The Humane Society of the United States estimates that of the 6 million to 8 million dogs and cats taken into companion animal shelters across the country, half are euthanized for health ailments, behavior issues and for lack of space. Fortunately, in Hawaii there are several resources in place to ensure quality pet care. In addition to some of the resources described here, Oahu offers many low-cost training classes and veterinarian care for your forever military pet.
The Army and Marines employ animal control officers who enforce pet policies in base housing and help reunite lost animals. All bases have veterinarian clinics providing preventative care, and many military community housing developments like Forest City Military Communities contain dog parks, where trained, socialized animals that are not in heat can play with other animals. Please check with your military housing office to find out what pet-friendly events they may have planned and what pet policies apply, especially if there are any prohibited dog breeds.
Besides pet-friendly events, such as Army’s yearly Dog Days of Summer, troops can utilize the Morale, Welfare and Recreation (MWR) Pet Kennel, winner of the 2005 “Spirit of the Eagle Award” for best Army MWR facility. Many military retailers are now partnering with animal nonprofit organizations.
The Hawaiian Humane Society and the Oahu Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals hold outreach events at Schofield Barracks and the Pearl Harbor Navy Exchange Garden Center Pet Stop, giving our men and woman in uniform the opportunity to not only adopt a forever cat or dog but to sign up to volunteer at the shelter and foster pets.
One organization working with our Wounded Warriors with the Marines and Army is Hawaii Fi-Do, a service dog organization. Therapy and service dogs visit the barracks regularly, providing training for the dogs and comfort for the injured service members. For more information on Hawaii Fi-Do, please call 808-638-0200.
Tripler’s Human Animal Bond Program offers patients, families and staff a unique therapy with the help of several very special pets. The program is sponsored by the American Red Cross using specially chosen dogs, cats and rabbits.
The Pet Facilitated Therapy Program uses animals to assist a therapist in helping patients who are recovering from physical, mental or social illness. Tripler’s American Red Cross sponsors the Animal Visitation Program, where volunteers bring pets to wards, clinics and waiting areas for informal visits.
All animals are screened by veterinary services and must pass strict behavioral and physical qualifications to be a part of this program. All handlers also receive special training. For more information, contact the Human Animal Bond Program at 808-433-6631.Hawaiian Humane Society
The nonprofit Hawaiian Humane Society is Oahu’s only open-admission shelter that welcomes all animals and is the official partner with the Honolulu Police Department in enforcing animal-related laws. Call 808-356-2217 to receive a copy of our guidebook on local laws to know, including mandatory pet identification requirements, anti-abandonment, driving with animals and more. The society maintains Oahu’s official database of microchips and all pet owners new to Oahu must register with the organization to ensure lost pets get reunited with owners. Visit www.HawaiianHumane.org to learn more about their 30 programs and services, including an adoption center, volunteer programs, lost and found services, pet ID programs and events. Email email@example.com for more information.Military Veterinarian Clinics
The U.S. Army Veterinary Corps operates four veterinary medical facilities on Oahu that provide services for pets owned by qualified patrons (DEERS enrollment).
Pearl-Hickam Joint Base
Pets are seen by appointment. Appointment times vary depending on the facility, but most sites offer appointments Monday through Friday, with occasional evening and weekend appointments offered.
Services offered include routine sick-call appointments and well-patient exams with a focus on prevention-medicine and wellness services such as vaccination, fecal testing, heartworm and infectious disease screening, health certificates and microchipping. Most facilities offer laboratory testing and radiology services.
Some facilities offer routine surgical (spay, neuter, mass removal) and dental services on a space-available basis.
All services and products are associated with a fee to the pet owner that is due at the time services are provided. Fees are generally significantly lower than those charged by civilian veterinary practices.
Due to the limited extent of services and no emergency services, it is recommended that all pet owners have civilian veterinary care options established.Military Breed Bans
All pit bulls and pit bull mixes are banned from military housing. Other breeds are dependent on service. Please contact your base housing office to find out what other breeds are prohibited should you decide to reside in military housing.Military Dog Parks
Many of the military base housing services provide dog parks. Please call your housing office to find out if your housing community offers this service to its residents.Hawaii Military Pets
Launched August 2011, Hawaii Military Pets is a one-stop resource for all Hawaii military pet information, celebrating the bond between all animals and our Hawaii men and women in uniform. Through this online resource, find pet transport information, boarding services, Hawaii military pet policies and more. This project is an interactive way for service members to talk about what resources they need for their forever family pet. This is also a forum to solicit feedback on issues such as military breed bans, feral cat issues on base, foster and adoption programs for the deploying troops, as well as overall military pet policies. Please call 808-388-3423 for more information.Pet Information for Deploying Service Members
The Pets of Patriots Program is designed to place pets in a caring home while their owner is deployed. If you are an active-duty service member seeking foster care for your animal while deployed, or you are interested in becoming a foster volunteer, please contact the Hawaiian Humane Society Outreach coordinator at 808-356-2217.MWR Pet Facility Offers Four-star Accommodations
Military pet owners can provide their pets with their own four-star accommodations at the MWR Kennel Facility, located at the former Hawaii Animal Quarantine Station, which is one of just three facilities under military control in the world. It fulfills a need for a place for military members to house their dogs and cats during PCS ins and outs, TDYs and emergencies.
