How to Move Pets to Hawaii: Via Cruiseship?

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#1
Grand Junction, CO
203 Posts
Joined Sep 2000
Okay, an odd question but I need an answer.

We have three dogs ranging in age from 7 to 15 years old. We are planning to move to Kauai but are dead set against putting the older dogs in the belly of any plane. They aren't sickly, but we worry they won't make the trip.

Short of leasing a private jet, do cruiselines accomodate pets for a move? Couldn't we book the penthouse suite and keep them with us at all times? I know people used to take their animals (before air travel was the norm) on cruises, but have only seen one dog onboard in 20 years - he was a certified companion dog for a woman who had psychological issues.

Do freighters travel with passengers on that route? Will they take pets? I'm sure other people have had this problem. We can't be the first; right?

HELP!!! Any ideas?

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#2
Richardson, TX
71,088 Posts
Joined Dec 2006
Cruiselines dont allow pets, not any I know of. You might do a search.

I lived in Hawaii when they quarantined pets, talk about hard on the pets. Having to drive every day to Honolulu to visit your pet in a cage for 3 months. I think they finally quit the quaratine.
#3
Ontario
754 Posts
Joined Feb 2007
Hi Pengawin3,

I don't think any major cruiseline will allow pets on board unless they are a service dog, but you may find some charter companies that will. I found this website on the internet and I think it may be of some help to you. The link below takes you directly to Pets and cruiselines/ charters travel. There is a ton of info there.

www.petsonthego.com/transcruischrtr.html

I hope you find what you're looking for and this infiormation is of some value to you.

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#4
Arizona/Missouri
14,848 Posts
Joined Feb 2002
My friend went through the same thing when she moved from Arizona to the Big Island three years ago-3 dogs including an aging Great Dane and 4 cats. She finally hired a private charter-through Jets.com. Cost her $25,000 but it was the only way to get the Dane to Hawaii. He was just too large to fit into any of the commercial crates to fly there. NO airline would take him other than on a cargo basis. NetJets was another option she looked at but it was even more expensive.

There are also air cargo companies and an airline that specializes in transporting animals (although I don't know whether they would make arrangements to Hawaii). You would have to leave from the West Coast to make this work. http://www.companionair.com

The only other option I can see, and this would be a BIG IF. QM2-2/10/09-segment of the world cruise. 5/6 days from LA to Honolulu. You would most likely have to pay for the entire cruise, then just get off in Honolulu. $4500pp for the cheapest inside cabin. QM2 does have kennels, but they are generally only used for the transatlantics.

You do know about the quarantine/paperwork requirements??? TWO rabies vaccines, administered more than 90 days before entry, blood test sent to Kansas State University for blood serum/rabies immunity, microchipped.
#5
20,302 Posts
Joined Mar 2005
The QM2 is the only ship I know of that will accept animals other than service animals; the animals must stay in the onboard kennels but may be visited and exercised each day in the designated area.

As stated by the PP, there are a number of requirements that must be met in order to avoid the 120-day quarantine period. Here is a link explaining this in detail. (Even if you comply, there is still a 5-day quarantine period.)

http://www.hawaii.gov/hdoa/ai/aqs/info
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#7
3,271 Posts
Joined Jul 2007
Originally posted by above sea level cruiser
he was a certified companion dog for a woman who had psychological issues.

Try playing that card. They might buy it
First of all, companion animals are not service animals and so their people don't have the right to take them in public places. (Sounds like the cruiseline messed up on that one, or granted her special permission.)

Second of all, it is a crime to pass off a pet as a service animal.

Third of all, there is a big difference in the behaviour of a pet and that of a service animal - people will know the animal is just a pet because of this.

Service animals are animals who have been highly trained to do tasks that their disabled person cannot do/has a hard time doing for himself, such as a dog that guides a blind/visually impaired person or a dog that retrieves objects for and pulls the wheelchair of a paraplegic (and several other types of duties for those and other disabilities).


For the OP, I would suggest you look into a professional pet moving service, as the QM2 is the only cruise ship that takes pets (they stay in a kennel there - somebody on here took their cat in the kennel one time and wrote a blog about it, so do a search for that if you're interested) and I believe it costs extra for each pet. Ask your vet, local pet store, trainer, dog-owning friends, etc. for recommendations or do a Web search to find such companies.

Somebody has already given you the info. on the quarantine/how to lessen or avoid it, so be sure to check that out and call Hawaii if you have any questions.

Yes, moving them there will be expensive (the required vet work itself is also expensive, as it may cost you $200+ per dog) - but everything in Hawaii is extra expensive from the mainland, so this will be the start of your getting used to it! Good luck!
#8
Marietta, OK (south central)
287 Posts
Joined Nov 2006
OP was probably confused about the "certified companion dog" statement. Not all service animals are for the blind, deaf or those with visable handicaps. There are phychiatric, medical alert and medical response dogs as well. I lost my "companion" this spring - we did a lot of educating about how a Jack Russell Terrier could be a service dog. She was a super grounding influence, alerted me to upcoming seizures and could "find dad" (my husband) just about anywhere we happened to be as long as no one picked up the dog on a "mission" with the "Do Not Touch" vest on. I now have a new dog that we are training, and she is very good at alerting in a controlled situation (at home), but still gets distracted when in public so most of her public appearances are at horse shows and local places where they knew Daisy and know that Nova is "in training".

