Tips for traveling with your dog abroad.
If youre planning on traveling to India with your dog, be aware that there are strict requirements for bringing pets into this country. For this reason it is essential that you start preparing well in advance of your departure.
You may bring a maximum of two dogs into India as excess baggage on your flight. Note that you cannot bring your dog to Bangalore, Hyderabad or Pune.
The following are some of the items that must be included on your preparation checklist, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) and IndiaMike.com, a website with tips for traveling in India. You should consult with your veterinarian and the consulate of India for additional information.
- A health certificate (APHIS Form 7001/International Health Certificate) must be completed and signed by a veterinarian who is certified by APHIS. The health certificate must also be stamped and approved by APHIS. The fee and processing time for the APHIS endorsement varies; contact the Veterinary Services Area Office in your state for more information. The certificate must be completed no more than 14 days before you arrive in India with your dog.
- If you are traveling from a country that is not free of rabies (such as the U.S., Canada or Europe), your dog must receive a rabies vaccination at least 30 days before your trip to India.
- You must obtain a No Objection Certificate (NOC) for your dog from the Animal Quarantine and Certification Service Station in India. This document can only be obtained in person, but you can arrange for a pet transport agent in India (such as Yashbans) to get it on your behalf. You will need to send the agent your dogs health certificate, a complete record of his vaccinations and a copy of your flight confirmation that indicates your arrival and departure dates. The NOC takes about five working days to obtain. You must carry this document with you at all times while you are in India.
- A microchip is not required (but many who travel with their dogs recommend one).
- Check your airline’s regulations for flying with pets. This is especially important if you are traveling during the summer. Many airlines do not allow animals in the cargo area between June and September. Short-snouted dogs are not allowed on some airlines. Some airlines allow small dogs to fly as passengers in the cabin; note that you will have to buy a separate ticket for your dog in advance of your flight.
- Make sure your crate meets your airline’s requirements, and affix a duplicate copy of the NOC to the outside of the crate.
Some tips for when you arrive in India.:
- If you are planning to travel by train, be sure to check whether dogs are allowed on board. Some trains have kennels and an attendant for dogs.
- You should not let your dog drink tap water. Water should be boiled before your dog drinks it.
Since vets are not available in all areas, its a good idea to pack a first-aid kit for your dog, and have your own vets email and phone number handy in case you have questions.