Help Me Move My Pet

New Zealand

Attention:  This information is to be used as general guidelines and may not be updated to meet the current requirements.  Before you travel, be sure to contact the appropriate authorities for your destination country.


The rules and requirements in this document are applicable to import from the United States. Dogs, Cats and other small animals imported into New Zealand must undergo import quarantine, in accordance with the Rabies Prevention Law.  On Condition that the following criteria have been fulfilled, the quarantine period for a dog or cat entering Nis 180 days.  150 of these days can be completed in the country of origin, however there is a mandatory 30-day quarantine for all live animals entering the country.

Before beginning the import procedures, make sure that your vet is approved by the Government Veterinarian Authority in the country of origin.   For example, if an animal is departing the United States, the vet will need to be USDA Accredited. 

Requirements in Summary:

210 Days Before Arrival

MICROCHIP IMPLANTING:  Animal must have (or obtain) microchip identification.  This must be done before the rabies vaccinations.  The only microchips that can be read in New Zealand are ISO 11784 and 11785 Standards.  For any other chips, you must bring your own microchip reader.

During import inspection at the time of arrival in New Zealand, if the microchip number is not confirmed or the microchip number is not the same as that on the inspection certificate, the animal will be subject to a 180-day quarantine period or returned to the country of origin.


After implant of the microchip, the animal receives a new rabies vaccination This must be “inactivated rabies vaccinations.”  Be sure to obtain certification of the period of validity for the particular vaccinations that you obtain (some are good for two years, others for only one).

180 Days Before Arrival:                

After the Rabies Vaccination, you must wait at least 3 weeks (but not more than a year) before your pet can receive a Rabies Neutralizing Antibody Titre test (FAVN or RFFTI) to ensure that the rabies vaccination has provided adequate rabies antibody levels and must be tested by a facility approved by the Government of New Zealand.  Your Vet will send these to the approved lab listed below.  Please have your vet call them before sending to make sure they are aware of the delivery and the destination location (New Zealand).  The results of the blood test must be 0.5 IU/ml or above.

Your vet will need to scan your pet’s microchip prior to the blood draw for the Titer/ FAVN Test.

The date in which blood was drawn for this test is when the 180-day quarantine countdown begins.  You may keep your  pet in the country of origin for 150 days and send at this time, exposing the animal to the minimum 30-day quarantine period.

This test result will remain valid for 1 year from the time the blood sample was taken.  If you need to repeat your Pet’s Titer Test you must re-test within a year of the initial Titer Test to demonstrate continuous protection against rabies and to avoid another lengthy wait before being eligible for entry into New Zealand.

The date of the blood sampling, the laboratory used, microchip number, and the test results shall be well noted on all health certificates.  The matching of these numbers is critical to its success.  Please double-check them!

Rabies Titer / FAVN-OIE Tests:  FAVN or Fluorescent Antibody Viral Neutralization (FAVN) Blood Test is to ensure that the rabies vaccinations have provided adequate rabies antibody levels and will need to be approved by an approved Government Facility  prior to export (i.e. the USDA).

To obtain a Rabies Titer/FAVN test:

Your vet will need to send a serum sample, accompanied by a completed FAVN Report Form, to the Kansas State University lab* to do the FAVN test. The Kansas State Lab will then send the FAVN Report Form with the results of the test back to the submitting clinic.

Rabies Laboratory

Kansas State University

2005 Research Park Circle

Manhattan, KS 66502

tel. 785-532-4483

fax 785-532-4474



If the FAVN test is approved:

The ‘Six Month Wait’ begins at the day of blood draw.

The results of the blood test must be 0.5 IU/ml or above in order to qualify for entry.

*Please call KSU prior to sending the blood to make sure they are aware of the delivery and the destination location.  We also suggest, prior to shipping the blood, that you ask how they want the blood container labeled and how they want it sent to them.  These labs do change their policy often, so its best to double check with them.

Once these results have been returned to either yourself or the vet, you can begin the process of applying for the required IMPORT PERMIT.  Please contact your Pet Relocation Agent at this time for further instruction.  Upon Receipt of the IMPORT PERMIT, an export date can be determined.