You might want to contact the airlines about letting the dogs travel in the cabin, if they are well behaved. I know people who travel a lot with their show dogs and have heard of them letting a border collie travel in the cabin (I think she bought him a seat!). If not, it's not that stressful for a crate trained dog to travel as air cargo. Do the VIP or Priority Pet. They are put in a special, pressurized compartment that is accessable from the passenger cabin during flight. (if there is a problem they might even ask you to come down to where your dog is, if you are on the plane) We have had serveral dogs flown all over the country and have never had a problem. If you do it right, the dog is actually in his travel crate for less time than the passengers are on the plane! Northwest, US Air, Delta, American are all experienced with flying pets and do a very good job for the most part. The key is to get a direct flight if at all possible and ask someone to check on your pet often. I am a pest to the airline when I'm flying a dog and it is out of my sight!
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#9
3,271 Posts
Joined Jul 2007
Originally posted by Marietta
OP was probably confused about the "certified companion dog" statement. Not all service animals are for the blind, deaf or those with visable handicaps. There are phychiatric, medical alert and medical response dogs as well.
True, but there are also "companion dogs", which are not service dogs but are for home use (and to pet-friendly places, of course). They aren't trained to do tasks for their humans, which is why they aren't service dogs. There are also trained service dogs that ppl use mostly at home, but if those dogs are trained to behave in public, they could also be used in public places if/when the person needs it, such as a hotel or cruise ship where pets (and companion dogs) aren't normally allowed.

Originally posted by Marietta
I lost my "companion" this spring - we did a lot of educating about how a Jack Russell Terrier could be a service dog. She was a super grounding influence, alerted me to upcoming seizures and could "find dad" (my husband) just about anywhere we happened to be as long as no one picked up the dog on a "mission" with the "Do Not Touch" vest on. I now have a new dog that we are training, and she is very good at alerting in a controlled situation (at home), but still gets distracted when in public so most of her public appearances are at horse shows and local places where they knew Daisy and know that Nova is "in training".
You should come on over to the Disabilities board on here - we've got a nice, long thread about cruising with a service dog going. The more the merrier!

Originally posted by Marietta
The key is to get a direct flight if at all possible and ask someone to check on your pet often. I am a pest to the airline when I'm flying a dog and it is out of my sight!
All animals (incl. service dogs) going to Hawaii MUST be flown into the big island, as that is the only place the inspection/quarantine stuff happens. Once the animal has been inspected and/or quarantined, then it may be moved between the islands however you wish. So, if the OP isn't moving to the big island, a direct flight to that island isn't possible.
#10
Honolulu, HI
1,695 Posts
Joined Feb 2007
Originally posted by Quampapetet
All animals (incl. service dogs) going to Hawaii MUST be flown into the big island, as that is the only place the inspection/quarantine stuff happens. Once the animal has been inspected and/or quarantined, then it may be moved between the islands however you wish. So, if the OP isn't moving to the big island, a direct flight to that island isn't possible.
Not to be too picky, but I think you mean Oahu (where Honolulu is) as opposed to the Big Island (Hawaii)(where Kona and Hilo are).
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#11
3,271 Posts
Joined Jul 2007
I have no idea - I've never been to Hawaii so don't know the difference between the islands.

Checked - "THE HONOLULU INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT ON THE ISLAND OF OAHU IS THE ONLY PORT OF ENTRY FOR ALL DOGS AND CATS ENTERING HAWAII. THIS INCLUDES GUIDE DOGS AND SERVICE DOGS."

So, whichever island Oahu is, that's the one all dogs and cats have to enter Hawaii through.
#12
Cumberland Plateau, TN
1,072 Posts
Joined Jul 2004
While cruise lines may not want to transport pets, how about a freighter cruise? A cruise from the west coast to HI should not have an quarantine issue as they probably would not be making international stops. Think about it, freighters and cargo planes transport animals all the time. And they probably don't care if you walk around the deck of a freighter with your dog.
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#13
Little Rock, Arkansas
37,374 Posts
Joined Mar 2005
No matter which way they go to Hawaii, they'll still have quarantine issues.
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#14
Arizona/Missouri
14,848 Posts
Joined Feb 2002
Originally posted by hvsteve1
While cruise lines may not want to transport pets, how about a freighter cruise? A cruise from the west coast to HI should not have an quarantine issue as they probably would not be making international stops. Think about it, freighters and cargo planes transport animals all the time. And they probably don't care if you walk around the deck of a freighter with your dog.
NO FREIGHTER cruises to/from the West Coast to Hawaii that take passengers anymore. APL (American President Lines) is the prime carrier for Hawaiian freight from the West Coast. They quit taking passengers about 18 years ago.

And ANY animal (including animals that were born and raised in Hawaii, have been to the mainland or other places) MUST clear the quarantine procedures. Has absolutely nothing to do with international stops-has to do with Hawaii NEVER having a case a rabies and they don't want even a hint of rabies.

I used to live in Hawaii in the 70's, had a Samoyed born and raised in Honolulu. The two times I took the dog home to LA, I had to quarantine the dog. I finally decided a dog sitter/kennel was less stressful and cheaper than the quarantine. It all has to do with rabies.