How to move to the UK with a cat ⦁ 點樣同貓貓移民

MeowWu the Cat who recently moved from Hong Kong to the UK

Helen Cheung and her boyfriend care for three animals – one cat and two bunnies. When she decided to move to Leeds with her boyfriend, they used pet relocation companies to bring the pets over from Hong Kong. Helen shares with us how she arranged for the immigration of Meow-Wu – a beloved black and white street cat rescued by her two years ago. Helen arrived at Heathrow airport with Meow-Wu on the same flight in mid October.

We wanted to go to Australia at the start because my boyfriend had been planning to study there, but it is impossible to bring rabbits to Australia. Instead we decided to come to the UK where rabbits are allowed and my boyfriend could get a study visa. The first thing I did was to find a pet relocation company.

Pet relocation company ⦁ 寵物移民公司

This is not essential, but I recommend it because we as humans have too much to worry about our own move!

I found a pet relocation company that I liked. It costs $35,000 to bring Meow-Wu to the UK.  ⦁ 「我係用寵物移民公司嘅,帶喵嗚去英國總共用咗三萬五港紙。」

Vet’s tests ⦁ 見獸醫

Next, I arranged a vet appointment via the relocation company. This is to give the cat a microchip, vaccines, boosters, and blood tests etc.

The vet has a pressure chamber that simulates cabin pressure. We put Meow-Wu in it to test his reaction to flying with changing pressure.  ⦁ 「移民公司安排嘅獸醫診所裏面有一個氣壓倉,我哋擺喵嗚入去測試佢對氣壓改變有乜嘢反應,先決定俾唔俾佢飛。」

His street life clearly taught him well. Meow-Wu rested the whole time in the chamber. After the tests, documents for the pet were arranged.

Flights ⦁ 訂機票及預備上機

I booked my flights one month before I arranged Meow-Wu’s move. Later, I gave the relocation company my flight details and they reserved a spot on the same flight for Meow-Wu. On the day we checked in, we went to the terminal to weigh Meow-Wu before we finalised and paid for his flight. ⦁ 「搵移民公司前嘅一個月我已經訂咗機票。我係之後比移民公司我嘅航班資料,佢哋再幫喵嗚電話預約寵物機位。Check in 當日去貨運站對文件,對晶片,磅重,之後即場買機票。」

Next, I had to order an airline-approved cat carrier. I measured the cat’s size and the company bought one for me. This was around HK$1,000. I bought food and water cups designed for airplanes myself – they are easy to get from pet shops in Hong Kong.

Before the flight, Meow-Wu visited the vet one last time to have his heart rate and a few other things checked.

On departure day, I put Meow-Wu in his cat carrier. You can put the pet’s favourite clothes or items with familiar smells in the carrier to help it relax. ⦁ 「飛嗰日,我要將喵嗚擺喺個飛機籠度先交比移民公司。可以將喵喵最鍾意嘅公仔或衣物放埋入飛機籠,等佢飛嘅時候有熟悉嘅味道,令到佢情緒唔會太緊張。」

The company picked Meow-Wu up before I set off for the airport myself.

Pick-up ⦁ 迎接主子

Typically, four or five hours after you landed, you will receive a call about your pet being ready to leave the airport. Hong Kongers should remember to buy a sim card that can be used the moment you land! ⦁「正常嚟講,到英國後四至五個鐘,就會收到電話可以接寵物。香港人記得要預備好電話 SIM 卡到埗嘅時候用。」

I brought his cat litter tray from Hong Kong. I didn’t clean it, hoping the smell will help Meow-Wu in a new environment. He didn’t do a number two for 3 or 4 days. I’m glad I bought the probiotic powder he used in Hong Kong with me. It did the trick. ⦁「我帶咗益生菌,預備佢有便秘時俾佢食。」

Becoming a British cat ⦁  點樣做隻英國貓

I brought some of Meow-Wu’s wet food and snacks to the UK. My plan is to introduce new brands that are available in the UK day by day to help him switch. By the way, please remember many Japanese brands we have in Hong Kong are unavailable in the UK, or are extremely expensive. The dry food that he is on is available in the UK though, and in fact much cheaper! ⦁ 「我帶咗喵嗚最鍾意食嘅肉泥,因為呢邊買日本牌子比香港貴。平時食開嘅罐罐,英國冇得賣,唯有幫佢轉罐頭。而乾糧香港食開嘅牌子,英國有得賣,仲比香港平。」

Basic Costs ⦁ 基本洗費

Helen’s basic costs were HK$33,710 (~£3,350) = Pet Relocation Company Cost $13,548 + Flight for Meow-Wu $13,544 + Clearance Fee $5,630 + Cat Carrier for Flight $988

⦁ Helen 基本洗費係 HK$33,710 (~£3,350) = 移民公司費用 $13,548 + 喵嗚機票 $13,544 + 清關費 $5,630 + 飛機籠 $988

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