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Home Forums HOUSE RABBIT Q & A International travel with rabbits

This topic contains 11sd replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by  Q8bunny 2 years, 3 months ago.

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    Hi everyone,

    I’m hoping somewhere out there, someone can help us and share their experience travelling internationally with rabbits. I’ve been searching the web and calling pet transporters and airlines to no avail. 

    We currently live in Canberra, Australia, and are considering moving to Eugene, Oregon. My partner has been offered a job there but it will be a deal breaker if we cannot take my two babies, Artemis and Hera, with us. 

    The journey from Canberra to Eugene takes 21 – 26 hours and involves 2 to 3 stopovers. Due to Australian laws they cannot be in the cabin with us till we land in America (excluding Hawaii). I’m so concerned that they would not be able to survive such a long flight. My fears are compounded by the possibility the airline could screw up – like what happened with poor Simone the bunny.


    Has anyone flown with their rabbit on such a long flight? If so, which airlines did you use? 

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    Wow, big decision! I would have difficulty having my rabbits not in cabin with me, to be honest. But I don’t really know what facilities are like in cargo for animals. Do the airlines give tours? Do they house animals like rabbits in separate area to cats and dogs?

    Maybe get in touch with JetPet and see if they have specific advice regarding rabbits.

    Would the move be long term? Im pretty sure you would not be able to bring the rabbits back into Australia had you decided to move back. So if you do take them, they would need live out rest of their lives in the US.

    Sorry I can’t be of more help!



    I was also going to suggest contacting JetPets. And Jersey took the other words right out of my mouth regarding the length of your stay and not being able to bring your bunnies back to Australia if it was only a short term move.

    I’m fairly sure there are air conditioned compartments in cargo for animals, but you would probably have to check with individual airlines.

    Also, I can’t speak for Eugene, but I’ve been to Medford, Oregon (right near the southern border with California) and it is absolutely gorgeous. Out of all the very few places I’ve been in the US, I could see myself living in Oregon. Your buns are gorgeous by the way, love their names. I wish I could be more help to your situation.



    The picture you posted is simply beautiful.

    I’ll be in a similar situation next June. I’ve contacted a Canadian pet relocation company with (reportedly) a good track record to help me move my little guy from the Middle East. I’m not giving up on begging for an exception for in-cabin travel, but chances are it’ll be cargo with Lufthansa – although I’m also on a waiting list for an empty-leg flight on a private jet.

    Ultimately, it’s a horrible decision to have to make due to the inevitable risk involved. Going without bunbun is simply inconcievable and the trip is necessarily way too friggin long.



    Thanks Its one of the few occasions I could capture Artemis (white bunbun) being affectionate and licking Hera (grey bunbun). Normally Hera gives all the licks and love. 

    How long will your flight be? 



    My buns are all named after Greek gods and are treated as such, except when it comes to cutting their nails. They unfortunately don’t get a say in that.

    My partner’s contract is for 6 years with a possibility of extension and the bunnies are already 4 plus. Ideally, we wouldn’t move again but if there were any changes we’d move to a bunny friendly country.

    I wish the Australian government spent more money restricting the breeding and sale of rabbits and more money educating people before they got rabbits on the following:t (1) the Australian government will continue to release new strains of viruses to kill your rabbit ( some that ‘mysteriously get into the country and for which there is no vaccine); (2) the government will not allow you to vaccine your rabbit against myxomatosis; (3) you can’t migrate to Queensland with your rabbit or you’ll be fined $30 000; (4) if your rabbit leaves the country, you will not be able to bring them back into the country.

    I understand the damage that wild rabbits have done to the ecosystem but surely there are more humane ways of addressing this and better ways of handling domestic rabbits. The feral cats in Australia are having nearly as much of an impact on the ecosystem, but imagine the outcry if the government did the same thing – release viruses, fines, ban importing etc.



    I tried last time with the flight from Perth to Canberra to get a tour with Qantas and they said ‘no’ and wouldn’t budge no matter how high up I tried to go.  

    The animal transporter companies seemed liked middle men  to me because they knew less than I did when I contacted them. They seemed to be a pick up and drop off service. They said they would pick up the animal from your house/location and then drop them off at the drop off area and then collect them on the other side and drop them off at your house/destination. They couldn’t tell at all how the cargo area looked, they couldn’t tell me how the transporter carrier would be secured, they couldn’t tell me if there would be someone to refill their water or food; they couldn’t tell me what would happen if there were other animals who were upset and howling and barking and scaring them.They just said that it was all up to the airline. Their job was just pick-up and drop-off. I think the worst thing they told me is that if something did happen to the buns that required a vet, there wasn’t anything they could do about it during flight or landing in most locations.

    I ended up doing the dropping off and picking up myself. I saw and went to as far as the animal transporter companies are allowed to go. It isn’t far at all. I didn’t think my nervous were going to make it on that 4 hour flight. Every little bit of turbulence made my heart stop. I couldn’t run fast enough when we landed to get to the buns and there they were. Eating hay. So chilled. You would have thought they had been on vacation, they were so relaxed. 

    The stay in the USA would be long term – more detail in post below. 

    I’ll get in contact with JetPets asap. Hopefully they’ve done this all before. 



    LOL That sounds like such an awesome outcome. I suspect it helps to have two buns traveling together. So would be more scary, I imagine… no one to cuddle.



    Hmm, while I could be wrong, what if they have a one animal per carrier rule? Might be worth checking that out.

    Let us know what JetPets says. Not that I have any intention of moving internationally, but it’s interesting information worth having all the same. Hopefully someone can give you more information and insight and help put your mind at ease.

    I also agree with you regarding the silly laws and restrictions, wild rabbits are here, domestic rabbits aren’t going to affect that so why ban their import. It’s not like they’re some exotic animal that could be captured in the illegal wildlife trade.



    According to the airlines they are. Super exotic.



    I’m thinking outside the box here…has anyone looked into getting a doctor’s note saying you need the rabbit in cabin for stress, anxiety or fear of flying? Not sure what the rules are there but in Canada you can register a bunny as an emotional support animal if a mental health care professional signs off on you needing it.
    If you are leaving the country anyways and it won’t impact your health records it mighr be worth a look. Just an Idea.



    I can only speak for flights from Kuwait to Canada, but here rabbit ESAs are not permitted by any of the airlines.


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