Katie Peterson | Staff Writer

As families prepare to come to or depart Fort Leavenworth, it is important to know what needs to be done before traveling with a pet, said Maj. N. Chre Benton-Castagneto, Fort Leavenworth Veterinary Treatment Facility branch chief.


Incoming personnel who are Department of Defense ID card holders and know they would like to use the VTF for their veterinary needs can fill out the preregistration form found at https://home.army.mil/leavenworth/application/files/9415/8335/4680/Ft._Leavenworth_Pet_Pre-Registration.pdf.

Veterinarian Capt. Steve Miller draws blood for a Fluorescent Antibody Virus Neutralization test from School of Advanced Military Studies student Maj. Lanea Dertinger’s dog Harper, held by Veterinary Technician Jessica Mathys, March 16, 2020, at the Fort Leavenworth Veterinary Treatment Facility. Dertinger PCSed with her pets to Hawaii, where a FAVN test, or rabies antibody titer, is required 30 days prior to travel. Photo by Prudence Siebert/Fort Leavenworth Lamp

https://home.army.mil/leavenworth/application/files/9415/8335/4680/Ft._Leavenworth_Pet_Pre-Registration.pdf.


Completed forms should be e-mailed to usarmy.leavenworth.medcom-mahc.mbx.vets@mail.mil.

Veterinarian Capt. Steve Miller weighs School of Advanced Military Studies student Maj. Lanea Dertinger’s cat Lillie Belle during an exam and blood-draw appointment March 16, 2020, at the Fort Leavenworth Veterinary Treatment Facility. Dertinger PCSed to Hawaii, where a Fluorescent Antibody Virus Neutralization test, which measures a pet’s immune response to rabies, is required for pets 30 days prior to travel. Photo by Prudence Siebert/Fort Leavenworth Lamp


“Upon arrival at Fort Leavenworth, to successfully transfer pet care to the VTF, pet owners should e-mail the VTF a copy of their pet’s vaccination certificates and immunization records from any non-military veterinary clinic,” Benton-Castagneto said. “Patient information from military veterinary clinics will automatically be transferred over during registration.”


Health certificates must be obtained within 30 days if traveling by vehicle and 10 days if traveling by airplane.


For more information, check with state regulations and airlines.


“I recommend scheduling health certificate appointments and the rabies titer as early as possible,” Benton-Castagneto said. “The rabies titer can take up to two months.”
If a pet has only been cared for by a DoD veterinarian, Benton-Castagneto said, the medical records should transfer.

Veterinarian Capt. Steve Miller examines School of Advanced Military Studies student Maj. Lanea Dertinger’s cat Lillie Belle during an appointment March 16, 2020, at the Fort Leavenworth Veterinary Treatment Facility. Dertinger PCSed to Hawaii, where a Fluorescent Antibody Virus Neutralization test, which measures a pet’s immune response to rabies, is required for pets 30 days prior to travel. Photo by Prudence Siebert/Fort Leavenworth Lamp


For pets that have been cared for by a civilian veterinarian, Benton-Castagneto said owners should obtain hardcopies of the records and digital copies of diagnostic procedures because they will not be transferable. If a pet has special needs, she also recommended obtaining hardcopies no matter what veterinarian has been providing care.
“I also recommend that they get about 90 days’ worth of meds,” Benton-Castagneto said.


For those traveling from a location outside the continental U.S., requirements depend on the country, the animal to be transported and the type of transportation, Benton-Castagneto said. Pet owners are encouraged to consult with the local DoD veterinary services or visit www.aphis.usda.gov/aphis/pet-travel.


When traveling OCONUS, the same documents — health certificate, rabies and other vaccination certificates and immunization records — are required for all domestic animals including dogs, cats and ferrets. For equid animals, i.e., horses, consult with a local DoD veterinary facility.


Regarding coronavirus concerns, there have been no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in animals, and the risk of the virus being transmitted from pet to human is considered minimal, Benton-Castagneto said.


For the most up-to-date information, visit https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/faq.html.


For more information about the Fort Leavenworth VTF, call 684-6510 or e-mail usarmy.leavenworth.medcommahc.mbx/vets@mail.mil.

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