For many people, pets are as much a part of the family as any other member.
These days it's a lot easier to take Flossie the cat or Rover the dog to share your new life abroad, but just like other family members, there will be some necessary adjustment.
So when relocating abroad, it's important to follow certain steps to make sure your pet is as calm and comfortable as can be.
Crown Relocations has put together some practical tips to help your entire family relocate together:
1) Ensure your pet matches the criteria of the Pet Travel Scheme (PETS). This involves inserting a microchip, a full vaccination and having relevant travel documents. Your animal will also need to travel on a PETS authorised route by a PETS approved carrier.
2) Different countries have different animal classifications and some will require a specific health certificate or proof that your animal has undertaken a period of quarantine. If you have any worries, it's best to contact your destination country's consulate or embassy.
3) If you're relocating within the European Union, there is only one set of rules for animals entering the country, apart from the UK and Malta which have more rigorous requirements.
4) Make sure your pet gets used to being carried around in a container. As an owner it's up to you to make sure they can move and stretch, so they are as comfortable as they can be.
5) Put a familiar smelling cushion and their favourite toy in their carrier to help them settle during the transportation.
6) Your pet won't necessarily be able to travel on the same flight as you. Double check with your airline before you travel to see what time your pet will arrive and whether any alternatives are available.
7) If you're required to change flights during your journey, you need to follow the rules of each airline. It's quite common that different airlines have different rules, so research before you travel.
8) If your pet is travelling as checked baggage or in cargo, you'll need a carrier which is in accordance to the rules of the International Air Transport Association (IATA).
9) As simple as it sounds, check the location of your vets in your new surroundings. That way, if there are any problems you are able to consult a nearby vet quickly. Do they speak English? This is a question that a property agent in Menorca gets often asked by British retirees contemplating a move to the island.
10) If you travel to a different country on the Pet Travel Scheme, you are able to return on this without going through many of the processes above. However, your pet may be required to have another vaccination against rabies if needed and dogs must be examined by a vet for tapeworm before entering the UK.
For more information about setting up life overseas, head to www.moveoverseas.co.uk/mymove; or to see Place in the Sun's Top 10 Tips for relocating abroad.