REQUIREMENTS TO IMPORT DOGS/CATS TO CHINA
- Microchip must be inserted before rabies vaccine is administered
- Rabies Vaccine
- International health certificate, export license. -This will be facilitated by United Pet Express.
- Copy of owner’s passport
Original documents to come along with the pet(s)
1. International Health Certificate (this will be provided by Us if you export from Thailand)
2. Vaccination Records -The record must have pets' vaccination histories with tattoos or chips, rabies shots (anti-rabies inoculation) older than 30 days but it must not be expired.
3. Microchip Certificate
Official certification of recent rabies vaccination
An official certificate from your current country (e.g., government office) for exporting your pet outside of the country
A health certificate (or letter) prepared by your veterinarian in your current country, attesting to the health of your pet
As of November 1, 2012, pets arriving China in Beijing must undergo 7-days to 30-days mandatory quarantine. The length of the quarantine period will depend on the rabies status of the country from which the pet is entering into China. Pets entering into China from the USA and Canada are subject to 30-days quarantine. Pets entering into China from rabies free or rabies controlled nations or territories such as Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore, Taiwan, United Kingdom are subject to 7-days quarantine. Please contact ICVS for more information about quarantine requirements.
Pets are quarantined at a government run facility and owners will be charged for the quarantine. The quarantine will be strictly enforced even for elderly pets or pets with pre-existing health conditions. Home quarantine previously offered when mandatory quarantine was 30-days will not be considered unless there are extraordinary circumstances concerning the animal and its health.
The Beijing quarantine facilities are operated by the Quarantine Bureau and are located near the airport. Pets are fed and watered daily and kennels are cleaned regularly. Pets are provided with basic care and treated humanely. Visitation is not currently permitted while pets are under quarantine.
Owners are strongly recommended to ensure their pets are fully vaccinated for kennel cough (Bordetella) at least two-weeks prior to departure. Kennel cough is an infectious disease that can be transmitted among animals in kennels/boarding facilities and during transit with other animals. Please check with your veterinarian in your current country to find out more about the kennel cough vaccination.
Once your pet arrives in China, owners may bring them to the International Center for Veterinary Services (ICVS) for a comprehensive examination to ensure their health (especially if any time was spent in quarantine) and to get them registered so that ICVS can provide pets with their official vaccination certificates (given along with their next rabies vaccination) during their stay in China. These vaccination certificates (or “vaccination red books”) will be needed to export pets outside of China, relocate to other Chinese cities and to renew registration licenses for dogs.
Export Pet From China
- China allows one pet to be imported or exported per passport holder. If you have multiple pets, contact ICVS or a professional pet relocation agent (contact information below) for information on how to legally take your pets out of China.
**Please note that the Beijing Quarantine Bureau is now advising all departing pet owners to take their pets for the mandatory exit health examination at 10-12 days before the departure date (previously, the recommendation was to bring pets for the exit health examination at 7-10 days before departure). If you are taking pets to the EU, please take pets for the exit health examination at 12-days before departure date. The Quarantine Bureau is facing very high volumes with pet departures this summer and is also implementing a new computer system which is resulting in longer processing times for the exit permits.
Pet owners coming from other cities and provinces who will exit China from Beijing:
Please contact ICVS immediately for new Quarantine Bureau export and vaccination requirements if your pet resides outside of Beijing but will be undergoing the mandatory international exit health examination at the Beijing Quarantine Bureau at 10-12 days before departure.
Preparing Pets to Export from China
The three simple steps for clearing exit requirements for pet owners based in Beijing are summarized below:
Step 1: Rabies Vaccinations and the Official Vaccination Immunity Certificate
Complete rabies vaccination and obtain the official PRC Animal Health and Immunity Certificate certifying the pet is rabies vaccinated at least 30-days before departure date but not more than 12-months before departure
Animals departing China must be rabies vaccinated at an officially designated animal rabies vaccination hospital in the PRC and must have the official “PRC (Beijing) Animal Health and Immunity Certificate” (e.g., vaccination red book) with the stamp/chop of the issuing hospital.
Owners are recommended to keep good records of the pet’s local vaccinations upon adoption or arrival in Beijing. By law, all dogs must be rabies vaccinated annually in the PRC. Cats should also receive annual rabies vaccinations. China does not recognize the 2- or 3-year rabies vaccines from other countries so pets are required to be vaccinated annually. ICVS is an officially designated animal rabies vaccination hospital in the PRC and can provide legal rabies, distemper and all other vaccinations for all pets and issue the official Animal Health and Immunity Certificate (e.g., vaccination red book) required for pet export.
