Importing Pets From The UK

Article by
Bob Ghandour BVetMed LVI MRCVS Veterinary Consultant and Director of PetAirUK

Many people emigrate from the UK to Australia in search of a better life. Many people who move also take their pets with them. This is often the most worrying part of the move as this is often the first and only time that pets will embark on a plane journey. The team at Petair UK are perfectly poised to help with all aspects of the journey. Petair UK is run by vets and all of it’s team are veterinary trained professionals expert in all aspects of pets moving internationally.

The costs of moving a pet internationally will often exceed the cost for your own flight ticket and sometimes exceeds the cost for the whole family! Petair UK are uniquely placed to be able to offer the complete service by performing home visits to get all the veterinary aspects completed with the minimum of stress to your pets.

Pets travelling to Australia will need:

  • An import permit from Australia Quarantine to allow them to enter UK
  • DEFRA export paperwork to allow them to leave UK
  • Vaccinations
  • Blood samples (dogs only)
  • Final health check

Import permit: This is applied and paid for to allow us to reserve quarantine for your pet. The quarantine must be booked and reserved before your dog will be allowed onto the plane. Sydney availability is very good and often immediate. Melbourne quarantine usually has a waiting list of around 2 months and Perth quarantine has a waiting list of around 4 months. If you are planning to move elsewhere in Australia, then your pet will have to land and do the 30 days quarantine in one of these places. We can easily arrange for your pet to be collected from one of the quarantine stations and flown to wherever you are in Australia – just let us know and we can give you a cost for this. Quarantine fees have to be paid in Australia and are not included in the silver or the Gold costs – they are usually around $600-700 AUD per pet.

DEFRA export paperwork: This must be applied for from a local DEFRA office and will be sent to your vet (either your nominated vets with the silver service or us with the Gold service) around 7 days before the flight. Your nominated vet will fill this out at the final check stage and this paperwork will be checked and completed by the airport vet to ensure that it is correct before your pet lands in Australia.

Vaccinations: You pet will have to have vaccinations within 12 months and 14 days of the flight. We can do this (extra charges apply) with the Gold service or you can get you own vet to do it when the blood samples are done. Please be careful as some vets only do certain parts of this every other year, but for entry into Australia all fractions of this must be done within the 12 months before travel.

Blood sample (dogs only): Within 30 days of the flight date, your dog will have a blood sample for 4 different diseases – all of which are rare in UK. At this time the vet taking the blood sample must apply an anti-tick treatment – Frontline or Advantix. This blood sample is best done on day 26-28 before the flight rather than right on the 30 day margin, just in case there is any delay with the plane.

Final check: This must be done within 4 days of the flight date and is a check to ensure that your pet is fit to travel and is not got any obvious contagious diseases which may be taken into Australia. The vet doing this check must also worm your dog at this point. At the final check stage, the vet will complete the DEFRA export paperwork.

We will either meet you at the airport and you will bring the veterinary paperwork as detailed in the final confirmation email or we will collect our dog from your home (extra charges apply for home collection). We will have the flight paperwork and the crate. If you have opted for the Gold service, then we will have the veterinary paperwork, so you don’t have to worry about this.

We can do as little or as much of this process as you would like us to, so if there is anything you would like us to do, then please do let us know.  Moving country is a very stressful process for our human clients and we are happy to take some of this burden from you if you wish.

So if you are planning on the big move Downunder contact Bob at PetairUK