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Cozumel Here We Come!


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#1 marea

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Posted 20 November 2010 - 01:53 PM

Hello! My husband, our golden retriever and I will be coming to Cozumel for 6 months starting December 2. We have been wanting to do this for such a long time and I can't believe it's actually happening! If anyone has any advice about what to bring (or not bring), or any other helpful tips to make our transition easier, we'd love to hear from you! Hopefully we'll get a chance to actually meet some of you face to face, too. Brian is a chef and homebuilder, I am an orthopedic physical therapist. If you have any pain/strain/post-surgical issues or questions, I'd be happy to work with you while I'm there. Thanks in advance for any tips. 12 days and counting!
Mary
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#2 CZMDM

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Posted 20 November 2010 - 03:16 PM

Per your dog:

1) Make sure he is in check in and is not shipped air freight.

2) The dog has to have a medical statement from a vet showing the dog is healthy and is current on his shots. The document cannot be more than 2 weeks old. They might have changed the rule that the rabies cert has to be very recent as well, so you might want to check that. The HS might know, but they mostly export dogs and don't import them.

3) You must bring both Heartguard and Frontline to give/apply to your pet in front of a customs agent.

Failure to comply with any of the above will result in the dog being held up in customs. If it is shipped as freight there will be an outrageous fee to import the dog and the dog will be placed where you are not allowed to visit it. If this happens do not count on the aduana to water your dog. If you do not have the Heartguard and Frontline the dog will be held in customs until you get a vet to show up and give/apply the medicine.

You may already be aware of this but I would hate to see you show up unprepared and see you seperated from you little buddy.

The Yucatan is famous for ticks, so be prepared for them.

Good luck. You're going to have a blast with your dog here with you on the island.
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#3 marea

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Posted 20 November 2010 - 04:14 PM

Wow, thanks, CZMDM, I had no idea on the Heartguard/Frontline application in the airport. I was prepared to bring them with us, but not to give it to him right then and there. I will have it on hand. Thanks, too, for the advice on check in vs freight, I'll make that clear with the airline. Since we're from Colorado, we've never had to deal with fleas or really ticks. Do the flea and tick collars offer sufficient protection? I really do appreciate that you took the time to share this information. It would break my heart to have my dog go through more than necessary because I was unprepared. Jake, the dog, is so excited to see the ocean for the first time!
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#4 Charles

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Posted 20 November 2010 - 04:51 PM

Make certain you know all the regulations as they keep adding more. I believe proof of deworming, free of internal parasite is a new one. Here's part of a post made by Carey in August....


You will have to stop in before you clear customs at the office of animal and agricultural inspection and provide them with the following proofs:

Vaccination certificate showing a rabies shot was administered within one year -- doesn't matter if you got a 3 year booster two years ago. It must have been administered within on year. Also need statement that the dog has been dewormed and is free of both internal and external parasites. And you need to add the words Frontline and Cardomec (heartworm) to the meds/vaccination documents also.

So: rabies within the year, frontline and heartworm meds administered, deworming done.

Letter from your US vet stating pet is healthy but they won't be able to read this in Mexico most likely. Attached the vaccination records to which you must have your vet add all that information I gave you above. Heed my words well or you will be very sorry. I bring my dog in and out several times per year so I'm totally up on the requirements and without them, you'll sit in the airport a couple of hours waiting for a local vet to show up and readminister rabies, heartworm, frontline, etc.

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#5 marea

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Posted 21 November 2010 - 12:00 AM

Thank you too, Charles. I really want to make this as easy as possible for the dog. He's a nervous sort to begin with, so the less hassle the better. I really appreciate the warnings!
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#6 CZMDM

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Posted 21 November 2010 - 08:53 AM

We used to fly all over the Caribbean with one of our labs. It would be helpful to have a vet give you some doggie valium to calm the dog during his long day.

It's "Tick City" here. What we do is keep the garden sprayed for ticks. Frontline works, but the problem is the tick has to bite first to kill it. Some of my friends swear by the flea/tick collars. The only upside is the ticks we have here do not have lyme disease and they are very poor carriers of Erlichia.

