Moving to Canada with Your Pet: A Comprehensive Guide

22 December, 2023

Moving to Canada with Your Pet: A Comprehensive Guide

If you plan to move to Canada and have a beloved pet as part of your family, remember that including them from the beginning in your plans is essential. The international journey of pets to Canada involves deadlines, documentation, vaccinations, and health checks. All the steps must be completed satisfactorily to ensure your pet can travel with you. Here's everything you need to know:\


Assessing the Move for You and Your Pet


Before making any decisions, it's crucial to consider the impact of this move on you and your pet. Carefully evaluate some key points:
  • Health: Does your pet have any special conditions? What is their age? Remember that the journey will be long and potentially tiring.
  • Financial Aspect: Besides the cost of transportation, it's essential to consider that maintaining a pet in Canada involves expenses, including monthly fees and good pet health insurance.
  • Rules in Each Province: Each city and province in Canada may have specific regulations regarding breeds, microchipping, and even the number of allowed animals.
  • Daily Care: If you'll be out of the house during the day, studying and working, who will care for and provide companionship for your pet?


Transporting Your Pet from you country to Canada

Now that you've decided to bring your pet with you to Canada, it's time to consider some essential points:
  • Microchip:
Unlike most countries, implanting a microchip in your pet is not mandatory when travelling to Canada. However, it's highly recommended as microchips are invaluable for identifying your pet if they get lost or stolen. Ensure the microchip is compatible with ISO standards, and keep your contact information current.
  • Declaration of Import:
Canadian regulations for importing pets require you to declare the purpose of the import before bringing your cat or dog into the country. There are three categories of import, each with different rules.
Personal Imports include pet dogs and cats and require the pet owner to accompany the animal to the country.
  • Commercial Imports: This category involves sending dogs and cats for sale, adoption, breeding, exhibitions, scientific research, etc.
  • Assistive Imports: Intended for service dogs.


Traveling with Your Pet on the Plane:

When travelling with your pet, the big question is whether you will handle the process on your own or use the services of an international pet transportation company. Each airline has different rules for pet transportation. Some allow small dogs and cats to travel in the cabin, while others accommodate them in the cargo hold. Consider your pet's weight and size when choosing the best option. 


International Pet Transportation Companies:


Some specialized companies take care of the entire process, from initial documentation to landing. If you choose this option, research companies with good reviews, such as Carga Viva Export and Sysbrac.


Care When Buying Tickets:


Reserve your pet's spot on the same flight when purchasing your ticket. Due to the limit on the number of animals per flight, check by phone if your pet's ticket is available.
If there's a domestic connection, buy that leg separately from the international one. For large or high-energy breeds, invest in a sturdy kennel. If your pet is a puppy, check the minimum age allowed by the airline.


Knowing Your Country's Category:


The rules for transporting pets to Canada vary depending on the country of origin. Canada recognizes two types of countries based on rabies status:
  • Rabies-Free Countries: These include, for example, the United Kingdom, Australia, Japan, and others.
  • Other Countries: Encompass all others, including Brazil.


Up-to-Date Vaccinations:


Before the journey, dogs and cats travelling to Canada must be vaccinated against rabies. Ensure that your pet's vaccination record contains all necessary information and that an accredited veterinarian issues the health certificate.


Attention on Arrival in Canada:


Pets arriving in Canada can disembark at any international airport in the country. Inspection by the Canadian Border Services Agency is standard and ensures that all animals are healthy. Health and rabies certificates will be checked, and any signs of illness will result in an evaluation by a veterinarian at the owner's expense.


Living in Canada with Your Pet:


In most cities, Canada is highly pet-friendly, and dogs and cats are common. There are several pet parks, and these faithful companions are welcome in most public places. Bringing your pet to Canada can be rewarding as they are a fundamental part of the family and will make your experience in the country even more special. Remember to consider all the necessary steps and care to ensure a smooth transition for you and your pet in this new journey in Canada.
If you want to immigrate to Canada with your pet, we can help you! Contact our consultants and book an appointment! Take advantage of our online assessment today!
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