Time and again, we get calls from dog owners asking if we also provide dog relocation services. While we at Movers Singapore do not currently provide this service, we feel that a blog post on how to relocate your dog overseas will be useful for both our clients and readers alike.
Check the Dog Import Requirements
The import requirements will vary from country to country. As the importing country’s primary concern is usually the spread of animal borne diseases such as rabies,
these requirements usually include having a Veterinary Health Certificate, the required vaccination, medical test results or even quarantine period.
Hence the first step is always to check and familiarize yourself with these requirements. How? Simply check the website of the relevant importing country’s government agency. They will usually have the information readily available there. For example, AVA has got very detailed information on importing dogs and cats to Singapore on their website.
Get Your AVA Export License
To apply for the above license, simply visit the LicenseOne (AVA) website.
Before applying, do ensure that your dog’s vaccination records are up to date and that it has a valid dog license.
Obtaining the Veterinary Health Certificate
To obtain this, you will need to have your dog examined by a licensed vet. If required by the importing country, you will also need to have your vet run the required laboratory test as well as have an updated vaccination record. Your vet will then be able to issue you a veterinary health certificate.
Some countries will have a prescribed veterinary health certificate template. If so, you will need to visit their website to download this template and bring it along for your vet to fill during the examination. Once this templated health certificate has been completed and signed by your vet, you can get it endorsed by AVA by visiting the LicenseOne (AVA) website.
If you require an official e-issued watermarked veterinary health certificate, you can also apply for it from the same LicenseOne website. Do ensure you have your veterinary health certificate (signed by your vet) and required laboratory test results plus vaccination records ready before applying. Do note that this watermarked e-certificate, once issued, is valid for only 7 days.
Some countries will require that the veterinary health certificate issued by your vet be endorsed by the AVA. If so, you will have to visit the AVA Service Centre at:
52 Jurong Gateway Road #06-01
Please do not forget to bring along the certificate issued by your vet for endorsement.
Some countries will require a pre-export examination. If so, you can book an appointment for this examination through the AVA iFast website.
The examination is to be done at the Changi Animal and Plant Quarantine station, which thankfully is located near Changi Airport i.e. at:
GateC7 Airport Cargo Road
Changi Airfreight Centre
Do ensure you have at least 4 hours of buffer time (before your flight departs) to ensure you do not miss your flight.
Transporting to Ground Handling Agent
Once the above steps are all completed, you’ll have to transport your dog, crated and together with all required export documents to the ground handling agent. In Singapore, the 2 ground handling agents are SATS, located at:
SATS Terminal 5
20 Airport Boulevard
Singapore Changi Airport
and DNATA, located at:
DNATA Outbound Terminal
50 Airport Boulevard
Singapore Changi Airport
Other Considerations on Relocating your Dog
Paperwork aside, the following are some issues you will want to think or run through…
Length of Time Abroad
If you are abroad for only a few months, do you even want to relocate your dog? Some countries require quarantine and the quarantine period can be as long as 6 months. If you are away for a year or less, will you be better of having someone in Singapore care for your dog during this period?
Airline and Other Rules
Sometimes, different airlines may have different rules when it comes to transporting dogs. Also different states within the same country may have different importing rules for dogs. You will need to check these too.
Have a Suitable Dog Carrier
If you are using a Singapore pet relocation service, they will usually provide a suitable dog carrier. Even so, you will want to ensure for yourself that the carrier has enough room for your dog to stand and move around. It’s no fun being locked in a crate for the duration of the flight; the least we can do is ensure the crate is not too small.
That said, these container requirements by IATA are worth reading
Properly Label Your Dog Carrier
Luggage can get lost or delayed. Unfortunately, so can your dog. Hence it is always safer to stick a prominent address label on your dog carrier. You will want to include your dog’s name, your address, contact number plus his feeding instructions, just in case.
Research the Country of Destination
Your research should not be just about the required import documentation. You will want to know the living conditions in your country of destination and if it is conducive for your dog. You should also find out about the diseases common in your destination country and make sure your dog is vaccinated for them. Your family vet should be able to advise you on such matters.
This comprehensive guide on how to relocate your dog overseas is produced, courtesy of Movers Singapore, your preferred partner when it comes to moving services in Singapore. If you find this article useful, please feel free to share it on social media with your dog lover friends.