Travel restrictions between countries can vary drastically when transporting and relocating your pet. Not only are there various vaccinations and health clearances required, but the documentation needed can be quite different in each country. Just like with passports for people, pet passports are an excellent way to prove your pet’s identity and quickly communicate your pet’s health clearances and vaccinations.
What is a Pet Passport?
A pet passport is an official document that is in the form of a passport for your pet. The pet passport acts as an official record of the pet with vital information needed to both identify the pet and convey the overall health of the pet. A pet passport will include identification items such as the name of the pet and ID number. There will be a brief description of the pet’s appearance including the age, breed, coloration, weight, and whether the pet is spayed or neutered. Further, and most importantly, the pet passport acts as a formal document declaring the overall health of the pet and the vaccinations the pet has received.
Why Is a Pet Passport Necessary?
First and foremost, in some countries a pet passport is necessary. This varies from country to country though and is not always possible to even obtain a pet passport from your native country. Pet passports are extremely helpful when relocating internationally. A pet passport helps to speed the process of pet relocation and can improve overall communication. Having a singular document that contains pertinent information about the pet and the pet’s health certification can facilitate a flawless, fast, and easily communicated transfer.
Remember that the reason pets must be checked for vaccinations and overall good health is to prevent the spread of dangerous diseases. Consider for a moment how dangerous rabies can be. Most countries require a rabies vaccination as a bare minimum to enter the country. Rabies can not only be spread to other animals but can also be passed along to people too. In certain countries, with remote rural areas, an outbreak of rabies would be devastating. Another dangerous disease, Brucellosis, is also commonly screened for. This dangerous disease can be passed along to livestock, decimating an entire herd.
Popular Travel Destinations
It is important to remember that the actual documentation required for a pet to enter a country varies between countries. It is always a best practice to check first with the embassy or consulate to ensure you have the proper paperwork, vaccinations, and certificates to enter smoothly and legally. Below, let’s take a look at some popular destinations and the certifications required for entry.
- Australia – A popular destination, this country has several health regulations surrounding necessary vaccinations including rabies. Not only must the dog be vaccinated, but a certificate detailing a laboratory conducted rabies test is required. Further, you must have an import permit for your pet and must schedule quarantine accommodations.
- China – This country requires a pet passport to enter the country. Also required is an international health certificate, various vaccination records and a photo of your pet. If the pet is a large dog, it is best to take the photo of your pet next to a known object to convey the size of the animal in the photo.
- Germany – Germany is very similar to most other European countries. While a pet passport is a great way to speed up communication and provide clear documentation, it is not necessary for entry. Germany requires the pet to be either microchipped or have a readable tattoo. The pet must be up to date on vaccinations and the owners must have a declaration of ownership and responsibility.
- India – A No Objection Certificate from a quarantine center is necessary for your pet to move to India. The pet must be up to date on necessary vaccines and the pet must be microchipped.
- Israel – There are only a handful of ports that allow animals to enter the country. These ports are Ben Gurion Airport, Haifa, Ashdod, and Eilat Seaport. An import permit is required as well as a veterinary health certificate. The pet must be up to date on vaccines and must be microchipped.
- United States – The US does not require a certificate of health for a pet to enter the country, however, be aware that certain airlines and states may require the certificate. Be advised that your pet can be subject to examination at any point during entry to the country. Your pet must be up to date with required vaccines.
Services to Help
As seen above, every country is different and the requirements can vary drastically from country to country. Trying to figure out the logistics of pet relocation can be tricky, but there are services to help sort through the various rules and regulations. A specialized service to help with pet relocations can not only sift through the confusion of what is actually required for your pet to enter the country but can set up the necessary steps for entry.
The agent should be able to help obtain the pet passport, arrange permits, and schedule quarantine accommodations. Having a service help with your pet logistics gives you the peace of mind knowing your pet will be well cared for and can enter the property as quickly as is legally possible.