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Moving Pets to Australia

By May 9, 2023No Comments
How to move pets to Australia

A 5-Step Guide to Moving Pets from the US to Australia

Relocating to Australia with your beloved pet can be an exciting but overwhelming experience. To ensure your pet has a safe and stress-free journey, there are a few steps you need to take when transporting a pet to Australia.

In this article, we’ll provide you with a comprehensive guide to moving your pet from the US to Australia, including everything you need to know about pet transport, pet passports, pet travel insurance, veterinary health certificates, and more.


1. Make Sure Your Pet Is Eligible to Relocate

Before you begin the process of moving your pet to Australia, it’s essential to ensure that your pet is eligible to relocate. The Australian government has strict regulations regarding the import of pets to protect the country’s environment and wildlife.

To be eligible for relocation to Australia, your pet must meet the following criteria:

It’s important to note that not all dog breeds are allowed in Australia. Certain breeds, such as Pit Bull Terriers, Dogo Argentinos, and Japanese Tosas, are prohibited from entering the country due to their potential threat to public safety.

Know More Here: All about moving overseas with pets

Dog Breeds Banned in Australia

The Australian government also restricts the import of certain species of birds, reptiles, and other animals to prevent the spread of diseases and protect native species.

Before planning your pet’s relocation, make sure to check the list of banned breeds and species to ensure that your pet is eligible for entry into Australia. You can find a complete list of restricted breeds and species on the Australian Government’s Department of Agriculture and Water Resources website.

Read Here: How much does it cost to move to Australia

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2. Obtain the Right Documentation

To move your pet from the US to Australia, you need to obtain the required documentation. The documentation includes a microchip, vaccinations, import permits, and a health certificate issued by a licensed veterinarian. 


Your pet must have a microchip implanted that complies with ISO Standard 11784 or 11785. The microchip number must be recorded on all relevant documents, including the import permit and health certificate.

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Australia has strict vaccination requirements for all pets entering the country. Your pet must have a valid rabies vaccination certificate and all other required vaccinations.

moving pets to Australia

It’s important to note that the rabies vaccination must be given at least 180 days before the pet’s arrival in Australia.

All dogs must have a valid rabies vaccination certificate. In addition, they also need a distemper, hepatitis, and parvovirus vaccination. Cats also require a calicivirus, herpesvirus, and panleukopenia vaccination. 

It’s important to note that the above vaccinations are the minimum requirements for dogs and cats entering Australia. Your pet may require additional vaccinations depending on age, health, and other factors. 

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Import Permits

You must obtain an import permit from the Australian government’s Department of Agriculture and Water Resources. The permit specifies the conditions your pet must meet for entry into Australia. You must apply for the permit at least six weeks before your pet’s planned arrival in Australia.

Know More Here: 5 tips for moving overseas with animals

Health Certificate

Your pet will need a health certificate issued by a licensed veterinarian to enter Australia. The certificate must state that your pet is in good health and free from infectious diseases. The certificate must also include details of all the vaccinations your pet has received, including the rabies vaccination, microchip information, and any other relevant information. You must get an Australia-specific health certificate from the USDA-APHIS website. A USDA-accredited vet must complete and sign it within 5 days of departure.

3. Understand the Quarantine Process when Moving Pets to Australia

Australia has a strict quarantine process for all animals entering the country. This process is in place to prevent the spread of diseases and to protect Australia’s unique environment and native wildlife.

moving animals to australia

All pets entering Australia must spend a minimum of ten days in quarantine.

During this time, they will be kept in a designated quarantine facility where they will be monitored for signs of illness or disease.

Here are some important things to know about the quarantine process:

  • Quarantine facility: The quarantine facility where your pet will be held will depend on the port of entry into Australia. Three quarantine facilities are located in Melbourne, Sydney, and Perth.
  • Pre-Booking Quarantine: It’s important to pre-book a spot in the quarantine facility well in advance of your pet’s arrival in Australia. The quarantine facility will need to be notified of your pet’s arrival date and time.

Know More Here: Prohibited Items when Moving Overseas

  • Quarantine Fees: There are fees associated with the quarantine process, including booking and daily boarding fees. On average, the 10-day quarantine fee is AUD 2,000 ($1,325). It’s important to factor these costs into your overall relocation budget.
  • Health Checks: While in quarantine, your pet will undergo daily health checks to monitor for any signs of illness or disease. If your pet becomes ill while in quarantine, it may be required to spend additional time until they recover.
  • Quarantine Release: Once your pet has completed its ten-day quarantine period and has been cleared by a veterinarian, it will be released from the quarantine facility. You will need to arrange for your pet’s transportation from the quarantine facility to its final destination.

It’s important to note that the quarantine process can be stressful for pets, especially if they are already experiencing the stress of travel and relocation. To make the process as smooth as possible, it’s recommended that you work with a professional pet transport company that can assist with all aspects of your pet’s relocation, including the quarantine process.

Know More Here: All about moving to Australia from the US

4. Prepare Your Pet for the Move

Moving can be a stressful experience for pets, but there are steps you can take to help make the transition as smooth as possible. One of the most important things you can do is to acclimate your pet to its carrier well before the move.

If your pet is not used to being in a carrier, it’s essential to introduce them to it gradually. Start by placing the carrier in an area of your home where your pet spends a lot of time, and leave the door open so they can explore it on their own.

Once your pet is comfortable going in and out of the carrier, try closing the door for short periods of time. Gradually increase the length of time your pet spends in the carrier with the door closed.

How to move pets to Australia from the US

It’s also a good idea to take your pet for short car rides in the carrier to help them get used to the motion and sounds of travel. Start with short trips around the block and gradually increase the length of the trip.

Acclimating your pet to its carrier can help reduce its stress levels during travel. It’s essential to choose a carrier that is appropriate for your pet’s size and breed and to make sure the carrier is well-ventilated and secure.

In addition to acclimating your pet to its carrier, it’s also important to talk to your veterinarian about any additional steps you can take to prepare your pet for travel. This may include medications to help reduce anxiety or motion sickness and dietary recommendations.

5. Get Professional Assistance when Moving Pets to Australia

While it’s possible to handle all aspects of your pet’s relocation on your own, working with a professional pet transportation service can help ensure a smoother and less stressful experience for both you and your pet.

Professional pet transport services can assist with all aspects of the relocation process, from obtaining the necessary documentation to arranging for the actual transport of your pet. They can also provide guidance on preparing your pet for travel and can help ensure that all necessary precautions are taken to keep your pet safe and healthy during the journey.

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When choosing a pet transport service, it’s important to do your research and choose a company with a proven track record of success. Look for a company that is licensed and insured and that has experience handling international pet relocations.

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At International Van Lines, we specialize in international pet transportation and have helped countless families safely and successfully relocate their pets to Australia and other destinations worldwide. Our team of experts can guide you through every step of the process, from obtaining the necessary documentation to arranging for the actual transport of your pet.

Read Here: How to Understand International Moving Quotes

If you’re planning a move to Australia with your pet, contact us today to learn more about how we can help make the journey as stress-free and easy as possible for you and your furry friend.

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