Here is a glossary of terms that might help in navigating the world of pet transport.
Acclimation Certificate = a document outlining temperatures that a pet can travel within that is not likely to result in health problems. Few airlines still require this document.
Airline = company that provides air transport. These companies include American Airlines, Delta, United Airlines, British Airways, KLM Air France, Lufthansa, Singapore Airlines, Emirates Airlines, Air Canada, Alaskan Airlines, Qantas, and about 3400 others around the world.
Airport = a facility used for the business of air transport, including passengers and cargo.
Air Waybill (AWB) = A bill of lading used to tender cargo shipments on an airline. This is the contract with the airline and outlines the details of a shipment. This is used for pet shipping but also inanimate objects in cargo.
Carrier = Airline
CITES = Convention for the International Trade of Endangered Species
CITES Permit = document issued by a government agency that authorizes the international movement of an endangered species
Consigner = person or company shipping a pet
Consignee = person or company receiving a shipped pet
CVED = Common Veterinary Entry Document. A term sometimes used for a veterinary certificate required for entry into a country in the european union such as the United Kingdom, Germany, Italy, or others.
Crate = Pet Travel Kennel
Customs Clearance = process to file paperwork with a customs office to obtain approval for an animal import
Direct Flight = trip that is handled by the same carrier from start to finish. All non-stop flights are direct. Not all direct flights are non-stop. For instance a trip from Dallas, TX to London United Kingdom on United Airlines would have a layover in Houston or Newark; this would be a direct flight. A trip that changed from United Airlines to Delta would be a non-direct flight; an interline transfer would be required.
Door to Door = pick up at your current home and deliver to your new home, almost anywhere in the world
Excess Baggage = classification of air cargo that is booked on a passenger ticket over and above the standard allotment. Pets transported in cargo on a passenger ticket is considered excess baggage.
Export = when a pet leaves a country destined for another country
FAVN = Fluorescent Antibody Virus Neutralization. This generally refers to a rabies blood titer test. This test is currently run at Kansas State University for civilians in the United States. Military personnel can have a rabies titer run at the US Army Veterinary Laboratory in San Antonio Texas
Freight = Cargo. May also refer to the price paid for cargo shipments
Health Certificate = A document used to notate an animals status in regards to meeting import requirements of a particular country and to reflect the animal’s infectious disease status.
IATA = International Air Transport Association
Import = entry of a pet into a foreign country
Import Permit = A document issued by a government giving permission to import a particular pet
Interline transfer = a transfer from a flight on one carrier to a flight on another carrier. I.E. Flight 1 is handled by KLM and flight 2 is handled by Lufthansa
IPATA = International Pet and Animal Transportation Association
ISO Microchip = International Standards Organization compliant microchip. This is the type of microchip used for most international pet travel needs. Unfortunately there are microchips used in the US that don’t comply with this standard mandating that some pets have more than one microchip placed. Make sure this is done before any vaccinations or export testing and documents.
Non-stop flight = trip that only includes one flight
Official Veterinarian = in the US this typically refers to a USDA employed veterinarian. Because of variable processes in different countries this term can be misused. Some documents use this term to refer to a USDA accredited veterinarian.
OK to Forward = a process that some airlines use to verify that a consignee will be present to receive a pet being shipped
Pet Passport = A booklet that contains information on a particular pet’s health including microchip, rabies vaccination, distemper/parvo/lepto (DHLP) vaccination, bordetella vaccination, feline herpes/calici/panleukopenia (FVRCP) vaccination, feline leukemia vaccination, internal and external parasite treatments.
Quarantine = a period spent by an animal in a government facility for observation for signs of infectious disease. This is done to prevent contagious diseases from entering the subject country.
Rabies Certificate = a document outlining the details of a rabies vaccination given to an animal
Rabies Titer Test = a test that evaluates the body’s circulating antibodies against the rabies virus. This test is required by many importing countries.
RNATT = Rabies Neutralizing Antibody Titer Test. This is one of several terms for a rabies blood titer test.
TSA = Transportation Security Administration. US based government agency tasked with protecting the transportation industry
TSA IAC = Transportation Security Administration Indirect Air Carrier. A type of shipper that has gone through a TSA certification program
USDA APHIS = United States Department of Agriculture Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service
USDA Accredited Veterinarian = a veterinarian in private practice that has been certified by the United States Department of Agriculture to perform tasks related to animal shipments and reportable diseases. This includes international health certificates.
USDA Endorsement = a process by which a USDA employed veterinarian reviews documents filled out by a USDA accredited veterinarian for accuracy and compliance with international import regulations.
USF&W = United States Fish and Wildlife Agency. A USF&W declaration is required for many CITES/exotic animals.