to Newark, NJ

Crate Training Your Dog or Cat for Airline Pet Travel

By: Bridget Monrad, R.N. | Mar 15, 2013

Crate training your dog may take some time and effort, but can be useful in a variety of situations. If you have a new dog or puppy, you can use the crate to limit his access to the house until he learns all the house rules – like what he can and can’t chew on and where he can and can’t eliminate. A crate is also a safe way of transporting your pet in the car, as well as a way of taking him places where he may not be welcome to run freely. If you properly train your dog to use the crate, he’ll think of it as his safe place and will be happy to spend time there when needed. This will be of great benefit if you pet needs to travel by airplane at sometime in his life.

Why is crate training important for Airline Pet Travel?

An airline will not accept a sedated pet! So you cannot say, my cat does not like crates so I will just sedate him. There are too many downside potentials with sedating any pet who will be flying at high altitudes. Even if your vet offers medication for making your pet relaxed, Just Say No.

Selecting A Crate

There are so many choices at a large pet store! Brands, styles, sizes. There are basic rules for pet travel crates.

  • The crate must be big enough for a dog or cat to stand, sit and turnaround without restriction.

  • It must be a heavy duty plastic box with a metal grill door, held together with nuts and bolts. NO plastic latches, clips, or dials.

  • It must have ventilation on at least the sides. The rear of the crate sometimes has ventilation and that is ideal.

  • NO door on top. NO collapsible crate. Vari and Sky Kennels are good brands.

  • Absorbent bedding suggested; we recommend a favorite blanket or towel with your pets’ or your scent on it.

  • The crate needs Live Animal Stickers: our company provides them in a pet travel packet and the airlines generally have them in stock upon check-in.

  • The crate requires 2 cups that attach to the door; I recommend Smart Crock, or Easy Locking Crock. The large cup must be filled with water and frozen overnight to prevent spillage, to keep the water cold, and so the pet does not drink it all at once and choke. The small cup is to remain empty; it is to pour dry food in there in case of an emergency layover. Fill a Ziplock baggie of dry food to attach to top of crate.

  • Make sure the crates nuts and bolts are nice and tight.

The Crate Training Process

Crate training can take days or weeks, depending on your dog or cat’s age, temperament and past experiences. It’s important to keep two things in mind while crate training. The crate should always be associated with something pleasant, and training should take place in a series of small steps - don’t go too fast.

Step 1: Introducing Your Dog To The Crate

  • Put the crate in an area of your house where the family spends a lot of time, such as the family room. Put a soft blanket or towel in the crate. Bring your dog over to the crate and talk to him/her in a happy tone of voice. Make sure the crate door is securely fastened opened so it won’t hit your dog and frighten your pet.

  • To encourage your dog to enter the crate, drop some small food treats near it, then just inside the door, and finally, all the way inside the crate. If he refuses to go all the way in at first, that’s okay – don’t force him to enter. Continue tossing treats into the crate until your dog will walk calmly all the way into the crate to get the food. If he isn’t interested in treats, try tossing a favorite toy in the crate. This step may take a few minutes or as long as several days.

Step 2: Feeding Your Dog His Meals In The Crate

  • After introducing your dog to the crate, begin feeding your pet regular meals near the crate. This will create a pleasant association with the crate. If your pet is readily entering the crate when you begin Step 2, put the food dish all the way at the back of the crate. If your dog is still reluctant to enter the crate, put the dish only as far inside as he will readily go without becoming fearful or anxious. Each time you feed him/her place the dish a little further back in the crate.

  • Once your dog is standing comfortably in the crate to eat his meal, you can close the door while he’s eating. At first, open the our pet door as soon as he finishes his meal. With each successive feeding, leave the door closed a few minutes longer, until he staying in the crate for ten minutes or so after eating. If your pet begins to whine to be let out, you may have increased the length of time too quickly. Next time, try leaving your pet in the crate for a shorter time period. If he does whine or cry in the crate, it’s imperative that you not let him out until he stops. Otherwise, he’ll learn that the way to get out of the crate is to whine, so he’ll keep doing it.