Each dog kennel is approximately 6 by 14 feet. The entire kennel is covered and fenced and includes separate run and bedding areas. Cat kennels are about half the size of the dog kennels and feature a climbing apparatus and sleeping ledge. Also, the post veterinary staff inspects the facility on a quarterly basis for cleanliness, grounds maintenance and general animal care.
Owners are also encouraged to bring toys and bedding to help make their pet comfortable during their stay.
The costs at the MWR Kennel Facility are much lower than civilian facilities. Rates for boarding dogs are $16 per day and $12 for a second family pet boarding in the same kennel. Cats are $12 per day and $7 for the second animal sharing the same kennel.
The kennel facility is open to all services across the island, including retirees and DOD civilians. Eligibility and priority for boarding animals are as follows: deploying personnel, PCS personnel housed in transient quarters or guest housing, personnel on emergency leave, temporary duty personnel, regular or military leave personnel, Department of Army personnel and all other branches of service personnel. Dogs and cats must have all shots current, including rabies and bordetella, be on flea and heartworm preventative, and be in good health. Additionally, customers must bring shot records and a health certificate within 10 days of boarding pets. Most importantly, if the service member leaves the island during the boarding period, the kennel manager must have the name, number and address of an on-island contact.
The reservation form and other important information are located at the MWR Army Hawaii website at www.mwrarmyhawaii.com, under Rec & Leisure.
In order to reserve a space, the registration form must be completed and a two-day boarding deposit must be submitted to the kennel at least 20 days prior to the boarding date. Deposit will be refunded if the reservation is canceled within five days of boarding. Boarding of animals without reservations will only be accepted on a space-available basis.
Visiting hours are 1 to 4 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday, noon to 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. The facility is closed to customers Monday and Friday. Call 808-368-3456 to make reservations.Additional Resources for Your Military Pet
Hawaii has three magazines for the pet community. Hawaii Pet magazine is distributed quarterly and contains pet-friendly events, nonprofit listings and other resources for all companion animals. Island Dog magazine is similar in scope but is geared for dog owners. Lastly, Ilio magazine is available with an emphasis on conformation and performance dog events. For more information, Hawaii Pet and Island Dog are found via website and on Facebook. Ilio dog magazine is located in many Oahu pet stores and veterinarian clinics.Island Pet Movers
Island Pet Movers takes over the process of moving your pets to Hawaii from the day you call us. Regardless of where you are in the process, we will make this move stress-free for you and your pets. We are locally owned and operated in Honolulu, and we are experts at relocating pets to and from Hawaii. Island Pet Movers has a strong connection with our military members. With having more than 29 years of our own military life experience and firsthand knowledge of PCSing with pets, we are your go-to people. All documents are processed for you in person and we guarantee same-day direct release. We work directly with your vet clinic on the mainland or overseas to be sure that we have everything that we need and answer any questions your vet clinic may have. We work hard to find you the least expensive and most comfortable routing for your pets’ travel to Hawaii. We are proud to serve our military clients and offer 10 percent discounts on all of our services for military members. If your spouse is currently deployed, we offer an additional 5 percent discount as our way of thanking you and your family for your sacrifice. Please visit us at www.islandpetmovers.com or on Facebook, or call 808-783-8419.Hawaii’s Animal Quarantine Laws
Hawaii is a rabies-free state. Hawaii’s quarantine law is designed to protect residents and pets from potentially serious health problems associated with the introduction and spread of rabies. Success of the quarantine program is dependent on maintaining isolation of your pet from other animals for the required quarantine period. Importation of dogs, cats and other carnivores into Hawaii is governed by Chapter 4-29 of the State of Hawaii, Department of Agriculture Administrative Rules. This law states that these animals are required to complete a 120-day confinement in the State Animal Quarantine Station. If specific pre-arrival and post-arrival requirements are met, animals may qualify for a 30-day or a five-day-or-less quarantine. A five-day-or-less checklist on Pages 152-153 has been developed to assist pet owners with that process (also available as a PDF at www.hdoa.hawaii.gov/ai/aqs/animal-quarantine-information-page).
Hawaii Resident Pets: Owners wishing to leave the state of Hawaii with their pets, and return, must meet all requirements for five-day-or-less quarantine program to return without extended quarantine. The 120-day “pre-arrival” waiting period, after a successful rabies blood test, can be completed prior to leaving the state or can be done in combination with time spent out of state before re-entry.
For more information or to download the Pet Quarantine Hawaii brochure, visit www.hdoa.hawaii.gov/ai/aqs/animal-quarantine-information-page. Email, firstname.lastname@example.org or contact the quarantine office at:Hawaii Department of Agriculture
Animal Quarantine Station
99-951 Halawa Valley St.
Aiea, HI 96701-5602