Sunday, June 2, 2013

The Big Move

It's the Queen's weekend this week and quite literally my weekend, though things haven't quite gone according to plan. The hoomans have been out since morning enjoying the long weekend with friends, leaving me stuck at home with Suarez.

I always get that duping feeling when the hoomans toss a bone treat just before they leave. By the time I get to the end of the bone and look up, they're gone. My fellow paw friends, I'm sure you get what I mean. Not too long ago, we were duped into taking an eleven hour flight. That must have been the longest eleven hours of my life. Throughout the flight, there were no meals served, despite constantly smelling food from the top of our "suite". Apparently some smart Aleck decided that they should be emergency meals and only be served during flight delays.

Emergency meal, one for me

One for Suarez
We were both given a bowl of water each and that was about it. We were not allowed to bring our own toys and the only inflight entertainment we got was admiring each other from across our seat.
I see you
You see me
We each had one set of hooman clothing in our cage, to remind ourselves of how we were duped into making the trip. Some newspapers and a towel completed the look of our "room".

To be fair, things could have been a lot worse. There could have been no water or meals at all (emergency or not). We could have been denied the luxury of the pair of hooman clothing that worked well to calm our nerves and instead be put through eleven hours of psychological trauma. We could have been lost in transit if not for the meticulous coordination of Peter, who runs Peter Pet Services and was engaged by the hoomans to manage our relocation to New Zealand. He had to react quickly to a last minute change in our flight timing.

Peter has been in the business for more than 25 years, having relocated pets from all over the world. He's got all the tricks in that bag of experience. As a person, Peter was responsible and easy to get along with. For a stranger, I really do quite like him. Prior to our flight, he twice brought us to the Agri-Food and Veterinarian Authority of Singapore (AVA) labs for our health checks. Those checks determined if we were fit to fly. Needless to say, we were flying fit.

The rest was a blur, especially after the eleven hour flight. I can vaguely remember someone picking us up from the airport and transporting us to a quarantine centre. Shado-Lans, it was called. We have since been told on many occasions how lucky we are to have undergone quarantine at Shado-Lans. Most pets flying into New Zealand would be sent to the main quarantine facility in Auckland. Shado-Lans is a lot smaller and hence a lot more personal to us. We were really lucky to find space at Shado-Lans as rooms are very limited. Kudos to the hoomans for making early reservations.

I'm not sure how the quarantine facility in Auckland looks like but this is how it was at Shado-Lans.

The dog suite at Shado-Lans
Suarez and I shared the suite and we can testify that it is exactly as shown in the picture. We stayed there for 10 days, as part of the New Zealand law for all pets relocating from Singapore.

In hindsight and all honesty, I can't say that I was thoroughly pleased with the entire move, though I can say that it could have been a lot worse if not for the good work of Peter and Shado-Lans. Listen hoomans, they bailed you out!

Keeping calm and moving forward,

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