I forgot about the deworming....very important.
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#7 Guest_pecosgirl_*

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Posted 21 November 2010 - 01:10 PM

I hope you have a lovely time after waiting so long for your trip. Best wishes for Doggie! Have you read extensively from this file (I Want to Move to Cozumel) and others? The more info you read and the more questions you ask the better. My tips are: keep a list of important island numbers in your wallet for emergencies. Visit a vet (meet and greet) before an emergency arises...also contact the Humane Society. Try to learn as much Spanish as possible. Don't trust everyone you meet.
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#8 marea

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Posted 21 November 2010 - 11:41 PM

pecosgirl, I have a feeling all of your suggestions have stories behind them. :) I have been a lurker on this board for a while and have learned a lot, but these specific responses really have helped me. Thanks to you all! I'm sure there are questions I haven't even thought of yet, but I feel more prepared already. 10 days!
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#9 Coz2wonder

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Posted 22 November 2010 - 12:36 PM

The Vet we all know and love...Julio.

Julio did start out at the HS here, and grew into a well respected, and loved Vet. hE ALSO DOES HOUSECALLS!

go online, capture his number, and if you have problems when you arrive, call him. But, make contact first before you arrive and let him know when you will be arriving.

MVZ. Julio César Gutiérrez Cetina.
"por la conciencia de la necesidad de servir"
Centro Médico Veterinario.
Cozumel, México.

www.cmvcozumel.com

Not sure what the reference to "Don't trust everyone you meet" from pecosgirl means. If I didn't trust people who posts here, why would I post and ask questions??? My motto on the important stuff...TRUST, BUT VERIFY".
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#10 marea

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Posted 22 November 2010 - 01:04 PM

Thank you, Coz2wonder! A good Vet forewarned of our arrival is a great idea.
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#11 Carey

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Posted 22 November 2010 - 03:27 PM

I've brought my toy poodle in and out of Cozumel three or four times this year alone. This is in-cabin so treated as personal luggage. What is required when you come down -- I'd get one of those official-looking International Health certificate forms from your vet. They cost a little more but the Mexicans love their paper and official forms. Even if they can't read them.

The only things they care about seeing on your papers are the following:

#1. Proof that a rabies shot was administered within one year of your travel. Best is if you actually have the sticker off the serum bottle with the date on it.

#2. They want to also see that your dog is free of both internal and external parasites. So if the form you get from your vet doesn't state that they have tested negative for internal and external parasites, have them add that. What I do is carry a copy of his health records. They understand Deworm and the brandname Nemex and then have it be a month or less before your travel dates.

Have them state dog is being treated for heartworm and use the word HeartGard as the med as the official at the airport also recognizes that brand.

Also include that they are being treated for external parasites with Frontline Plus which, again, they understand.

It's a good idea, however, to have the frontline and heartworm handy just in case they decide to hassle you about your papers.

Your dog will have to come in as personal luggage -- not as a QuikPak animal shipment on Continental. Quikpak automatically is considered cargo and you will have to deal with the nightmare and rip off of an aduana. Question your carrier most carefully -- in fact, call the animal/agri people for your airline and at the airport from which you will be leaving and ascertain that your pet is going to be unloaded onto the luggage carousel just like, say, a surfboard, and not treated as cargo.

Last I checked Continental was only doing cargo on below deck animals and they are the biggest carrier in here. Delta still flies I believe and Frontier in high season I think. United might have different rules. Hard to say as they continue their merger. US Airways still flies in in high season, don't they?

If you can't get the answer you want from an airline that flies direct to Cozumel, look into Cancun. Last I heard American was flying below deck pets in during the winter and there will be others that fly into Cancun. You will just have to take a taxi van down from the airport. They will take the dog in its kennel on the ferry but put it outside on the back deck where you can sit with it.