Step 3: Conditioning Your Dog To The Crate For Longer Time Periods

  • After your dog is eating his regular meals in the crate with no sign of fear or anxiety, you can confine him there for short time periods while you’re home. Call him over to the crate and give him a treat. Give him a command to enter such as, "kennel up." Encourage him by pointing to the inside of the crate with a treat in your hand. After your dog enters the crate, praise him, give him the treat and close the door. Sit quietly near the crate for five to ten minutes and then go into another room for a few minutes. Return, sit quietly again for a short time, then let him out of the crate. Repeat this process several times a day. With each repetition, gradually increase the length of time you leave him in the crate and the length of time you’re out of his sight. Once your dog will stay quietly in the crate for about 30 minutes with you out of sight the majority of the time, you can begin leaving him crated when you’re gone for short time periods and/or letting him sleep there at night. This may take several days or several weeks.

Step 4:

  • Part A/Crating Your Dog When Left Alone

    After your dog is spending about 30 minutes in the crate without becoming anxious or afraid, you can begin leaving him crated for short periods when you leave the house. Put him in the crate using your regular command and a treat. You might also want to leave him with a few safe toys in the crate. You’ll want to vary at what point in your "getting ready to leave" routine you put your dog in the crate. Although he shouldn’t be crated for a long time before you leave, you can crate him anywhere from five to 20 minutes prior to leaving. Don’t make your departures emotional and prolonged, but matter-of-fact. Praise your dog briefly, give him a treat for entering the crate and then leave quietly. When you return home, don’t reward your dog for excited behavior by responding to him in an excited, enthusiastic way. Keep arrivals low key. Continue to crate your dog for short periods from time to time when you’re home so he/she doesn’t associate crating with being left alone.

  • Part B/Crating Your Dog At Night

    Put your dog in the crate using your regular command and a treat. Initially, it may be a good idea to put the/she crate in your bedroom or nearby in a hallway, especially if you have a puppy. Puppies often need to go outside to eliminate during the/she night, and you’ll want to be able to hear your puppy when whining to be let outside. Older dogs, too, should initially be kept nearby so that crating doesn’t become associated with social isolation. Once your dog is sleeping comfortably through the night with the crate near you, you can begin to gradually move it to the location you prefer.

Potential Challenge:

  • Whining

    If your dog whines or cries while in the crate at night, it may be difficult to decide whether he’s whining to be let out of the crate, or whether he needs to be let outside to eliminate. If you followed the training procedures outlined above, your dog hasn’t been rewarded for whining in the past by being released from his crate. Try to ignore the whining. If your dog is just testing you, he’ll probably stop whining soon. Yelling at him or pounding on the crate will only make things worse. If the whining continues after you’ve ignored him for several minutes, use the phrase he associates with going outside to eliminate. If he responds and becomes excited, take him outside. This should be a trip with a purpose, not play time. If you’re convinced that your dog doesn’t need to eliminate, the best response is to ignore him until he stops whining. Don’t give in, otherwise you’ll teach your dog to whine loud and long to get what he wants. If you’ve progressed gradually through the training steps and haven’t done too much too fast, you’ll be less likely to encounter this problem. If the problem becomes unmanageable, you may need to start the crate training process over again.

    Special note for cats: Generally the only time they are in a crate is to go to a veterinarian and be poked and prodded and surrounded by dogs and other ‘strange’ pets. This is no fun for a cat, so it is especially important for them to not associate going into a crate with going to the vet. Your cat associating the crate with positive praise, food, treats, quiet time, and toys will help to ease the time spent in a crate, as well as following some of the guidelines of the tips for puppies and dogs above.

For more information, please visit our website at www.happytailstravel.com or give us a call at 1-800-323-1718 or 520-299-3315.  We are always ready and happy to discuss how we can help you to provide a smooth move for any member of your pet family.

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