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Moving Pets to Australia

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Attention: This information is to be used as general guidelines and may not be updated to meet the current requirements. Before you travel, be sure to contact the appropriate authorities for your destination country.


The rules and requirements in this document are applicable to import to Australia from the United States.

Dogs, Cats and other small animals imported into Australia must undergo import quarantine, in accordance with the Rabies Prevention Law.

On Condition that the following criteria have been fulfilled, the quarantine period for a dog or cat entering Australia is 180 days. 150 of these days can be completed in the country of origin, however there is a mandatory 30-day quarantine for all live animals entering the country.

Below we have broken down the requirements and the recommended days, prior to your departure, that you should have this done by.

210 Days Before Arrival:

MICROCHIP IMPLANTING: Animal must have (or obtain) microchip identification. This must be done before the rabies vaccinations. The only microchips that can be read In Australia are ISO 11784 and 11785 Standards. For any other chips, you must bring your own microchip reader.

During import inspection at the time of arrival in Australia, if the microchip number is not confirmed or the microchip number is not the same as that on the inspection certificate, the animal will be subject to a 180-day quarantine period or returned to the country of origin.

After implant of the microchip, the animal receives a new rabies vaccination. This must be “inactivated rabies vaccinations.” Be sure to obtain certification of the period of validity for the particular vaccinations that you obtain (some are good for two years, others for only one).

Pet must be at least 90 days old at time of first vaccination.

180 Days Before Arrival:

After the Rabies Vaccination (ideally within 2-3 weeks), animal must receive a Rabies Neutralizing Antibody Titre Test (RNATT) to ensure that the rabies vaccination has provided adequate rabies antibody levels and must be tested by a facility approved by the Government of Australia. Your Vet will send these to the approved lab listed below. Please have your vet call them before sending to make sure they are aware of the delivery and the destination location (Australia). The results of the blood test must be 0.5 IU/ml or above.

Your vet will need to scan your pet’s microchip prior to the blood draw for the RNATT Test.

The date in which blood was drawn for this test is when the 180-day quarantine countdown begins. You may keep your pet in the country of origin for 150 days and send at this time, exposing the animal to the minimum 30-day quarantine period.

This test result will remain valid for 1 year from the time the blood sample was taken. If you need to repeat your Pet’s RNATT you must re-test within a year of the initial RNATT to demonstrate continuous protection against rabies and to avoid another lengthy wait before being eligible for entry into Australia.

The date of the blood sampling, the laboratory used, microchip number, and the test results shall be well noted on all health certificates. The matching of these numbers is critical to its success. Please double-check them!

BEFORE the bloods collection and its shipment to this laboratory, please have your vet ask the lab listed below how to apply for the test, label the blood container, and send the sample.

Once these results have been returned to either yourself or the vet, you can begin the process of applying for the required IMPORT PERMIT. Please contact your Pet Relocation Agent at this time for further instruction.

30 Days Before Arrival:

DOGS ONLY: Within 30 days of departure have your vet scan the animal’s microchip and draw blood for the following tests:

  1. Ehrlichiosis — Your dog must produce a negative result using the Indirect Fluorescent Antibody Test at a dilution of 1:40. Within 24 hours of blood draw, treat with external parasite treatment against ticks.
  2. Brucellosis — Your dog must produce a negative result by means of a serum agglutination test. Once blood is collected for this test your dog must not be mated or inseminated prior to export.
  3. Leptospirosis — Your dog needs to produce a negative result by means of a microscopic agglutination test to be eligible for import. These results need to read less than 50% agglutination at a serum dilution of 1:100. Dogs record a result of more than 1:100 but less than 1:800 can be re-tested 14 days or more after the first test. These second results must also show a titre result of less than 1:800.

Dogs that record a result of 1:800 or more are ineligible for import.

Note: All original results will need to travel with the dog and will also need to be recorded on the Import Permit (Veterinary Certificate A).

10 Days Before Arrival:

Obtain a Health Certificate from your Vet within 10 days of departure. This certificate must state that the animal(s) are in good health and OK to fly.

4 Days Before Arrival:

  1. Internal Parasite Treatment — Dogs and Cats must be treated with a product approved for the treatment of nematodes and cestodes e.g. Drontal.
  2. External Parasite Treatment — Teat with medicines effective against ticks and fleas. Note product and concentration. Oral products, injections and medicated collars are not satisfactory, neither are products that rely on the parasite biting your pet. Washes and rinses that prevent ticks and tick bites are acceptable.

    The active ingredient, dose rate, and treatment date for the above treatments must be recorded on Veterinary Certificate A.

  3. Final Vet Exam — Must be performed by an accredited vet. Vet Certificate A is to be completed at this time. An international health certificate must also be issued at this time: APHIS Form 7001.

In addition to the above, we strongly recommend that your pets have the following annual vaccines given prior to departure:

  • Dogs: Bordatella, Distemper, Contagious Hepatitis (Adenovirus type II acceptable), Parvovirus Infectious Disease Trivalent Vaccine (parainflueza, corona virus, infections disease immunizations are also suggested).
  • Cats: Feline Viral Rhinotracheitis, Feline Caliccivirus, And Feline Panleukopenia Vaccine

Written by Martyn Cohen

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Schumacher Cargo Logistics utilizes insured, secured and bonded facilities. We provide warehousing, packing, crating, trucking and loading services out of our own warehouses here in the USA - Los Angeles, Houston, Savannah, Miami, New York, and New Jersey. All other worldwide destinations are covered by our affiliated organization member companies.