How Puppies are Shipped Tips

Read these 7 How Puppies are Shipped Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Puppy tips and hundreds of other topics.

How Puppies are Shipped Tips has been rated 4.0 out of 5 based on 83 ratings and 3 user reviews.
Are there any options for shipping puppies when the breeder can't do it?

Shipping Puppies Using a Pet Transportation Service

You were searching for a puppy through and you found the perfect match. However, the breeder is hesitant to ship, either because the kennel is not located near an airport or because the breeder just has never done this before and is unsure about all the procedures involved. You'll have to fly out to the breeder's location, pick up the puppy and take it home. The trip will be costly and you'll still have to figure out all the ins and outs of shipping. Should you just give up and buy a puppy that isn't quite right for you and your family? Before you get too discouraged, there is another option. You can look into shipping puppies using a pet transportation service.

A pet transportation service can be used to handle the entire shipping process, from pick up at the breeder's kennel to delivery to your front door. You can also just have the service help you with part of the trip. For example, the service could pick the puppy up and deliver it to the airline, where it is shipped to your airport. From there, you could claim your puppy and take it home yourself.

Some of these transporters also offer consulting services. They'll help you figure out how to ship your puppy and recommend the best airline and plane flight, while you and the breeder do the actual driving to and from airports on both ends.

What can I do to avoid problems when shipping a puppy?

Avoid Problems With Shipping a Puppy

The thought of shipping a puppy can be a bit scary because there is no one sitting back in the cargo area with your new baby during the actual travel time. Amazingly enough, with all the potential problems, few puppies have a problem getting from point A to point B. However, it is a good idea to do all you can to minimize delays, mistakes and accidents. To do your best to be sure your puppy arrives happy and healthy, you should:

  • Ask the breeder to get a Bordetella vaccine for your puppy, even if it is not required. Usually, there is more than one dog being shipped at the same time and they don't all come from the same kennel. This means that there is a very real chance that an unvaccinated puppy could develop this annoying condition. While it is easily curable, who wants to have to put a new puppy through the trauma of a vet visit and daily medication when the whole thing could be prevented by one simple shot?
  • Request that the breeder double check to be sure the puppy is crated securely. Most airlines provide plastic ties to secure the door at all four corners. If it isn't required by the airline your breeder is using, this is still a smart idea, as sometimes a door can be jarred enough to pop open if it is simply latched.
  • Check to be sure food and water dishes are being provided and make sure the breeder attaches a supply of food to the outside of the kennel so the puppy can be fed and watered if the trip is a long one.
  • Ask that your phone number be written directly on the carrier in permanent marker in case the shipping information gets separated from the kennel.

Are there any tips on how to ship a puppy?

How to Ship a Puppy

You've been hearing that it is much easier to sell puppies when you offer shipping, since there are so many more potential customers to draw from. You weren't sure if it was the right option for you, but you've received several questions about shipping your puppies from potential buyers that have been checking out your litter on Now, you need to know how to ship a puppy so you can send your little guys to their new, loving homes. While it seems overwhelming at first, you can break the task down into simple steps.

  • First, you'll need to have your veterinarian give the puppy an exam so he or she can issue a health certificate. These certificates are only good for ten days, so don't take your puppies in until you have a commitment from the buyer and know you'll be shipping out within that time frame.
  • Next, you'll need a kennel. These are not the wire crates that puppies are crate trained with. Your local airline should have a list of approved kennels and will tell you what bedding, food and water, you should provide.
  • While you are finding out about kennel requirements, ask about shipping fees and other procedures.
  • Find out if the buyer will be paying shipping costs up front or if he or she will be paying COD.
  • Suggest that the buyer take advantage of insurance through the airline in case something goes wrong. Stress that once the puppy is in the hands of the airline personnel, you are not able to control what happens and are not responsible.
  • Ship your puppy out and follow up with the buyer to be sure it was picked up safely.

Are there any tips I should know about transporting puppies by air?

Transporting Puppies by Air

Transporting puppies by air is the most popular method of getting them from the breeder to their new owner when they are not bred locally. Although the list of rules and regulations that are given may seem endless, they have been created to keep your puppy safe during its journey to your home.

