Summer Vacation with a Dog: Is It a Good Idea?

dogBringing Pets on Vacation Abroad

Dear PetRelocation,

We are traveling to Costa Rica this summer and we would like to take our dog with us. We will be there for two months so we'd like a round trip for our dog.

Is that possible? We'll be traveling from mid June to mid August.

Thank you,


Hi Emily,

Thanks for the question! Bringing your dog to Costa Rica will mean meeting the pet import requirements the country abides by. You can find an overview of that information here via the USDA. As you can see, you'll need a health certificate, rabies certificate, and your dog will need to be vaccinated against Leptospirosis.

You will also need to book flights with a pet friendly airline (we often use United to fly pets from the United States to Costa Rica) and also make sure you have the correct travel crate.

To come back to the United States, you'll need to look over these pet import requirements and make sure you're in alignment with them. Most notably, you'll need to obtain a vet health certificate issued within 10 days of travel to once again show the airline your dog is healthy and fit to fly.

If you're okay with dealing with the time and expense of traveling with your dog (it will be several hundred dollars when the two trips are all said and done) and you also think your dog will handle the experience without too much stress, it should be possible to bring him/her along with you.

That being said, when facing such a relatively short trip, many pet owners decide to leave their pets at home with a trusted pet sitter rather than deal with the effort that international travel demands. In most cases, it's better for the dog to stay home in a familiar environment than spend hours on a plane.

It's up to you, of course, and if you'd like to speak to us further, we're available to talk. We also recommend talking to your vet about any concerns you may have.

Hope this helps, Emily! Again, please let us know if we can be of further service.


Pet Transport Question Details:

Name: Emily
Number of Pets: 1
Pet Type: Dog
Pet Breed: Lab/Border Collie mix
From: Los Angeles, CA, USA
To: Costa Rica


Need help moving your pets abroad? Contact us to discuss your safe pet shipping options.


PetRelocation Team




United States, Costa Rica
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