Flying Your Dog to Australia – What You Need to Know
Whether you want to bring your dog on vacation with you or you’re moving, can you fly your dog to Australia? The short answer is yes. Let’s talk about everything you need to know about flying with your dog to Australia.
Check with Your Veterinarian Before You Make Plans
Before you plan to leave your country, talk to your vet first. Whether you’ve flown on an airplane with your dog before or not, you want to make sure that your pup is mentally and physically ready for flying.
Your vet will be able to help you out with whatever you and your dog need to prepare for the flight to Australia.
For example, the vet will also help you decide if you should take your dog at all. If your doggo is easily anxious or gets separation anxiety, they might be better off staying at home with a well-trusted professional dog sitter.
However, if your dog is healthy enough, your vet can ensure they’re up to date on their vaccinations to meet the airline and Australian requirements.
Every airline has different requirements as well. So, be sure to do your research beforehand so that you can discuss with your vet what your dog will need to board the plane and make their way to Australia.
For example, your dog may need the following:
- Blood tests
- Health certificates
- Microchips (for identification)
Remember, some of these requirements may change from time to time. Also, the conditions will depend on where you’re headed and how old your dog is.
What are the Requirements to Get into Australia
The requirements to bring a dog into Australia will vary, depending on where you’re coming from.
For example, your dog will need their rabies shot, other vaccinations, and health certificates.
You can check out the Australian Government’s website to see what you need to do to bring your dog into the country. You can find what group you fall into (depending on where you’re coming from) and find step-by-step guides on what you need to do.
For example, your dog will need to be microchipped. The microchip needs to be an ISO number and will be scanned upon arriving in Australia. Their microchip number should be listed on all documentation for your dog for them to be permitted access to the country.
In addition, you’ll need to get the appropriate vaccinations. For example, your dog needs to have their rabies shot. However, a rabies shot isn’t required depending on which group you fall into.
In addition to a microchip and a potential rabies shot, your pup will also need the following:
- An import permit
- A health certificate approved by the USDA or CFIA
- Internal and external parasite treatments at least five days before leaving
- Needs to have lived in one of the areas classified within the groups for a minimum of six months
In addition, you’ll need to plan for your dog to quarantine. To prevent unwanted diseases in dogs from spreading throughout Australia, they’ll need to quarantine for ten days, no matter how healthy your dog is.
So, once you get your import permit, make sure to call them so you can make a reservation for your doggo to quarantine.
Flying Your Dog to Australia – Banned Breeds in Australia
Unfortunately, some breeds are not allowed to be in Australia. For example, this country doesn’t allow the following breeds:
- Dogo Argentino
- Fila Brazileiro
- Japanese Tosa
- Pit Bull Terrier
- American Pit Bull
- Perro de Presa Canario (or the Presa Canario)
- American Staffordshire Terrier
Crossbreeds are okay, but not these purebreds. However, wolf and dog hybrids aren’t allowed in the country. These breeds include the following:
- Czechoslovakian Wolfdog
- Czechoslovakian Vlcak Saarloos Wolfdog
- Saarloos Wolfhound Lupo Italiano
- Italian Wolfdog
- Kunming Wolfdog
How Your Dog Will Fly
They have to go through the Melbourne Airport when flying to Australia and can only fly in the cargo hold.
According to the International Air Transport Association, dogs may travel better in the cargo hold. This area is well-ventilated, dark, and quiet. So, it may be less stressful for your dog.
You are 100% responsible for your dog during the flight. If you have a layover or a connecting flight, you’ll need to care for your dog.
This includes bringing them out to go the bathroom, stretch their legs, or have a water break. Then, you need to get them back into their carrier and onboard in time for the next flight.
The hottest months of the year in Australia are between December and February. So, they do not allow dogs to travel through flight during these times. Also, the quarantine area is closed for a few weeks during this time.
Flying Your Dog to Australia – Your Dog’s Comfort Comes First
Flying on an airplane is scary for most humans, let alone dogs who don’t understand what a plane is, how it works, or where they’re going.
For instance, they may feel safer and more comfortable in the cargo hold, but if your dog has separation anxiety or is afraid to try new things, the dark cargo hold (and being away from you) may stress them out further.
Since you’re going to Australia, your pup won’t have a choice but to go into the cargo hold. So, you’ll want to work with your vet to ensure that your dog is fully prepared.
So, here are some tips to ensure that your dog is prepared to fly:
- Purchase plane tickets that have as few layovers and connections as possible
- Choose arrival times to avoid extreme heat or cold
- Train your dog to get used to their carrier
- Discuss any anxiety needs with your vet beforehand
- If your dog goes into the cabin, check-in as late as possible
- If your dog goes into the cargo hold, check-in as early as possible
- Walk your dog before your flight and immediately after arrival
- Avoid food and drink a few hours before the flight
These tips will help reduce stress for your dog, and they’ll also keep them as healthy as possible.
Overall, you want to aim to keep the flight as safe and positive as possible for your pup. First, however, you need to keep up with the country and state you’re entering and the airline’s requirements.
Should You Fly With Your Dog to Australia?
Flying with your dog to Australia can be a process. So, if you have plans to leave the country, then you’ll want to begin prepping your dog with your vet as soon as possible. Otherwise, you’ll need to make plans with a professional dog sitter.