Traveling with a Pet in the UK, US, Canada or Australia: An Ultimate Guide
Are you about to study abroad and plan to take your furry friend with you? It’s understandable – after all, many people treat their pets as family, and their companion can help you adjust to a new environment and a new life.
However, the first thing to do is to check with your veterinarian if your pet is healthy enough to travel. Only then should you consider taking your pet abroad.
There are plenty of steps and guidelines to follow if you’re traveling with a pet, but don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. Here’s everything you need to know if you’re thinking of bringing your pet to the UK, US, Canada or Australia:
A guide to traveling with a pet in the UK, USA, Canada or Australia
Bringing your furry friend to Great Britain (England, Scotland and Wales) is relatively straightforward. It also accepts most dog breeds and all cat breeds.
Here are the requirements your pet must meet to enter Great Britain:
If your pet does not meet any of the above requirements, it may be quarantined for up to four months – and you will have to bear all quarantine fees and charges. MoveHub – a global logistics company – notes that the overall cost of quarantine is around £200 for cats and £300 for dogs.
You must also ensure that your pet does not arrive more than five days before or after you or your furry friend will be classified as a commercial import. You will have to comply with a different set of tedious and complex procedures rules.
The Land Down Under has strict rules on bringing a pet cat or dog into the country. To enter Australia, your pet must travel — as manifest cargo only – at Melbourne International Airport to undergo quarantine at the Mickleham Post-Entry Quarantine Facility for at least 10 days. According to Department of Agriculture, Water and Environmentquarantine will cost a minimum of AU$2,000.
The Australian government has also banned several breeds of cats and dogs, listed by MyAustraliaImmigration:
- Savannah cats, safari cats, Chausies cats and Bengal cats
- Dogo Argentino, Fila Brasileiro, Japanese Tosa, American pit bull terrier or pit bull terrier, Perro de Presa Canario or Presa Canario, Czechoslovakian Wolfdog (Czechoslovakian Vlcak), Saarloos Wolfdog, Lupo Italiano (Italian Wolfdog) and Kunming Wolfdog
Here are the requirements your pet must meet to enter Australia:
- He was microchipped
- He was vaccinated against rabies (within a year of entering Australia)
- He did a blood test
Also, depending on the country you are from, your pet may need an import permit (around AU$480) and additional treatments and vaccinations if you are not from one of the 96 countries. approved. Note that if your pet is from an unapproved country, it is prohibited from entering Australia.
Canada has somewhat lenient rules for bringing a pet into the country. For example, it is not mandatory for a pet dog or cat to be microchipped.
However, it is mandatory for all pets (except those coming from the United States) to undergo an inspection upon arrival. It will cost around 30 Canadian dollars. Quarantine is not necessary unless your pet has medical issues that require special attention.
It should be noted that if your pet is from a country that is not on Canada’s rabies-free list, they must receive a rabies vaccine with proof of certification that they do not have the rabies, written in English or French.
However, the Canadian government considers cats older than three months and dogs older than eight months to be free of rabies. A rabies vaccination is not required, but proof of certification is still required.
Canada Migrates also notes that a statement from a government authority or veterinarian proving that rabies has not existed in the country of origin for six months must be presented.
Here is a list of countries classified as rabies-free:
- New Zealand
- United Kingdom (England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland)
If your pet dog or cat is less than three months old, they are exempt from Canada’s import requirements.
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) sets different rules for bringing a pet dog or cat into the country.
Here are the requirements if you are bringing your pet dog:
- He has been vaccinated against rabies (while dogs from rabies-free countries are not required to be vaccinated, the CDC strongly recommends that all dogs get vaccinated for safety reasons)
- He has the valid rabies certificate in the United States or abroad (a normal valid rabies certificate will have to go through more stages here)
- Must be at least six months old if from a high-risk country
- He was ISO microchipped
The CDC strictly controls the entry of dogs into the country. It has listed more than 100 countries as high risk countries. Suppose your pet dog comes from a high-risk country and has a valid foreign rabies certificate. In this case, you will also need to request a CDC Dog License Import online as well as getting a valid rabies serological titer from an accredited laboratory.
Dogs coming from high-risk countries will also need to undergo quarantine at one of these airports:
- Wetting (ANC)
- Atlanta (ATL)
- Boston (BOS)
- Chicago (ORD)
- Dallas (DFW)
- Detroit (DTW)
- Honolulu (HNL)
- Houston (IAH)
- Los Angeles (LAX)
- Miami (MIA)
- Minneapolis (MSP)
- New York (JFK)
- Newark (EWR)
- Philadelphia (PHL)
- San Francisco (FSO)
- San Juan (SJU)
- Seattle (WED)
- Washington D.C. (DIA)
Meanwhile, cats do not need a rabies or health certificate to enter the United States. However, some airlines and states still require one or both, so do your research.
Your pet cat may also be subject to inspection upon arrival in the United States.