Pet’s Name, breed/type: Itty Bit, Cat
Moving From: Grapevine, TX
Moving To: Stuttgart, Germany
This is the story of how a Shelter in Dallas, TX and a pet shipping company in Austin, TX helped reunited a cat with "her dog", and the importance of Microchips. I apologize for the novel, but I thought in order to actually understand the weight of all this, a little background information is needed.
May of 2016 my then husband and I ended up with 4 kittens without a Mother. A bar owner found them in his attic and was going to "get rid of them". So we took them in. Four fluffy little black kittens. One of them was extremely small, couldn't see yet, and was not able to eat on her own. That little one was bottle-fed by me and enjoyed yelling at me if I dared to hold the bottle wrong. While a local shelter agreed to take the kittens in once they were eating solid food we made the decision to keep the little bottle-fed baby and to call her Itty Bit.
Itty Bit bonded to our dog right away and we laughed that the humans were mostly "can openers". She went on walks with us (and her dog) , chased the ball together with the dog, and was overall a happy independent cat with a tendency of rebellion.
When my then husband and I decided to separate we also decided for multiple reasons that he would keep the cat and I would take the dog. After a while, my now ex-husband did not take very good care Itty Bit. He planned on getting rid of her but wouldn't give her to me out of spite. For the past 2 years, I felt guilty for leaving the cat behind (I had moved to Germany with my new husband) and imagined the worst had happened to her.
At the beginning of January 2020, I received an email from the Grapevine Animal Shelter in Grapevine, TX telling me they had my cat. They had Itty Bit. I had moved to Germany in the meantime, my phone number that was registered on the chip was not active anymore, but luckily somebody decided to send me an email to see if I would answer. I was shocked!
With the help of "Pets with Passports" in Austin, Texas we managed to get her out of the shelter, board her and get all her papers ready and fly her to Germany. I'm so happy I called Elaine.
She was not a happy kitten about the flight but she arrived healthily and settled in fairly quick.
I do believe she remembers my dog because we already have been degraded to can openers. But he is everything to her.
I am beyond grateful for the Grapevine Animal Shelter and Pets with Passports. Both worked with me to get Itty Bit home and were very patient with me since I was all the way in Germany. Without them I would still be guilt-tripping myself and Itty Bit would have never seen her favorite dog again.
The moral of the story:
Microchips work when registered properly. :)
How many times have you moved (Internationally/Domestically) with your pet(s)? Is he/she an experienced world traveler or had he never even crossed state lines before? This was her first travel by plane.
What were your biggest questions for Pets with Passports? What were you most worried about when you first contacted Pets With Passports? Our unique situation was overall super stressful but Elaine's patience and quick responses helped me relax. She informed me about anything and everything.
How did you hear about PWP? I posted on a local Facebook page and Pets with Passports were recommended by a group member.
How did you decide to hire a professional pet moving service? Why did you pick PWP to help with the move? Seeing as we were already in Germany when we found out our cat was found we opted for a pet moving service since the cost would be the same as flying back and forth myself and it definitely saved a lot of stress.
How was your communication before and during the move with Pets with Passports? Elaine was super communicative.
What was the biggest surprise you encountered moving your pet(s) (paperwork, vaccines, customs, Titer test, length of prep time, etc)? There is a 21 day waiting period after the Rabies vaccination and there is a health certificate that was needed right before her flight. Elaine was super helpful and found a home sitter for Itty bit while she waited to fly to Germany.
How have your pets adjusted each time they have moved? What was the timeline like before they started acting comfortable in their new home?
It took her a while to figure out this was her new home and no one was going to leave her. She remembered our dog (and her best friend) right away though.
(Itty Bit and her doggo finally reunited and together again)