30 Days Before Arrival:                 

1. A second Titer test is required.  Using the same instructions as  listed above, a second Rabies Titer test is required. Whatever method was used for the first test, the same  method must be used for the second test.

2. Fecal Tests – All animals require two fecal exams at least 14 days apart using the sensitive flotation procedure and show negative results for hookworm eggs.  This test can be completed at the vet’s office and must be noted on export documents regarding dates performed and results.


Within 30 days of departure have your vet scan the animal’s microchip and draw blood for the following tests:

1. Ehrlichiosis – Your dog must produce a negative result using the Indirect Fluorescent Antibody Test at a dilution of 1:40. Within 24 hours of blood draw, treat with external parasite treatment against ticks.

2. Brucellosis – Your dog must produce a negative result by means of a serum agglutination test.  Once blood is collected for this test your dog must not be mated or inseminated prior to export.

3. Leptospirosis – Your dog needs to produce a negative result by means of a microscopic agglutination test to be eligible for import.  These results need to read less than 50% agglutination at a serum dilution of 1:100.  Dogs record a result of more than 1:100 but less than 1:800 can be re-tested 14 days or more after the first test.  These second results must also show a titre result of less than 1:800. Dogs that record a result of 1:800 or more are ineligible for import.

Note:  Vaccination against Leptospirosis is not recommended within 6 months of export, as your pet’s high antibody response will most likely result in it being ineligible for export to New Zealand.   

4. Heartworm – Your dog must produce a negative result on a Lab Report Form for Canine Heartworm.  This test can be run with the tests listed above. All original results will need to travel with the dog and will also need to be recorded on the Import Permit (Veterinary Certificate A).

21 Days Before Arrival:                

All animals must be treated for cestodes (tapeworm – Praziquantel/Dronsit)

14 Days Before Arrival:                  

All animals require a second Fecal Exam at this time.  The first fecal is done within 30 days of departure.

10 Days Before Arrival:                

All animals must be tested for babesia gibsoni.  This test is done by Texas A&M

Obtain a Health Certificate from your Vet within 10 days of departure.

This certificate must state that the animal(s) are in good health and OK to fly. 

4 Days Before Arrival:                  

1. Internal Parasite Treatment – Dogs and Cats must be treated with a product approved for the treatment of nematodes and cestodes e.g. Drontal.

2. External Parasite Treatment - Teat with medicines effective against ticks and fleas.  Note product and concentration.  Oral products, injections and medicated collars are not satisfactory, neither are products that rely on the parasite biting your pet.  Washes and rinses that prevent ticks and tick bites are acceptable.

The active ingredient, dose rate, and treatment date for the above treatments must be recorded on Veterinary Certificate A.

3. Final Vet Exam – Must be performed by an accredited vet. Vet Certificate A is to be completed at this time.  An international health certificate must also be issued at this time:  APHIS Form 7001.

All documents must be reviewed and endorsed by the USDA at this time.  Your Pet Relocation agent will have these final steps (within 4 days of departure) completed on your behalf.

Local Pet Resources

Want to be added to our listings?  Contact us!


Victory Square Veterinary Clinic: 179 Vanguard Street Nelson Phone: 03 546 9646

Stoke Veterinary Clinic: 214 Songer St Stoke Nelson PH:  03 547 7891

Carlyle Veterinary Clinic: 139 Carlyle Street Napier Phone: 06 835 1096

Groomers and Pet Supplies

Pet Mania: 45 Clyde Rd Browns Bay Auckland Phone: 09-478 2276

Pets Wonderland Shop: 27, BNZ Building, Central Tce Howick, Auckland Phone: 09 265 1358

Wet Pets & Country Pets: 729 Tremaine Avenue, Palmerston North Phone: 06 357 4441

uk2nz.co.uk, www.uk2nz.co.uk, is an information portal for UK residents interested in living and working in New Zealand.

Working in New Zealand.com, www.workingin-newzealand.com, provides a lot of information for those interested in working and living in New Zealand.

Immigration New Zealand, www.immigration.govt.nz, provided by the New Zealand Department of Labour, is a guide for foreigners immigrating to or living in New Zealand