If you are planning to go overseas with your pets it requires lots of time and careful planning. At Inner South Veterinary Centre we have AQIS accredited vets who can help you prepare your pet for export. Not many vets in Canberra are qualified to do this.
Most countries allow you to bring pets when you are moving there. Generally, there are well defined rules about cats and dogs. Other pets may require special permission from both Australian and the Overseas Authorities. The “pet export” process can be complex, time consuming and expensive. The Government or Australian Quarantine Inspection Service (AQIS) vets, the local AQIS Accredited Vets, the pet transport company and you all have important roles to play.
We advise you give yourself an absolute minimum of 2 months to prepare as many countries require vaccinations, treatments and testing to be done at least 30 days before you leave. Most importantly, if there is any chance your pet will be returning to Australia, AQIS must be informed as soon as possible. Animals can’t return directly to Australia from some countries and some extra steps taken before you leave Australia can greatly assist the return to Australia from others. All animals must be microchipped.
One good reason to give yourself plenty of time is that at first glance, there is a lot of information to take in, as you need to comply with both the Australian authorities and the Overseas authorities requirements. This Australian government website gives a concise (as concise as it gets!) overview of the 5 steps in the export process. You may need to read it multiple times to fully comprehend it, but it is worth it.
Here are a few helpful pointers about these steps:
- Try to give the AQIS Vets at Inner South Veterinary Centre plenty of notice about your impending export so we can be well prepared and make sure everything gets done in time. Email the details to firstname.lastname@example.org or call reception on 02 6295 0770 so we can assist you. The main details we needs are: country of destination, and date of travel.
- Go to the relevant website of the destination country, usually it is their Department of Agriculture, or contact the Embassy to find out their latest requirements. The AQIS website provides this information, but as stated on the website, countries may change their requirements quite suddenly and the MICOR website may be out of date. Remember, it is actually your responsibility that your pet complies with the export requirements. It will save a lot of time if you have the up to date paperwork.
- You MUST complete a Notice of Intention to Export for AQIS. This process is well described
- You need to organise transport. Unless you are experienced in this process we strongly recommend using a pet transport company, such as Jetpets. They have vets on staff who will make sure all the paperwork is correct and will do the final inspection before your pet boards their flight.
Finally, lots of people take their pets overseas and we have not heard of any pets having problems with the travel. So, make sure you get your preparation right and the rest is easy.