Cats - Page 2

Canada - Cats

Cats

Domestic cats entering Canada do not have to be quarantined. If you are importing a cat three (3) months of age or older, you must meet the following import requirements. Cats less than three (3) months of age are exempt from the import requirements. The import requirements apply to pet cats entering Canada permanently, as well as pet cats passing through Canada on their way to a final destination.

Import requirements will vary depending on the age of the cat and the rabies status of the country of export.

Importing domestic cats three (3) months of age or older from countries recognized by Canada as being rabies free

Cats may enter Canada if they are accompanied by rabies certification. This means they must have:

  • a rabies vaccination certificate;
  • OR
  • a veterinary certificate declaring that the cat originates from a country recognized by Canada as being rabies-free.

The rabies vaccination certificate must:

  • be written in English or French;
  • be issued and signed by a licensed veterinarian;
  • identify the animal (as in breed, colour, and weight);
  • state that the animal is vaccinated against rabies;
  • indicate the date of vaccination;
  • indicate the trade name and the serial number of the licensed vaccine; and
  • specify the duration of immunity (otherwise, it will be considered valid for one year from the date of vaccination).

The veterinary certificate must:

  • be written in English or French;
  • be issued and signed by a licensed veterinarian;
  • identify the animal (as in breed, colour, and weight);
  • state that the animal has been in the exporting country since birth or for at least six (6) months immediately preceding shipment to Canada; and
  • be accompanied by documentation from a competent government authority*, stating that rabies has not occurred in the country of origin for at least six (6) months immediately preceding the animal's shipment to Canada.

*Note: a competent government authority refers to a veterinary agency or other government agency that manages a country's animal health and welfare situation, as well as handles the responsibility of veterinary certification for the purposes of international trade. The document can be either:

  • a letter issued on the competent government authority's letterhead, which must be dated, stamped and signed by an official of the competent government authority in the country of origin; or
  • a letter by the licensed veterinarian who issued the certificate, which must be endorsed by the competent government authority.

The import requirements also apply to cats that were originally from Canada and are returning to Canada from a rabies-free country.

The import requirements also apply to cats leaving a country that imposed quarantine, if the cat leaves before that quarantine period is completed.

Importing domestic cats three (3) months of age or older from countries not recognized by Canada as being rabies free

Cats may enter Canada if they are accompanied by:
a rabies vaccination certificate.

The rabies vaccination certificate must:

  • be written in English or French;
  • be issued and signed by a licensed veterinarian;
  • identify the animal (as in breed, colour, and weight);
  • state that the animal is vaccinated against rabies;
  • indicate the date of vaccination;
  • indicate the trade name and the serial number of the licensed vaccine; and
  • specify the duration of immunity (otherwise, it will be considered valid for one year from the date of vaccination).

Additional cat import information

Canada does not require a waiting period between the time the animal is vaccinated for rabies and the time the animal is imported into Canada.

If the cat does not meet the import requirements relating to rabies certification, owners will be required, at their own expense, to do the following:

have the animal vaccinated against rabies within a specified period of time; and
provide the vaccination record to a Canadian Food Inspection Agency office.

If you are importing a non-domestic cat, you must meet additional import requirements before the non-domestic cat enters the country. Please refer to the Automated Import Reference System (AIRS) for more information.


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