Leaving the Country with Your Pet? You’ll Need an International Health Certificate
Traveling outside of the country can be a hassle, but it’s important to have all of your bases covered before you leave—especially if you’re taking your pet with you! That’s why we are pleased to offer international health certificates for pets here at Town & Country Animal Hospital in Fairfax. An international health certificate shows that your pet meets all of the health requirements of the country you will be visiting. You need to have your pet vaccinated and up-to-date on their fecal and heartworm tests as soon as possible, and should also have their international health certificate completed and signed by the USDA-APHIS office state veterinarian at least 10 days before your trip.
To begin, you need to call the local USDA-APHIS office state veterinarian at (804) 343-2560, along with the embassy of the country to which you’re traveling, to find out their health requirements. You can also go to the USDA-APHIS website to see these requirements by selecting your destination country in the dropdown list, then clicking “View Requirements.” Then locate the forms needed to “export” your pet and print them out, along with the instructions provided. Read all of these instructions very carefully, and be sure to look into the health requirements of surrounding countries in case of a flight layover.
It never hurts to be thorough; we recommend printing out copies of your pet’s last two rabies certificates, along with a summary of their most recent vaccinations. Include signed documentation or an invoice that includes the date of your pet’s microchip implantation. Call your USDA state office veterinarian and destination country embassy to make sure you have everything you need.
ALL international health certificates must be signed by the state veterinarian in Richmond, VA. You need to either schedule an appointment or have the papers sent via Fed-Ex. ALL forms must be filled out and completed within 10 days of your departure date.