Pets are TCKs Too

Ringgit 2003

I never realized it before, but last week when my family dog Ringgit died, I realized that she was as much of a TCK as I am. She was born in Australia and shipped to us in Malaysia. She moved around the world with us, but she never returned to her passport country.

Ringgit, myself and my brother in Malaysia 2001
Ringgit, myself and my brother in Malaysia 2001


Ringgit has experienced beaches, jungles, desserts and mountains. She has traveled the world, and always with a wagging tail. She survived through tropical storms, a revolution, political turmoil and the Arab Spring. She’s more traveled and worldly than many of my friends!


And so, it occurred to me that many families who live overseas have pets too. These pets are most often adopted in the host country and with some luck; they continue to travel with their people.


I can’t tell you how many times my friends took in a stray scruffy kitten or mangy dog from the street, and after a few hours of begging their parents they ended up at a vet’s office paying for vaccines and food.

Walking in Big Bend State Park
Walking in Big Bend State Park

Having animal companions to accompany your travels may be a hassle when it comes to paperwork and the actual traveling – especially with a large dog – but they always make it worth it. When you come home from a long vacation they are the first ones to greet you with a wagging tail or a sassy twitch of the nose.

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