Bringing dogs into India through Chennai Airport

#1 Apr 18th, 2017, 03:22
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  • not_ally is offline
#1
Hello all,

I will be moving to India for a couple of years in a couple of months. I will be bringing my two dogs (both mixed breed/rescues, one a tiny terrier mix, one a medium size Spaniel mix). I have spent a number of hours reading all the posts in the pet care forum, as well as all the ones (I think) relevant to transporting pets in India, so no need to link to them, nor to talk about the downside (I am of Indian descent, have spent quite a bit of time living in and visiting India, and am aware of the potential problems involved in taking and keeping my dogs there), as I have weighed the factors carefully and decided that it is best that we are not separated.

At this point I think I am up to speed on what I will need to do to get them into the country with respect to forms/certifications/flights/Indian government requirements. Both dogs will travel in the cabin, one as an emotional support animal with me, the other one (she is small enough to go under the seat as required by the airline), will be carried by my nephew, who is traveling with me.

My issue: Kerala will be my final destination, but I do not want to have to take any Indian airlines, which will not allow dogs to travel in cabin, and which I do not trust to transport animals as cargo. The nearest I can get to Kerala via Lufthansa (the airline I want to take, Lufthansa and KLM are supposed to be the best with dogs) is Chennai. I will have a car pick me up there and drive back to Kerala, but I wanted to (a) confirm that I could fly into Chennai with the dogs and do the India intake there, ie; that there is an office for it; (b) the government office where the intake check would be done was at the airport or somewhere else; and (c) if it was relatively easy to get through the Chennai arrival part with dog/s.

Many thanks for any advice/insight.
#2 Apr 18th, 2017, 06:27
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  • sasibeera is offline
#2
I just posted yesterday about my move to India from SFO with my cat in Lufthansa. My final destination is in AP. I am debating between B'lore and Chennai as my port of entry, mainly from the point of view of clearance at the airport and thereafter without any hassles.

Here are the answers to your queries to the best of my knowledge:
a. Your dogs need to be cleared at the airport by customs after your produce the NOC to them
b. You would have to talk your dogs to the AQCS office the next day to obtain a provisional clearance, which is issued after verification of your reports and the physical health of your pets. In chennai this office is not at the airport.
c. Not sure.
#3 Apr 18th, 2017, 08:34
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  • not_ally is offline
#3
Sasibeera, thanks so much. I figured I would have to provide the NOC at the airport, but someone had made reference to leaving an airport (I think Mumbai) and having to go somewhere else. It is really, really helpful to know that I will have to stay in Chennai for at least a day for the provisional clearance, I can start looking for a hotel that takes dogs, that will probably be a pain to find. You are so lucky to be in SF! I am going to have to figure out a way to get up there (from LA) to start the trip if I use Lufthansa, I might have to rent a car as I can't leave mine there.

Man, these little buggers are complicating things! They are worth every second and penny of the cost, though. They make me so happy, I can't imagine being without them.
#4 Apr 18th, 2017, 14:52
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  • Nick-H is offline
#4
When are you coming?
I'd be concerned about flying an animal into Chennai in the summer. Temperatures have now touched 40C. Wouldn't want to risk the animal being left out in the sun.

Actually, even out of the sun, these temperatures are dangerous to both beast and man.

I have heard of very careless treatment of incoming animals. I'm sure you'll have read everything, good and bad, on this site at least.

Having said that, my experience of helping to ship a dog out of chennai is that the people were helpful and kind.
~
Life gets aadhar every day.
.
Last edited by Nick-H; Apr 19th, 2017 at 00:05..
#5 Apr 18th, 2017, 16:08
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  • MartijnInIndia is offline
#5
Although not strictly relevant, since you are taking the dogs by car to Kerala, we did manage to get our Pekinese to travel in the cabin on Indian Airlines from Chennai to Trivandrum. But we knew the pilot of that flight. It was still a lot of hassle since security wasn't aware and eventually the pilot had to come out of the cockpit to help guide the lady and our doggie into the plane. Caused a delay of more than 30 minutes and a lot of passengers looking angry at our little pet :-(
#6 Apr 18th, 2017, 22:22
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#6
Thank you, Nick and Martijn,

Re the temperature, I know it is an issue, but am hoping that since they will be traveling in cabin rather than in the animal holding areas, the rules do not apply in the same way (ie; the travel cut off temps, which we will be in danger of abridging, I think, as we will be traveling at some point in June or July depending on when OICs come through). Thanks for flagging that, though, I do need to check on it. I too have heard of very scary treatment of animals and cannot contemplate that with mine. I don't know what I would do if they could not fly in cabin, as I really need to get to India (sick dad, need to spend time with him.)

