South Africa Pet Passport Regulations
Unless otherwise stated, the regulations below apply to domestic dogs and cats. Owners of other pets should refer to item 10.
You must first file an Import Application for your pet with the Director of Animal Health. Following receipt of the completed Import Application form, a Veterinary Import Permit will be issued and sent directly to you.
Unless your pet is entering South Africa directly from Australia, New Zealand, Northern Ireland and the United Kingdom, a rabies vaccination administered not less than 30 days and not more than 12 months prior to entry is required. The vaccination should be administered after the microchip is implanted.
If your pet is a dog, it must be tested for the following diseases by blood tests: Brucella canis, Trypanosoma evansi, Babesia gibsoni, Dirofilaria immitis, and Leishmania.
Blood Titer Test
South Africa does not require a Blood Titer Test (RNATT) for pets entering from any country.
Within 10 days of entry, a USDA or CFIA licensed veterinarian will complete the Veterinary Certificate for South Africa for endorsement by the USDA or CFIA if traveling from the United States or Canada. If you are traveling from another country, the Governing Authority from your country responsible for the import and export of animals should endorse the forms.
Post Import Procedures/Quarantine
Upon arrival in South Africa, you will present the Veterinary Certificate and the approved Import Permit to the quarantine officer. Cats with the original versions of a properly completed Import Permit and Veterinary Health Certificate will not be subject to quarantine.
Dogs will be subject to a minimum of 14 days of quarantine unless they are entering from the following countries and are accompanied by the properly completed paperwork: United States, Canada, Argentina, Austria, Australia, Belgium, Botswana, Bulgaria, Comoros, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungry, Iceland , Ireland, Israel, Italy, Latvia, Lesotho, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malawi, Malta, Namibia, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Northern Ireland, Norway, Portugal, Poland, Reunion, Romania, Spain, Slovakia, Slovenia, Swaziland, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom, and Zimbabwe.
Entering South Africa by Air
Dogs that will be quarantined on arrival in South Africa may only be imported into South Africa via Johannesburg or Cape Town International Airports. Dogs and cats that are being imported from countries not subject to quarantine can also be imported into South Africa via Durban International Airport. Dogs and cats will not be allowed to enter South Africa via any other airport or port of entry (including land border posts).
In cases where the quarantine of animals is required due to lack of proper paperwork, you must contact the Quarantine Officer at the port of entry prior to arrival. The Quarantine Officer will arrange the reservation for accommodation at the Quarantine Station and must complete the applicable part of the application form.
Your pet can fly to South Africa in-cabin if airline policies permit it, however, it will still be classified as air cargo and airline personnel must take possession of your pet when you land to process through veterinary inspection.
Puppies and Kittens
Puppies and kittens under three months of age do not need to be vaccinated for rabies. However, puppies and kittens less than 3 months of age can only travel to South Africa if the mother of the puppy or kitten has been vaccinated for rabies more than 30 days before and less than 12 months before the birth of the puppy or kitten. These pets must be vaccinated for rabies after arrival in South Africa at 3 months of age and proof of the vaccination must be presented to the South African Veterinary Authorities.
Currently, South Africa does not currently ban any breed of dog.
Exporting Pets Living in South Africa
Veterinary officials will need to see all documentation required for your pet's destination country.
Rabbits are not permitted to enter South Africa. Birds, invertebrates, tropical fish, reptiles, amphibia, mammals such as rodents are not subject to requirements of rabies vaccination, but may have to meet other requirements and should have a health certificate to enter South Africa. Pet owners are strongly advised to seek further information from the relevant authority of their country and/or that of the country of destination.
If your pet is not a dog, cat or ferret, and especially if it is a turtle or parrot, you should verify that it is not protected under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITIES). You will need to apply for additional permits if this is the case. Over 180 countries participate and enforce CITIES regulations. .
Need More Advice?
To the best of our ability, we ensure that recommendations given on PetTravel.com reflect the current regulations. We cannot predict how a given country may enforce these regulations. Noncompliance may result in the need to make arrangements to put your pet into quarantine at your expense, return your pet to the country of origin, or euthanize your pet. We suggest that you minimize the disruptions that may occur by following the rules of the country you are visiting.
Further detail on import permits, costs, tests and procedures are available at minimal cost at PetTravelStore.com. We also stock all the equipment and accessories you will need for traveling with your pet. Same day shipping Monday through Friday until 4:00 PM EST.