CDC Bans Dog Import from over 113 Countries

CDC Bans Dog Import from over 113 Countries

Posted by Susan Smith on on 30th Jun 2021

CDC regulations for dogs entering the United States from countries classified as having a high risk of rabies are a real challenge.

Note: this blog post has been updated twice.

The Center for Disease Control in the United States has announced additional requirements on the import of all dogs who have visited, resided or cleared customs and entered countries with a high risk of rabies for the past 6 months. The ban goes into effect on July 14, 2021 and is currently estimated to last until July 2024. The deadline has already been extended twice.   

The CDC has announced these new regulations due to the high percentage of dogs that have been imported during the past year with incorrect or fraudulent documentation. Many of these dogs are imported from countries where rabies is not controlled according to the standards of the World Organization of Animal Health.

Permits will be issued only in special circumstances and travel is not an acceptable reason for a permit to be granted. Owners of pets who have plans to travel to high-rabies-risk countries should consider leaving their dog at home.

UPDATE: The CDC has issued an exception to the requirement for an import permit. If your pet your pet meets the following qualifications, then an import permit will not be required:

  • Has a rabies certificate proving a current rabies vaccination administered by a licensed veterinarian in the United States.
  • Has proof of a microchip.
  • Is at least 6 months old.
  • Is healthy upon arrival.
  • Enters the United States at an approved port of entry (JFK, LAX, ATL, MIA).

ANOTHER UPDATE: If your pet does not have a valid rabies titer test or the test was not administered a minimum of 28 days prior to import, then you can make a reservation for quarantine at an Animal Care Facility. Your pet will quarantined until results of a rabies titer test is received.

ANOTHER UPDATE:The CDC has issued the Microchip and Rabies Vaccination Record form for all dogs receiving their rabies vaccination in a high-risk country. The form must be completed by the veterinarian who administers the rabies vaccination. Rabies certificates will no longer be accepted. 

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