Martijn, I think some of the Indian Airlines (maybe AI?) do allow pets in cabin, but there is a size cut-off (their policy does not make mention of exceptions for ESA's), so my medium size dog would have to fly in cargo, which will not work. My uncle is the Sr. VP in charge of cargo at Jet India, and did not seem that enthusiastic about the notion of doing that, which nixes it for me. I am also nervous about other passengers being pissed off at me, though, especially other Indians, whom I have not found to be that dog friendly generally. So I am just going to forge forward with the two of them and keep my fingers crossed that they behave. They usually are pretty good, but have never flown so not sure what to expect.

Regarding first time pet flyers: will their ears hurt on ascent/descent like babies' ears do? Is there anything to do about that if so? Also, are dogs typically nervous about flying (like, eg, with thunder or fireworks, when Freddie immediately hides under the bed and does not come out until the tamasha is over?) Was not sure about the noise, espec. on takeoff/descent.
#7 Apr 19th, 2017, 00:11
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  • Nick-H is offline
#7
Quote:
Re the temperature, I know it is an issue, but am hoping that since they will be traveling in cabin rather than in the animal holding areas, the rules do not apply in the same way
Oh, right... I forgot that. No being left in the sun waiting for clearance that doesn't happen then. I assume that if they travel with you in the cabin, they stay with you through the airport? Is that how it works?
Quote:
Regarding first time pet flyers: will their ears hurt on ascent/descent like babies' ears do?
Their ears are built the same as ours, so they probably suffer in the same way. And, as with babies, there isn't going to be a way to explain it to them.

But what does a dog do, on a plane, when it is desperate for toilet?
#8 Apr 19th, 2017, 06:04
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  • not_ally is offline
#8
I think if they are are booked in cabin you just take them with you through the airport, including security. I've found some links discussing the best way to do that, hopefully that part will be ok.

At least with babies you can give them a pacifier/dummy to help them pop their ears, I can't really find any guidance on dogs except to give them something to chew on.

Re the pooping, the flight I'm looking at has two stops, the longest of the three legs is 9.5 hours. I think they can both hold poops for that long, although the little one might have to pee in that time. I'm going to take super absorbent pads for her carrier, as well as wipes, poop bags and maybe diapers. Poor babies.
#9 Apr 19th, 2017, 13:32
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  • Nick-H is offline
#9
Doggie Diapers... That's a good idea!
#10 Apr 19th, 2017, 15:17
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#10
They have a lot to put up with in the name of love

The good thing is that they will have forgiven me as soon as they get off the plane. Would that humans were that forgiving!
#11 Nov 16th, 2018, 03:04
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  • reddyj is offline
#11
Hi not_ally,
I'm traveling from SFO to Bangalore but i know my option is to bring pet to Chennai. Can you please let me know which airlines did you choose to make your booking? I'm trying Lufthansa and they are saying they cannot ship big dog from frankfurt to india as its a small flight. Tried Qatar as well. Any other option as pet being transported as excessive baggage?
#12 Jan 20th, 2019, 23:24
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  • baetens J is offline
#12

hi,

hello guys, can anyone answer my question here, were moving to Auroville india by April for good, and we have 4cats and 1 micro chihuahua the tiny one. are they allow to Chennai airport??? were from the Philippines and we want to bring our pets to India. please guys answer me. thank you so much.

jecka.
#13 Jan 21st, 2019, 15:09
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  • redninja is offline
#13
There are lots of related threads on this topic, with links to govt departments, paperwork requirements, veterinary certification , approved transport receptacles and the various costs and fees ( itís often not cheap), look at the bottom of this page for a start.
#14 Jan 21st, 2019, 15:44
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  • redninja is offline
#14
I guess you have done your homework, i have always thought pets were actively discouraged in Auroville.

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