Travel With Care

Pets Traveling Abroad

International travel with your pet can be a wonderful experience for the both of you. However, it is very important that you are aware of the requirements for your intended destination. Early planning is the key to ensure a stress-­‐free and cost-­‐effective journey!

Step 1: Determine the requirements for your pet in the country of destination. These requirements can vary based on the type of pet you have (dog, cat, etc) and the type of diseases that are absent or present in the country of destination. Some countries have their own health certificate, others only require a US-­‐origin International Health Certificate (APHIS form 7001) and some require both. The USDA Animal & Plant, Health Inspection Service (APHIS) website has a user-­‐friendly list of all of the countries and their
requirements that makes it easy for you to use:

Step 2: Consult with your family veterinarian. All international health certificates will have to be signed by a USDA accredited veterinarian (which should be your local family veterinarian). Your vet will have to perform a physical exam and give any necessary vaccinations, dewormers and any other preventatives that are necessary for entry into the country of destination. Your family veterinarian will then have to sign the health certificates, ensuring that your pet was examined within a certain time frame prior to travel and has met all the requirements for that country. Your family veterinarian should also be able to assist you, should you have any questions about timelines, correct forms, etc.

Step 3: Make an appointment at your state’s federal Veterinary Services office for federal endorsement. Once your family veterinarian has signed the health certificates you must make an appointment with your state Veterinary Services office for federal endorsement (or you can send the documents through the mail). A federal, USDA veterinarian will look over all your documentation to make sure you have met all the requirements for that country. The forms will be signed, stamped and endorsed with a federal seal. FORMS CANNOT BE ALTERED ONCE THEY ARE FEDERALLY ENDORSED.

Important Things to Remember:  

• Should you or your family vet have any questions, contact your local Federal Veterinary Services Import/Export Office to help you!
• Keep in mind the timeline for everything! Vaccines, physical exams and endorsed health certificates all have a shelf life and this can vary.
• Contact airline carriers to determine their requirements for foreign pet travel. Not all airlines transport pets internationally!
• Understand that things can vary depending on if you are traveling with your pet or if your pet is traveling alone
• There are several pet travel companies that will handle all the paperwork for you if you do not want the hassle! You can take a look at their websites if you are interested. But, be careful as they can be expensive and some are far better than other.

Other helpful links:

• Pet Passports:
• Center for Disease Control:
• US Department of State:
International Pet & Animal Transportation Association (IPATA):

Safe Travels!