Step 2: Health Examination and Official Exit Health Certificate
Undergo the mandatory official exit health examination for your pet at 10-12 days before departure date at the government run Entry-Exit Inspection & Quarantine Bureau animal hospital (If going to EU countries, please take pets for the exit health examination at 12-days before departure date)
After your pets have completed rabies and all other vaccinations and have obtained the official “vaccination red books,” pet owners may take their pets for the official exit health examination at the designated government Quarantine Bureau animal hospital 10-12 days prior to the animal’s departure date from China. Pets will undergo a brief physical examination that will include mandatory blood tests and stool checks. Once completed, you will be issued a “Beijing International Companion Animal Health Inspection Certificate” (Official Health Certificate), which is required to then obtain the official “Animal Exit Permit” from the Entry-Exit Inspection and Quarantine Bureau. Fees will be charged for the examination and the tests. Owners should bring the pet, the vaccination red book, passport or photocopy (one passport per pet), rabies antibody titre test report (for EU and other countries that require the test) and cash (e.g., RMB 1200.00+ per pet) at the time of the visit.
Kindly note that in November 2011, the Quarantine Bureau's animal hospitals that perform the official exit health examinations began scanning all animals for microchips at the time of the exit health exam. Many countries require microchips for pet import. The microchips required are the European Union ISO 11784 /11785 standard microchips. Please note that this microchip requirement is NOT a national or Beijing municipal government or an Entry/Exit Quarantine and Inspection Bureau requirement. Requirements are set by the officially designated Quarantine Bureau animal hospitals who are authorized to perform the official exit health examinations for pets exiting China (e.g., Guan Shang animal hospital in Beijing and Shenpu animal hospital in Shanghai). ICVS can help microchip all pets and has universal microchip scanners to ensure microchip readability of already microchipped pets.
The PRC Quarantine Bureau is responsible for the export of all live animals, including livestock for food production, so the overarching principle is that all live animals for export, including dogs and cats, are relatively healthy, vaccinated in line with PRC and destination country requirements, free of infectious diseases, free of internal and external parasites, and free of contagious skin infections.
In addition to checking for microchips and annually required rabies, distemper and other vaccines for dogs and cats, the Quarantine Bureau animal hospitals will perform blood tests to check for systemic infection, contagious viral diseases common among dogs and cats, stool tests to check for internal and microscopic parasites, blood test to check for heartworm antigen parasite in dogs, and physical examination of all pets to check overall health condition and for infectious skin diseases and external parasites.
We strongly recommend all pet owners to bring their pets to ICVS for an annual wellness and pre-departure healthcare screening to ensure that pets are healthy, fully vaccinated, infection free and parasite free BEFORE taking pets to the Quarantine Bureau’s officially designated animal hospital for the mandatory exit health examination at 10-12 days before departure. Pets that have non-contagious and non-infectious diseases such as diabetes, renal disease, thyroid disease, heart disease, dental disease, non-transmissible skin diseases (e.g., demodex), tumors, and even cancers, are permitted to exit China.
For most pets, the exit health examination at the Quarantine Bureau will be smooth and the pet will be approved for export. However, every year there are pets with previously unknown or undetected health conditions who are taken directly to the Quarantine Bureau animal hospital for the mandatory exit health examination and do not receive exit permits required for export. Pet export is not guaranteed and is a pet-by-pet decision made by the government veterinarians of the Quarantine Bureau at the time of the official exit health examination.
When taking pets for the mandatory exit health examination, please go early in the morning when the Quarantine Bureau’s Guan Shang animal hospital opens. Appointments are not accepted. If you are not proficient in Mandarin, it may be helpful to use a professional pet relocation company that can help you take your pet door-to-door and manage the exit health examination process at the Quarantine Bureau (see below for recommended professional pet relocation agents).
The health certificate is usually issued within 2-business days after the examination and is valid for 7-days from the issue date. If the health certificate is not taken to apply for an exit permit before the expiration date, the health examination must be repeated.
Step 3: “Animal Exit Permit”
Apply for the exit permit from Entry-Exit Inspection & Quarantine Bureau after receiving the official exit health certificate
Owners may present the exit health certificate to obtain the official “Animal Exit Permit.” The Entry-Exit Inspection and Quarantine Bureau has a satellite office on the second floor of the Quarantine Bureau’s animal hospital where owners may apply for the exit permit. Bring your “vaccination red book,” the exit health certificate and your passport (or passport photocopy). It is not necessary to bring your pet to apply for the exit permit. The exit permit fee is about RMB 200.00 and is now processed in 5-6 business days and is valid for 14-days once issued. Please confirm latest regulations with the Entry-Exit Inspection and Quarantine Bureau for exit requirements and exit permit validity periods. Government agencies may revise policies at any time without prior notice. Once you receive the exit permit, pet owners have 14-days to take pets overseas.
The Entry-Exit Inspection & Quarantine Bureau’s office hours are: Monday to Friday, 9:00AM to 11:30 AM and 1:30 PM to 4:30 PM (Closed for ALL public and national holidays).