This blog grew out of my own research planning a first cruise with my mom and her service dog Asta. Asta is a non-traditional-looking service dog, a 12 pound shih tzu. In my efforts to be prepared and smooth the way for a wonderful vacation, I combed the web, lurked on the message boards, and researched products. I found lots of good information scattered all over the place, and some information lacking altogether. This blog summarizes of some of the gems I have learned.
We are off to Hawaii for Christmas on Princess Cruises. Here we are in August, and I have already received preliminary approval from the cruise line for Asta, the service dog, to come on board for our 2 week cruise from San Francisco roundtrip to Hawaii. Next, I need to get preliminary approval from the Animal Quarantine Service (AQS) in Hawaii for Asta to enter the state under the Modified Program for service dogs, and arrange for her "inspection" in our first port of call, Hilo. It is essential to get pre approval for entry well in advance. Also, Hawaii only allows dogs entering the state by airplane to enter into Honolulu. As we are on a cruise ship in Hilo (not Honolulu), special arrangements must be made. Here is my letter just faxed to AQS:
1234 Main Street San Francisco, California 94111 Tel. (123) 456 7891 Email. Email @email . com
August 24, 2013
VIA FACSIMILE ONLY 808-483-7161
PAGES: ___ (including this letter and 4 attachments)
Hawai`i Department of Agriculture
Animal Quarantine Station 99-951 Halawa Valley
Street Aiea, Hawai`i 96701-5602
Re:Admission of Service Dog to
Hawai`i of Legally Blonde; Asta Microchip#123456789123456
Dear Madam or Sir:
By this letter and accompanying documentation, I am
requesting entry of “Asta” my service dog, under the "modified"
program for Guide and Service dogs.
I will be arriving in Hawai`i via cruise ship on the Grand
Princess on Friday, December 27, 2013 in Hilo on the Island of O`AHU.This is Princess Cruise # A401 / 15 Days Hawai`i/Roundtrip
San Francisco California, Cruise Booking Number:123456(Departure Date:Dec 20,
In accordance with the requirements listed on the website,
and the instructions emailed to me from your department, I am faxing this
information to you requesting entry into Hawai`i of my service dog, Asta.
Also please find a copy attached of Asta’s formal Assistance Dog tags
issued by the City of San Francisco.I will send you an updated USDA Form 7001
closer to our date of arrival attesting that the dog was treated within 14 days
of arrival with a product containing Fipronil.
Yes, I do understand I must give the inspector an original
health certificate issued not more than 30 days before our arrival.
Please advise whether Asta will be admitted entry with me, and how we need to proceed logistically upon arrival in Hilo.