  • During hotter or colder weather, most airlines refuse to ship live animals for their safety. You may find that you cannot use airlines to ship your puppy during late Spring, Summer and early Fall months.
  • The breeder is not simply trying to make money on the puppy's kennel by requiring you to buy a specific model for shipping. Any puppy that is shipped will be required to have a secure kennel. This protects the puppy from escaping and gives proper ventilation. The kennel cannot be collapsible and must allow air to circulate from several spots. These regulations are important because of the way cargo holds are packed.
  • You will need to be sure the puppy is picked up in a timely fashion once it arrives. A long delay causes unnecessary stress on the puppy and could result in the puppy being returned to the breeder or a call to the local SPCA.

How are puppies shipped?

How Are Puppies Shipped?

Puppies aren't vases or art supplies, so when you contact a breeder and hear that he or she can ship the puppy to you, your first reaction is probably shock. Before you panic, get that picture of cardboard boxes and foam peanuts out of your mind! Shipping puppies is usually quite safe and any airlines or trucking companies that take live animals have procedures in place to be sure they arrive in good health. (If the poor dog gets motion sickness, happiness may not be an option!)

Airlines will ship puppies in the cargo compartment during mild weather. It sounds a bit callous and scary, but is actually fairly safe and comfortable for the puppy, especially if there is no need for a layover or cargo transfer.

If someone is traveling with a small dog, he or she can usually request that the airline allow the pet to be stowed under the passenger's seat in lieu of carry on luggage. This is probably the safest mode of air travel, but may be more expensive, since you will be paying for an airline ticket for the human and an additional fee for the pet.

A trucking company that specializes in transporting pets is another option. The trucks will carry as many as 60 puppies, dropping off and picking up dogs on a very carefully planned route that can cover as much as half of the United States in one long road trip.

Is transporting puppies by ground a good option?

Transporting Puppies by Ground

Transporting puppies by ground can be a great option if airports are not nearby or if the weather is too hot or too cold for air transport. If you find a breeder through and the breeder can't ship by air, you can still make your dream of pet ownership come true. To have a good experience with shipping puppies by ground, you should:

  • Ask your breeder for a health certificate. Airlines require health certificates and up to date vaccinations. Even if you use a trucking company that doesn't have this requirement, request that your breeder to follow the airlines' lead. Your puppy should get a Bordetella vaccine and should be current on its DHLPP shot schedule. Making sure your puppy is vaccinated properly protects it from germs it could come in contact with along the way.
  • Be sure the shipper has a good reputation and proper equipment. You want to be sure the puppy is safe and comfortable on its trip. Ask for references from previous customers who have shipped pets and check with the Better Business Bureau to be sure there aren't any complaints lodged about the company.
  • Consider paying the higher price of individual transport. While it is cheaper to hire a service that picks up 20 or more pets over an extended route, it is a long and stressful trip for your puppy.

How much does it cost to ship a puppy by air?

How Much Does it Cost to Ship a Puppy by Air?

You've decided on the perfect dog breed for your family, but there aren't any puppies locally. Luckily, you searched and found a breeder with a litter of puppies. You've talked to the breeder and are very comfortable with his or her philosophy and the photos of the puppies. However, you are not interested in driving halfway across the country to pick the new puppy up. Before you make the final commitment to buy your new family member, you need to know the cost to ship a puppy. The answer to this question is based on several factors, including breeder policies. Some breeders include the extra fees associated with shipping in the price of the puppy. Others will expect to have you pay for them.

  • You will need a health certificate. A health certificate can cost anywhere from $40 to $60. If the puppy isn't up to date on shots, the vet will have to update vaccinations, which will make the price of the health certificate a bit higher.
  • The puppy will have to be shipped in an airline approved kennel. If your breeder can strike a deal with a wholesaler and chooses to pass on the savings to new puppy owners, the cost can be as low as $40 for a small puppy's crate. It can be as high as $100 for a crate that was purchased from the local pet store.
  • Actual shipping costs are controlled by the airline. You'll be limited by which planes fly from one destination to the other. Estimate $200-$350 for your puppy's airfare.

Not finding the advice and tips you need on this Puppy Tip Site? Request a Tip Now!

Guru Spotlight
Christina Chan