Monthly Archives: November 2013

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The Paperwork of Travelling with your Pet

Craig road Animal Hospital’s own Dr. Jessica Hagstette discusses the research and paperwork required when leaving Las Vegas with you pet, or taking you pet to Las Vegas from a state other than Nevada or another country. 

Dr. Jessica Hagstette

by Jessica Hagstette, DVM

Traveling with your pet can be a stressful experience for both pet owner and pet. However, it can also mean a significant amount of paperwork for you and potentially testing, vaccinations, and treatments for your pet.

Regulations vary widely between states and even more widely between countries. Additionally, airlines themselves can also have their own rules and certain airports can also have their own restrictions.

Your veterinarian can help with some of this process, however, it does not replace your own research as to what you will need for your trip and your pets paperwork.

General Travel

For most intra-state travel in the contiguous United States a domestic Health Certificate is required. This is a legal document that a veterinarian has examined your pet within 10 days of travel and gives the status of your pet’s vaccinations. A health certificate is usually required by an airline for travel, but may also be asked for at state border crossings.

Certain states, Hawaii for example, have very strict rules about the importing of pets that are more akin to international travel. Checking with your local United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) office will give you some guidance as to any restrictions or issues.  A list of offices can be found here: http://www.aphis.usda.gov/animal_health/area_offices/

Health Certificates need to be issued within 10 days before travel and are then valid for the next 30 days following the travel date. If your travels are to last longer than 30 days you will probably have to find a local veterinarian to issue a new health certificate for your return journey.

Please note that because health certificates are a legal document that states a Licensed Veterinarian has examined your pet on a particular date, the pet will have to be examined on that date of issue – even if your pet received an examination the previous day.

If your pet is not Microchipped we would strongly recommend having this done before any travel. Depending on your destination you  may have no choice but to microchip your pet, but it could also save your pet’s life should they become separated from you during your travels.

Checklist:

Health Certificate

Vaccination records

 Medical Records

 Microchip

Check with local and destination USDA Office

Air Travel

The most important thing about air travel and your pet is to talk to your airline. Each Airline will have their own rules about what documentation they will need and what accommodations will be needed for your pet.

Most airlines will require a Health Certificate and some may also require a “Letter of Acclimation.”

This is simply a letter from a veterinarian stating what temperatures it is OK for your pet to travel in (whether the issue is heat or cold).

Additionally, airports themselves may have their own restrictions so it is important to check with them also.

Finally, not all pets should fly. There are various medical conditions that would preclude your pet from stressful travel. Talk with your veterinarian before a long journey about medications and the general health of your pet.

Checklist:        

Health Certificate

Vaccination records

Medical Records

Microchip

Check with Airline (s)

Check with Airport (s)

Check with veterinarian

International Travel (Export)

Simply put, every country is different and the responsibility for ensuring that your pet does not end up in quarantine, because of a paperwork issue or a lack of a test or vaccine, is yours.

Thankfully the USDA has a great website with a lot of the forms and contact information you will need:

http://www.aphis.usda.gov/animal_welfare/pet_travel/pet_travel.shtml

You will also need to talk with the consulate of your destination country. Luckily, the State Department has a list of consular offices on their website:

http://www.state.gov/s/cpr/rls/fco/

Please note that everything that applies for air travel will also apply to international travel with the added complexity of dealing with a foreign government. Additionally, some international health certificates will need to be endorsed by the local USDA office which may be in a different state.

Checklist:  

Health Certificate

Vaccination records

Medical Records

Microchip

Check with Airline (s)

Check with Airport (s)

Check with veterinarian

Check USDA website

Check with local USDA Office

Check with consulate

International Travel (Import)

The rules for bring a pet into the United States, in general an unexpired health certificate from the country of export will be all that is required for entry. However, local conditions may change that. The Centers for Disease Control  (CDC) can give more information on that and any restrictions that may be in effect.

http://www.cdc.gov/animalimportation/BringingAnimalToUs.html

The USDA has some general information on importing on their website here:

http://www.aphis.usda.gov/import_export/animals/animal_import/animal_imports_pets.shtml

As with exporting, make sure to communicate with your airline and the airports to ensure the process is a smooth as possible.

Checklist:          

Health Certificate

Vaccination records

Medical Records

Microchip

Check with Airline (s)

Check with Airport (s)

Check with veterinarian

Check USDA website

Check with local USDA Office

Check CDC Website

The golden rule for international travel (and Hawaii) with your pet is that you cannot start too early.

The process can be expensive (testing, fees and visits), can take months, and the only guarantee is researching the required paperwork as much as possible. Your veterinarian is there to help you and to make the process is as smooth as possible.

Nov 20, 2013 2 14840 Views

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Circovirus in Dogs

Dr. Debbie White

By Dr. Debbie White

Here is some summarized info on Circovirus in Dogs:

Back in August and September of this year, Circovirus was suggested as a cause of death/illness of dogs in the outbreaks in Ohio, Michigan and California, but researchers no longer consider it to be the primary cause of illness.

Circovirus is thought to possibly be a co-infection in some cases, but is still being studied to determine if and how it played a role in the dogs. It’s important to know that Circovirus has been isolated out of completely healthy dogs. In one study Circovirus was isolated from the stool of 14 out of 204 healthy dogs- so just testing positive for the virus doesn’t mean the pet is going to become sick.

In November in Las Vegas a dog became sick with bloody vomiting and diarrhea at a boarding facility. The dog was promptly taken to a veterinarian, tested negative for parvovirus infection and treated aggressively with intravenous fluids and supportive care. The dogs condition worsened and it subsequently died. Post mortem tests revealed the dog was positive for Circovirus. Other post-mortem pathogen tests were not performed.

With the identification of Circovirus in Las Vegas, pet owners and veterinarians should consider Circovirus in cases of severe gastrointestinal illness, particularly if the symptoms worsen suddenly, if shock symptoms set in, or if bleeding develops into the chest or abdomen cavity.

The identification of Circovirus in a Las Vegas dog is of concern, but should not cause dog owners to panic. There are a lot of reasons why dogs have vomiting or diarrhea. Here are some tips for dog owners:

· Keep your dog current with other recommended vaccinations. A pet with weakened immune system or not up to date on other infectious illnesses may be at greater risk of illness with Circovirus.

· Avoid contact with obviously sick dogs.

· Be watchful for vomiting, diarrhea, and lethargy. Contact your veterinarian if suspicious symptoms arise.

· Seek prompt veterinary care including intravenous fluids for suspected cases. Early treatment seemed to help improve survival of sickened pets in the earlier outbreaks.

I invite you to read more information about Circovirus on the American Veterinary Medical Association’s webpage at: https://www.avma.org/KB/Resources/Pages/Circovirus-in-Dogs-Frequently-Asked-Questions.aspx

Nov 15, 2013 0 4725 Views

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