If you can bring the dog into Cozumel as personal luggage, the routine is to present your papers to the agricultural inspection office which is about the 3rd door to your left right after you exit immigration where you show your passport and get your entry visa. Say "Tengo un mascota" TANG-oh oon-ah mah-SCOH-tah. I have a pet and they will direct you to the right office. Have one of you watching for the dog to come in on the carousel while the other gets the papers started then haul the dog over to the office.

Last go round they made me take him out and get him weighed for lord's sake but prolly won't do that for a giant dog. But they might decide to spray inside his kennel after you take him out. For what reason it is difficult to fathom besides boredom.

Just keep smiling. If it's a young somewhat frail looking man, you've got Achilles. He's very nice but he also follows the letter of the law. And sometimes, it seems to me, then some.
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#12 Guest_pecosgirl_*

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Posted 22 November 2010 - 04:32 PM

I didn't mean trusting people on this board...or not. I meant people you might meet on the island...most of whom are lovely..but it only takes one to cause you some serious problems.
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#13 nauticab

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Posted 22 November 2010 - 10:12 PM

julio's numbers:
clinic: 987 872 7310
cel: 044 987 876 0644
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#14 Carey

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Posted 23 November 2010 - 06:49 AM

julio's numbers:
clinic: 987 872 7310
cel: 044 987 876 0644

Julio's email is jccmv72@hotmail.com. He will answer your email usually within 24 hours and provided you write to him in Spanish. This is how I communicate with him. I have a wonderful translation program called Word Magic. It's expensive -- probably like $300 now. But I have found it to be immensely useful for the kind of day to day communication that is necessary in Spanish and if you live here full time. Can't recommend it highly enough. Very interactive so you can correct totally wrong automatic translations by doing things like changing the verb to a noun. Most translation programs don't do this.

Anyway, I'm off the track here. But if you're not pretty fluent in Spanish, your best bet for contacting Julio in advance and from the US is going to be via email. In decent Spanish.
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#15 marea

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Posted 24 November 2010 - 12:16 PM

Thanks for the advice. I have written Julio in my 5th grade Spanish and he has already replied. I can't thank you all enough for your great advice. Happy Thanksgiving to you all! Mary
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#16 Coz2wonder

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Posted 24 November 2010 - 01:24 PM

wish I had this information when I brought my two Corgi's in.

Having Julio on speed dial would have been great.

If your pup ends up in the customs hell...keep about $100-$150 usd's in $10 dollar bills, just incase you need to spring him from dogie jail.

Keep a lease with you.

I just LOVE Goldens...that face is to die for.
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#17 Ron

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Posted 26 November 2010 - 02:45 PM

So if you have a 8wk old puppy he is to young for his Rabbie shot the pup will have problems coming in to the country correct?

I found the answer if he is to young for the Rabbie shot he can come in without it and get it when he is old enough.

Ron
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#18 CZMDM

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Posted 27 November 2010 - 07:54 AM

So if you have a 8wk old puppy he is to young for his Rabbie shot the pup will have problems coming in to the country correct?

I found the answer if he is to young for the Rabbie shot he can come in without it and get it when he is old enough.

Ron


Ron I don't doubt you in the least, but I would not count on the customs agent knowing that fact.
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#19 Carey

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Posted 27 November 2010 - 11:36 AM

Ron I don't doubt you in the least, but I would not count on the customs agent knowing that fact.

I totally agree with Mike. I would chance that in a million years. Only way that would work would be if you contact Julio the vet via email in Spanish in advance and discuss it with him and arrange, if necessary, for him to meet you at the airport. But even then if the agi inspector has it in his head for whatever reason that the puppy should have had a rabies shot, neither you nor Julio will be able to convince him otherwise.

I would wait until the puppy is old enough for his first shot before bringing him down.
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#20 marea

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Posted 03 December 2010 - 08:04 AM

Hey Everyone! I just wanted to let you know that we all arrived on the island safe, sound and happy yesterday. Aquiles at the airport told me everything went so smoothly because I was so well prepared with my documents for Jake, our dog. I was so well prepared because of all your replies to my post, so THANK YOU!! Hopefully at some point I will meet some of you in person and be able to thank you properly, with a beer or margarita. :) Thanks again!
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