Figuring This Doggone Thing Out


Annie as a pup (left) with her 'big' brother Alfie

Annie as a pup (left) with her ‘big’ brother Alfie

One of the first questions people ask us is, “What are you going to do with the dogs?” And those who know us best know that, OF COURSE we’re taking them both with us. Almost everything we do is all about the dogs…

After spending hours and hours of doing research about moving abroad with dogs and well over two hours at the veterinary, I think I finally know what is expected from us to move with our two dogs, Annie and Alfie. The paper work is very, well, European—all 32 pages of it, with an obscene number of accompanying forms, details, charts, examples, and translations.

I think I’ve found the best link of all at:

The requirements SEEM fairly straightforward for our older dogs:

1) they need to be microchipped

2) they need to be up to date on Rabies vaccination

3) they need a passport/ vet health certificate

Now to get the dogs crate trained! We have the crates and have been encouraging the dogs to dine in them sans the tops, so they’re eating in, like, a Hollywood Bowl, or so I tell them! Time is getting short, so I’ve hired a trainer to come and hopefully charm them into loving the crates. I found this handy site detailing how to measure your dog for the correct crate size:

We are intentionally traveling direct with the dogs from San Francisco to Frankfurt, so there are no dangerous layovers. And we’ve heard from other travelers that Lufthansa has the best handling procedures out there. If you’re interested, here are Lufthansa’s guidelines:

Luckily, there is no quarantine coming from the States, so we’ll be with our babies after the 11 hour traumatic flight. Gerd, our good (brave) friend who lives in Frankfurt, is picking the four of us up (including the two crates) and is driving us to Bad Breisig to get us settled in. Thank you, Gerdchen!

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5 Responses to Figuring This Doggone Thing Out

  1. Connie says:

    You are so organized. Are you able to rest well at night? Can you shut your brains off with so much happening in such a short time? Love reading your blog!

    • says:

      Yep. SO much to think about. And every little decision is a totally new process, with all the research and guesswork that goes along with it. And we’re still in the US and speaking English!!!

      With the countdown now at a little over 7 weeks, the anxiety is setting in a bit. But I work out hard so I can burn off some of the ‘panic’ and sleep at night!

  2. Gabriele says:

    Wolfgang and I are looking forward to seeing you both here in Good Old Europe.
    Love your blog!!

  3. Marsha Wick says:

    Hi Cindy,

    I am Steve Wicks wife and if you don’t know Steve works with your husband. Anway, he was showing me your blog and I think it is SO exciting what you are doing! We have 3 years until our kids are out of the house at least for while in college and we would love to do something similar. Not sure where we would want to live, we need to travel and see some places first! I was curious about your babies though, will they fly in their crates under your seat or under the plane? Our little guy would probably freak out and we would need to buy him a 1st class ticket so he could sit with me! Did the vet recommend sedating them? I have a friend who has all natural “treats” for her dog when he goes to the groomers because he gets very nervous. If we ever get to the point of doing something like this it would be good to know how to go about it. Thanks for sharing your journey!


    • Cindy Loevenich says:

      So nice to hear from you, Marsha! Our babies have to be in the belly of the plane. I believe the maximum weight you can bring on board is around 20 pounds for the dog and the crate. I’m sure we’ll hear Annie wailing through the floorboards when everyone is trying to sleep!!! Vets don’t normally recommend sedation because it lowers their body temperature and is very dangerous for the animals. But other folks have said that a little Benadryl goes a long way in helping them feel drowsy and sleep away the trip. We may give the Beny a try before we go to see what reaction they have…the jury’s still out on this one.

      Keep in touch!!!

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