Retiring to Costa Rica? Take Your Pet With You!
By Jessica Schutt
Retiring, whether full or part-time, to Costa Rica involves planning and organization. What to take, what not to take, how to get it there and where to get it when you get there! But there are some ‘items’ in your life that can’t simply be boxed up or sold at a garage sale… today we’re talking about how you can move your ‘fur babies’ to Costa Rica with you.
For anyone who has pets, there’s no denying they’re an important part of your family, and not to be dismissed during the planning stage of your move to Costa Rica. In fact, putting their ‘retirement plans’ on the back burner is the last thing you should do… if Fido and Whiskers are heading abroad with you, there are some important considerations to heed.
Before Travelling to Costa Rica
While sorting through the details of your move to Costa Rica, ensure your pet is involved. Not physically, but in your thought-process. Are you making a permanent move, or only going for a few months at a time? Will your pet be required to travel in the cargo bay of the plane, or can they ride in the cabin with you? How will they deal with being sedated, or quarantined, if necessary? These are all questions to consider before you choose for them to make the move with you.
The biggest concern that Costa Rica has to pets coming in is the introduction of disease; rabies and Avian Flu being number one, simply because of the potential transfer to humans. Ensuring your pets are certifiably free of all disease is paramount to avoid quarantine periods or rejection.
Schedule an appointment with your vet the minute you make the decision to move to Costa Rica with your pet. If you haven’t kept up with vaccines, there may be a number of booster shots necessary for the medicine to work through your pet’s system, plus, you can begin the collection of documents from your vet to ensure a smooth move. It’s also a good idea to touch base with your local Costa Rican Consulate to see if there’s any additional paperwork that needs to be completed before your pet travels.
Transportation of Your Pet to Costa Rica
Taking measures to make certain both you and your pet’s trip to Costa Rica is stress-free, is key… these points will help you with that:
– Make sure the kennel you have is heavy-duty, approved by the airline you’re flying on and comfy for your pet.
– Many airlines will allow small dogs and cats to travel in the cabin. Enquire with your airline about this option and book it as soon as you can. There is often a limited number they allow per flight.
– If your pet has to travel in cargo, remember that the weather will play a large part in their comfort. Most airlines won’t transport pets when it’s too hot or cold outside, so consider this when you’re booking your flight to Costa Rica.
– If your pet isn’t good at travelling, even in a car, speak with you vet about sedative options. There are a variety of natural and herbal options available on the market as well.
– Consider a pet relocation service. They will do everything from picking your pet up from your home or a kennel to delivering them to your new home in Costa Rica.
Retiring to Costa Rica with your furry friend(s) in tow greatly eases feelings of homesickness, and it’s a great way to meet new friends in your new community! Los Delfines welcomes pets of all kinds with open arms, and looks forward to meeting you and your ‘fur babies’!