Interisland Referrals: Steps to Take When Traveling to VERCMarch 22, 2023
We understand there may be questions that come to mind when your pet needs care from our VERC team in Honolulu, but you’re not located on the island of Oahu. That is why we have prepared for you some helpful steps and information below, in hopes to answer those questions.
1. Submit Patient Referral & Schedule an Appointment
Before moving forward with any of the following steps, your primary veterinarian needs to submit a patient referral to VERC, along with your pet’s most up-to-date medical information.
Once our VERC team receives the referral, our referral coordinator will reach out to you to schedule your pet’s appointment.
2. Understand How Long You Will Need to Stay on Oahu
The length of stay will depend on the type of appointment for your pet. If you are scheduled for a consult, there is no need for an additional length of stay. If your pet is scheduled for a procedure, the length of stay will depend on the veterinarians’ recommendations that can be discussed when confirming appointment.
For most procedures, we recommend that pet owners be prepared to stay on Oahu at least one night, and you should be prepared to bring any personal items you may need with you and your pet’s current medications, if appropriate. We typically do not recommend that pet owners leave blankets, pet beds, or toys at the hospital with their pet so they do not become lost.
If your pet requires surgery, they may be hospitalized for several days. In which case, some pet owners decide to wait on island while others decide to go home and travel back when their pet is ready for discharge. This is your decision.
IF YOUR PET IS A NEUROLOGY PATIENT
We recommend that pet owners be prepared for their pet to spend the night on island following any Neurology procedure, whether that is at the hospital or in a pet-friendly hotel. This is so we can guarantee 24/7 care is easily available if a patient’s health declines or symptoms worsen. We do make an effort to plan for MRI the same day as the patient’s consultation for off-island clients, but this may not always be the case.
If your pet is scheduled for an MRI, they should fast the night before the appointment after dinner. Water is okay to have. If your pet is receiving medications (especially seizure medications), they can be administered in the morning with the smallest amount of food possible.
Expectations for you and your pets’ length of stay on Oahu or at VERC will be discussed prior to your travel and appointment.
3. Plan Your Travel
Flights To Oahu
When you live on another Island and you find your pet needs our services and care, you will have to plan your travel, which will require flying to Oahu. Most of the larger airlines only allow pets in cabin, if they can fit underneath the seat, but a smaller airline will allow larger dogs in crates in the cabin. We recommend checking your airlines rules and regulations.
There are 3 interisland airlines that allow pets to fly with you:
- Hawaiian Airlines
- Mokulele (please note: does not fly from all islands)
You can read more about Hawaii Interisland Flights in 2023: Hawaiian vs Southwest vs Mokulele here.
Flying with a stressed pet
If you believe your pet will be stressed during the flight, we suggest you consult with your primary veterinarian about anti-anxiety medication or sedatives to help. Your primary veterinarian can reach out to the VERC veterinarian scheduled to see your pet if they have questions regarding medication interactions, but our service cannot prescribe anything until we have had the consultation.
If you are flying in the night before a consultation but feel your pet has significantly declined during the flight, bring your pet straight to the hospital upon landing as our emergency service is available 24/7.
CONVENIENT PET FRIENDLY HOTELS LOCAL TO VERC
- Surfjack Hotel & Swim Club in Waikiki
Pet weight restrictions: No breed/weight restrictions and no pet fees
- Airport Honolulu Hotel, located at the Airport
Pet weight restrictions: up to 45lbs
- Best Western Plaza Hotel, located at the Airport
Pet weight restrictions: up to 80lbs
What If I Can’t Afford to Make These Accommodations?
If traveling is something you cannot do, we suggest speaking with our team and letting them know so they can find a plan that works best for you.