Firstly, make sure that you know all of the requirements for travel. We’re pretty lucky in this respect – as long as they’ve had their annual vaccinations, a microchip and an inoculation for Rabies, dogs and cats can travel to most countries from Hong Kong without quarantine. This includes North America, South America, Continental Europe and the United Kingdom.

However, there are some countries that have special requirements, notably Australia, New Zealand, Singapore and Japan. These countries generally require a blood test up to 6 months in advance of travel, otherwise a pet will be subjected to a stay in quarantine.  For more information on the requirements for these countries click on the link to the government websites below:

Sending Pets to Australia

Sending Pets to Singapore

Sending Pets to Japan

Sending Pets to New Zealand

The requirements do vary a little between each country, so I’d definitely recommend contacting a pet travel agent if you think a trip in the future is likely. Some people on very mobile schedules also choose to do an export blood test every year or two, just to make sure their pet can travel at any time without delay or quarantine restrictions.

Note that all animals are required to have a health examination by a veterinarian within the week prior to travel, who will issue a health certificate that certifies your pet is safe to travel, and the airline will need to be notified in advance to make arrangements for your pet. Normally a pet export company will handle these details.

If you’re taking your dog or cat for a holiday or a trip under 6 months duration to any country and then returning to Hong Kong, your pet will need to have a rabies blood test and you’ll need to apply for a Hong Kong Re-entry Permit. This is commonly called a Pet Passport – although strictly speaking it’s not the same passport as you and I hold.

Note: there are also special rules for some breeds of dog and cat, especially those with short faces like Bulldogs, Pugs and Persian cats. They can travel, but they do need special arrangements.

Dog Cat Suitcase