Pet Travel Question: Moving from the Rabies-Free UK

Name: Kouroush
Number of Pets: 2
Pet Type: dogs
Pet Breed: German Shepherd
From: UK
To: Orange County, USA

Good morning! My wife and I are relocating from the UK in February with our two German Shepherds. Our babies are 12 & 6 years old; they have some health issues and obviously we are concerned about how the move will affect them. Our main concern is the Rabies Vaccination. We have heard this has to be done within a certain time period after our arrival. As you are aware, UK is a Rabies FREE Country. We don’t feel that due to their health issues and the age of our oldest, this will be safe for them and our local vet agrees!! I would be grateful for any advice and guidance you can provide... As you can imagine, their health is at the top of our list of priorities and we need help and advice on how to proceed safely. Kind regards, - Kouroush

Hello Kouroush,

Thank you for contacting us with your pet travel question! We're happy to help you consider your options and clarify anything we can.

First of all, review the US Pet Import Requirements for a rundown of the rules. Since the UK is a rabies free country, your dogs can enter the US without undergoing a rabies vaccination first. As far as whether or not they'll need one later on, there has been some recent debate in California regarding rabies exemptions for cases such as yours, but in general all dogs are required to be vaccinated. Please continue to discuss the issue with your veterinarian and contact the local authorities in the area to which you'll be moving to find out more about your choices.

Good luck, and please contact us if you'd like to speak to a Pet Relocation Specialist about your move!


PetRelocation Team




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