It’s no secret that moving homes, especially to another country, can be an expensive endeavor. As if the stress of moving itself isn’t enough, the costs can quickly add up and weigh heavily on your mind. And this is true for civilians.
But when you sign up to serve your country in the military, you know that relocation is part of the package. Your family knows it too, but that doesn’t make it any easier each time you have to move to a new station. So, anything that can help lighten the load and make the process smoother is a big relief.
One aspect that is often overlooked and can be a huge source of stress is the cost and complexity of relocating your pets. While reimbursement costs have long been available for military personnel to move their belongings and family members, our furry friends have been left out of the equation. Fortunately, that is no longer the case!
In 2022, a bill was introduced, authorizing the Department of Defense (DOD) with its required activities for the 2023 financial year. This bill included an amendment that brings great news for military personnel with pets: an allowance for the relocation of pets of members of the uniformed services. This is fantastic news that can help alleviate the cost, pressure, and concern associated with pet relocation.
What’s Included in the Pet Relocation Allowance?
The pet relocation allowance covers costs that arise from the need to relocate your pet due to a Permanent Change of Duty Station (PCDS) to or from a location outside of the United States. So, if you’re about to relocate to Australia, the United Kingdom, or Europe, this is great news for you and your furry companion.
How Much is the Allowance?
There are certain limitations on the reimbursement. It is capped at $4000 and is only applicable for PCDS relocations. The amount you receive depends on factors such as rank and length of service.
When Does the New Bill Take Effect?
The good news is that since this amendment was made in 2022, the 180-day waiting period required after the day of enactment has already passed. This means that you can currently apply for the relocation reimbursement.
How Can I Take Advantage of the Allowance?
With so many things to take care of during your move, the best way to ensure you receive financial assistance for your pet’s relocation is to reach out to the team at Pet Express. We have years of experience in pet transportation and are experts in the field. While these reimbursements have only recently come into effect, we are working closely with duty personnel to ensure a smooth move for your pet, making it one less thing on your plate.
What Else Should I Consider?
Depending on the military bases you’ll be relocating to, there are a few other things you’ll need to consider.
United States Department of Agriculture Endorsement
As part of your military pet relocation, certain documents will need to be endorsed by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). Typically, you’ll need to make an appointment and either visit a USDA office or mail the paperwork. It’s important to note that the USDA endorsement can only be completed the day before the flight. If you choose to handle this step yourself, you’ll need to pay additional fees for priority posting to ensure the paperwork reaches the departure airport in time. Alternatively, Pet Express can take care of this step for you as well.
Quarantine and Health Certificates
Different countries have different customs and quarantine periods for pets. While many countries don’t require pets to quarantine, some, such as Australia, Fiji, Guam, and Taiwan, do. Luckily, this is just one of the many services offered by Pet Express, and the cost is included in your pet relocation expenses. Depending on your destination, you may also need to provide health certificates for your pet.
Additionally, if you choose Pet Express for your military pet relocation, you can rest assured knowing that we are certified by the International Pet and Animal Association (IPATA). This non-profit trade association of independent members is dedicated to the safe and humane transport of pets and other animals. Your pet will be in good hands, and your stress levels are guaranteed to reduce.
Want to Know More?
If you’d like to know more about military pet relocation and the full range of pet relocation services we offer at Pet Express, don’t hesitate to reach out. Our friendly team would love to assist you in moving your important and beloved furry friend, making the process of your Permanent Change of Duty Station a little bit easier and simpler.