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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I will be returning to Portland, OR for about three months in order to get Doc ready to fly to Israel. I have to get the rabies titer test going and also purchase a crate for him to fly in. I know which one I want to get:
Petmate Ultra Traditional Vari Kennel Portable Kennel at PETCO
It has additional places to zip-tie the kennel together (which I've heard is very important for flying) and is very sturdy. I also like the design on the top of the kennel, makes it harder for stacking things on top.
He hasn't been in a crate for a while, so most of the three months will be used to gently get him used to it again.

My biggest questions are surrounding the actual flight and I am hoping that some people with experience will chime in. I am extremely nervous about subjecting Doc to an international flight. I am going to get him the largest kennel allowed (recommended by his vet) to allow him a little room to stretch (because of the Wobbler's) and more room to turn around.
Right now I sssooo wish there was a way Doc could fly in the cabin with me!

There are no nonstop flights from Portland, OR to Israel. All the nonstop flights fly out of Los Angeles, New York and Philadelphia... I believe. My hubby is doing most of the airline research. My hubby found a flight from Portland to LA with a four hour layover then the long stretch from LA to Israel. He thought during the layover, I would be able to get Doc and take him for a walk but I don't think I have access to him, do I?

Do the airlines transporting him ever take him out of the kennel? That may sound like a stupid question but including the layover, if Doc isn't taken out of his kennel then that would make his time spent in it 20 hours! Probably more since that is the duration of the flight itself.

I know it is required to put absorbent bedding in the crate in the event he urinates in it... but I don't want him to have to but it sounds like he won't have much of a choice.

I'm honestly really concerned for Doc's well being and am even considering scratching the whole idea and just staying in the United States with Doc until my hubby finishes his work here in Israel... but my hubby doesn't like that idea... I don't really either but I am so torn!

Sorry for the length but I am really concerned and guess I am mainly looking for advice and pep-talks.

I'm also considering driving to LA to board a nonstop flight. Doc has some friends that would love to see him and so do I. It would also reduce the total duration by probably 5-6 hours.

Is a nonstop flight better?
 

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A road trip to begin with could be an awesome experience for you and Doc...something you will always cherish....allow yourself time for frequent stops and visits on the way...even make a movie of it :D

20+ hrs is a long time in a crate. ;) ....although imported dogs to Australia have to do those sorts of hours par for the course....so it can be done.
 

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Normally, I would not worry too much about the flight. I have traveled overseas with dogs several times and never had a problem. The only thing that would give me any pause is his wobblers and I do not know how bad that is or whether 20 hours in a crate would have any affect.

If you think this could be an issue, you might look into flying across the US from Portland before you connect, then take him out and give him a break before you go on to Israel so that the second leg is not so long. I have had good luck with Delta in Atlanta allowing me to take the dog out and exercise between flight on the way back from Europe. You would need to check with the airline about the policy at the individual airport you would be connecting in.

No, airline employees should NEVER take you dog out of the crate without notifying you. I always put a sing on the crate that says

"My name is XXXXX. I am traveling with my owner Doug Matson on Flight 123 to XXXXX. DO NOT EVEN THINK ABOUT TAKING ME OUT OF MY CRATE WITHOUT MY OWNER PRESENT. He can be reached at (Cell Phone Number)"

The airline is required to give water after so many hours and they are also required to give food after so many more hours. I think it is like 12 and 24 hours, but I am not sure. That is why you will need to have the water bowls attached to the door and a small bag of food taped to the top of the crate.

I usually layer a whole roll of paper towels in the bottom of the crate to use for the absorbent material. It will soak up most or all of anything and still leave hime something somewhat dry to lay on.

The other thing I ALWAYS do is when you get on the plane, tell the flight attendant that you are taveling with a very valuable dog and that you want her to have the captain call down to the cargo crew and insure that the dog is on board before they leave. They will normally come to your seat and personally tell you that the dog is loaded. If they do not, I ring the call button about the time they close the door and ask again. I know it makes me a pain, but I have never had a problem with my dogs not coming with me.

Good Luck.
 

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I agree totally that you should drive or fly across the US. Take him out. Maybe stay over night and rest up. That's a very long time to be crated.
 
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my advice is you need to call el al right now and find someone there familiar with shipping dogs to israel. i use a man called dave.

i dont know if you've shipped him before but i dont think so based on the crate questions - (ALSO, i have a 50 lb mix and they required at LEAST a 500... we're afraid he's going to need a 700 varikennel so i think for a doberman el al may make you use one)

the process to get a dog over isn't super easy - has his rabies been within the last year? and was his microchip before the rabies, or on that day? there are strict rules in terms of that. and theres no definite timeline from Kansas state - when they get you your titer is when they get it. ive had anywhere from 10 days to a month.

and you need to get your import permit first (annex A), and then you can start the USDA certificates (you need a USDA form 7001 as well as the israeli form itself) and israel needs to approve them to book the flight with el al, i believe. and you have to do all this in 10 days.

but first, make sure his rabies is legit and so is his ISO compliant chip. ive got a dog held up for 4 months now because he wasn't microchipped when someone else started the process and we are FINALLY hoping to get the dog a flight in the next week or so. i filled out his last health certificate on 2/22!!!

also im sure you know, but depending on the day you fly him, they recommended we fly out in the afternoon so he arrives first thing in the morning so the vet can release him from quarantine, otherwise he's in the crate even longer. and obviously choose your days wisely so you avoid the shabbos.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thank you everyone for the input! I'm good on all the medical / veterinary stuff that has to be done since I worked in vet clinics for many years and have personally handled international health certificates to all over the world. I am bummed that Kansas State is the only lab in the United States that does the Rabies titer test. I know it takes anywhere from 2-6 weeks (on average) to get the results. Doc has had plenty of rabies vaccines and has two microchips, one is international.
Doberkim, thanks for the advice on the quarantine... I didn't even really think about that. I was told that so long as I had all the paperwork in order, he will be able to be picked up immediately. I was planning on sending the hubby to pick Doc up before me. My hubby has been in touch with El Al, a good friend of his works there, I just hope all the information he has been given is correct.

I'm so glad Kansa pitched in too! Great advice about making sure you know your dog is on the jet. I don't care if the entire crew thinks I'm a pain, I want to know my dog is safe. I will also put a sign on his crate in both English and Hebrew.

I worry so much about the duration of the flight having an impact on Doc... I actually just finished talking to some good friends and we might road trip across the US to New York, stay there for a little bit then take a non-stop flight from New York to Israel which would probably cut the time he spends in his kennel almost in half. Which will make me feel so much better.

Thanks again everyone.

:bow:
 
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