Importing Pets into China
This information is based on recent interviews with pet owners who have brought their pets into China. It is not an official guideline and should be considered only as a reference for pet owners importing pets.
Pet owners are allowed to bring in one pet per passport. You will need a “Z-visa” (official employment visa) to import your pet. You will need the following documents to clear health & quarantine requirements.
- 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
You should probably start by asking your veterinarian back home what documents you need to export your pet. Here is an example of the process to export pets out of the USA:
Based on the experiences of pet owners’ from the United States, owners may first contact their veterinarians to inquire about official export forms. Most veterinarians’ offices have these forms available or these offices can tell owners where to obtain them. Once these forms are filled out and your veterinarian has signed off on them, you may send these forms to the local state office of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). Your local state USDA will provide you with the export certificate and the official rabies certificate for a small fee (the USDA has an office in each state capital). It is a relatively straightforward and easy process but owners do need to give themselves sufficient time to get the paperwork done (recommend getting started at least one-two months before departure).
China requires that animals coming into the country be rabies vaccinated at least 1 month prior to arrival (but no more than 12 months prior). These guidelines may change at any time so best to check with your relocation company as soon as you know that you may be moving to China. China does not currently have a microchipping requirement for imported pets, but this could change in the future.
There is a legal requirement in China that pets brought into the country undergo 30-days quarantine. Pets are quarantined at a government run facility and owners will be charged for the quarantine. Many owners who have used experienced relocation companies have in the past, been able to avoid the lengthy quarantine stays (reduced quarantine to under one-week or even overnight). However, the strict enforcement of the mandatory 30-days quarantine is now standard in Beijing. There is a “home quarantine” option but pet owners who have brought in their pets recently have been met with quarantine officials at the airport who have been insistent on requiring the full 30-days mandatory quarantine. Quarantine officials no longer allow home quarantine unless there is some special reason (e.g., very elderly animal or animal with medication requirements, etc., that the officials may find too difficult to handle). We have pet owners who have reported that even their very elderly pets (e.g., 18-year old cat) were put into mandatory quarantine.
The Beijing quarantine facilites 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 PetTour.LTD for a comprehensive examination to ensure their health (especially if any time was spent in quarantine) and to get them registered so that PetTour 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.
Please do not hesitate to contact us at Pet Tour WebSite with any questions on importing/exporting pets, pet registration requirements and any general health care concerns:
PetTour (China) Co., Ltd.
Tel: (86 10)5979.2414/2434
Fax: (86 10)5979.2434
Address:Fur&Leather Mansion,No.18 Jiangtai West Rd,Chaoyang District, Beijing,China.
APPOINTMENT HOURS: MONDAY – SATURDAY, 8:00 AM TO 8:00 PM AND SUNDAY, 10:00 AM TO 7:00 PM