The number of people going overseas to teach English is increasing every year, and so more and more teachers are having to decide what to do with their pets. Just how difficult is it take take your pet abroad with you and what kinds of problems might you face?
When weighing up the pros and cons in this matter, you will probably conclude that it is definitely easier to leave you pet at home with a close friend or family member. But, as we all know, what is easiest is not always what makes you happiest.
Rules and regulations for bringing pets into a new country differ from nation to nation and also depend a great deal on the country that you are leaving in the first place. It will not be a swift, easy process at either end, and a fair bit of paperwork, vaccinations and possibly even microchips for your pet will be required. You will almost certainly need a health certificate for your pet, and this could take a considerable amount of time to process.
Is your pet a dog, cat, snake, iguana or something even more fascinating? The type of animal you have will be subject to specific rules too. If it’s an unusual one, the rules might be much stricter at either end. Check at the relevant Embassy websites for the most up-to-date information.
What kind of visa will you be entering the country on initially? If it’s a Tourist Visa, then you are likely to run into more problems than if you will be arriving on a full Work Visa from the beginning.
It will also cost a significant amount of money, depending on the method of transport you will be using and the specific quarantine procedures in place at the destination country. Usually the quarantine period is about 48 hours at the destination. Bear in mind that, unless you are planning to stay in your new country forever, this procedure will have to be repeated in the opposite direction at some later date. This could be quite stressful for your pet, especially an older one.
Other important issues to consider include who will be looking after your pet when you are at work teaching. Will you have time to walk your pet on a regular basis? What are the rules about pet ownership at your apartment or housing complex?
In all honesty, how long do you expect to be teaching overseas? This is a very difficult question for each and every overseas teacher to answer, but if you think you are likely to be back in your country of origin the following year then the disadvantages almost certainly outweigh the advantages of taking your pet abroad with you.