Taking Pets to Australia

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Taking Your Dog or Cat

In most cases, the importation of dogs and cats is subject to strict rules and quarantine periods, set by AQIS. The procedure for dogs and cats is outlined below and the full information package can be found on the AQIS link below.
  • Confirm eligibility of your pet - for example, some breeds are banned.
  • Dogs and cats must have a microchip.
  • Apply for a Permit to Import.
  • If approved, AQIS issue a permit, which contains the veterinary certificates to be completed and instructions on how to proceed.
  • Book Quarantine Accommodation - there are quarantine stations in Perth, Sydney and Melbourne and demand for accommodation can be high.
  • Locate a Government Approved Vet in your home country.
  • Make Travel Arrangements for your pet.
  • Obtain general vaccinations, such as distemper and kennel cough.
  • Obtain a blood test (for dogs).
  • Parasite treatment - within 4 days of export.
  • Completion of Veterinary Certifcate A - within 4 days of export.
  • Completion of Veterinary Certifcate B - usually on day of departure.
  • Check Pet in with the airline.

Quarantine

The time in quarantine varies according to the country of origin; eg. no quarantine from New Zealand, 30 days from UK, 210 days from South Africa.

Quarantine Stations only exist in Perth, Sydney and Melbourne and there can be high demand for accommodation in these stations.

You are responsible for daily accommodation fees for your pet while in quarantine, plus a number of additional fees such as airport pickup, vet inspections and so on.

For more details on all of the above, check the Bringing Cats and Dogs to Australia guide on the AQIS website.

The Cost

Be prepared - bringing a dog or cat to Aus costs much more than a standard airline ticket for anyone else in the family. The cost depends on the size of the dog (not for cats unless they are abnormally large), the length of time in quarantine and whether there are any additional, unforeseen vet bills.

As a guide, expect from about £1500 GBP for a small breed (eg. Jack Russell) up to £3500 GBP for a large breed (eg. German Shepherd). Then, quarantine costs in Aus should be around $800 AUD for a 30 day quarantine.