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Abbotsford Animal Hospital

Travel Documentation to the United States

We can examine and certify your healthy pet so they can travel to the Unites States with you. As the requirements for international travel are diverse and complicated, we no longer provide travel documentation for international travel.

Overview

We understand that your pet is family and you want them right by your side as you travel to the United States. The United States (US) Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced changes to the import requirements for dogs entering the United States.

These changes will come into effect on August 1, 2024 and will impact dogs travelling from Canada to the United States.

What does my pet need to travel to the United States?

As it is presently understood from the changes made by the CDC

Requirements for all dogs

All dogs must:

  • Be at least 6 months of age at time of entry or return to the United States

  • Have an implanted International Organization for Standardization (ISO)-compatible microchip

    • This must have been implanted prior to any required rabies vaccination

    • The microchip number must be documented on all required forms and in all accompanying veterinary records

  • Appear healthy upon arrival

    • Dogs may not enter the United States if they are carrying a disease contagious to people.

      • Isolation of the dog, veterinary examination, and additional testing, at the importer’s expense, may be required to determine if the dog has a contagious disease and prevent spread if the dog does not appear healthy upon arrival.

  • Have a CDC Dog Import Form receipt

    • This form should be filled out online ideally 2-10 days before arrival; however, it can also be completed right before travel (even in line at the border crossing) if you have internet access. If the information on the form changes before the dog arrives, you must submit a new form and indicate you are making changes to an existing form. All information, including port of entry where the dog is arriving, must be correct at time of arrival.

    • This form requires you to upload a clear photograph of the dog showing its face and body. Dogs that will be less than one year of age at time of arrival should have the photograph taken within 10 days before arrival.

    • There is no charge to importers for submitting this form.

    • Have additional documentation which varies depending on where the dog has been in the 6 months before entering or returning to the United States from Canada.

When should I start the process?

Travel Checklist for dogs that have been ONLY in countries that are dog rabies-free or low-risk in the 6 months before entry:

Step 1: Recommend beginning 60-90 days before travel

  • Verify dog will be at least 6 months old on day of travel.

  • Get dog microchipped or have a veterinarian verify its microchip number. Make sure the microchip number is listed on all veterinary records.

  • Visit a veterinarian to get your dog its rabies vaccination (or booster) before travel.

    • Rabies vaccination is not required if the dog has been only in dog rabies-free or low-risk countries for 6 months but is strongly recommended. It may also be required by the U.S. state or territory to which the dog is traveling.

Step 2: Recommend beginning 30 days before travel

  • Ask the veterinarian to complete the Certification of Dog Arriving from DMRVV-free or Low-Risk Country into the United States form† or other CDC-approved documentation

  • The veterinarian must submit this form to an official government veterinarian in the exporting country (or to USDA if the dog was vaccinated in the United States) for certification

  • Collect veterinary records for past 6 months.

    • These must list an address for the veterinarian in the low-risk country from where the dog is departing for the U.S. and the dog’s microchip number.

    • Veterinary records are not needed if the dog’s documentation is a valid Certification of U.S.-Issued Rabies Vaccination form, or a USDA endorsed export health certificate if the dog is returning from the dog rabies-free or low-risk country listed on the certificate.

    • If the dog’s documentation is the Certification of Foreign Rabies Vaccination and Microchip form, the importer can present a valid rabies serology titer instead of veterinary records.

  • Receive copy of Certification of Dog Arriving from DMRVV-free or Low-Risk Country into the United States (or other CDC-approved documentation) from the veterinarian.

  • Begin making travel arrangements and reservations.

The Certification of Dog Arriving from DMRVV-free or Low-Risk Country into the United States form has different entry requirements depending on whether and where the dog was vaccinated. The form is valid for:

  • A single entry for 30 days after the form was issued if it does not contain information about rabies vaccination administered in a dog rabies-free or low-risk country OR

  • Multiple entries into the US for the duration the rabies vaccination is valid (1 or 3 years) if it contains information about rabies vaccination administered in a dog rabies free or low-risk country

Step 3: 2-10 days before travel

  • Take a photo of the dog and complete the CDC Dog Import Form.

    • This form requires you to upload a picture (jpg, png, gif files only) of the dog showing its face and body.

      • Dogs that will be less than one year of age at time of arrival should have the photograph taken within 10 days of travel.

      • Ensure you enter the dog’s microchip number into this form correctly. This is very important.

      • Submit a corrected form if any of the information on this form changes.

  • Print copy of CDC Dog Import Form receipt you will receive in your email and ensure it accompanies the dog.

  • Finalize travel arrangements with airline or transport company.

Step 4: Day of travel

  • Present the following to the airline before boarding the dog:

  • CDC Dog Import Form receipt and

  • Certification of Dog Arriving from DMRVV-free or Low-Risk Country into the United form States (or other CDC-approved documentation)

  • Arrive at the location on CDC Dog Import Form receipt.

  • Present the following to the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officer:

    • CDC Dog Import Form receipt and

    • Certification of Dog Arriving from DMRVV-free or Low-Risk Country into the United States form (or other CDC-approved documentation)

How do I contact the CFIA veterinarian?

We suggest you check the current pet travel health requirements on the Canadian Food Inspection Agency website here.

Locations:

Toronto

1124 Finch Ave W Unit 2, North York, ON M3J 2E2

(647) 790-1100

Markham

145 Renfrew Dr, Markham, ON L3R 6B3

(905) 513-2850

Barrie

500 Huronia Rd #103, Barrie, ON L4N 8X3

(705) 739-0008

What if I am traveling to a different country?

As the requirements for international travel are diverse and complicated, we no longer provide travel documentation for international travel. To ensure that your pet is taken care of for travel to countries other than the United States, we recommend The International Animal Lounge.

As a pet transport company, they offer exceptional services for cats and dogs relocating worldwide, as well as broker services for pet’s transporting back to Canada. They have a team of relocation specialists that all have years of experience in pet shipping and will work side by side with you to make your pets travel as smooth as possible.