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Guidelines for the Importation of Dogs and Cats into Jamaica -The Animals Diseases (Importation) Control (Amendment) Regulations, 2017


The Animals Diseases (Importation) Control (Amendment) Regulations, 2017 allows for the importation of dogs and cats directly into Jamaica from a Category 1 Listed Country (click here), in Part 1 of the First Schedule.


IMPORTANT INFORMATION FOR ALL IMPORTERS BEFORE BEGINNING THE PROCESS OF IMPORTATION

  1. IMPORTERS ARE ADVISED THAT JAMAICA IS NOT A SIGNATORY TO AN INTERNATIONAL PET PASSPORT OR INTERNATIONAL PET TRAVEL SCHEME AND ANY DOG OR CAT ENTERING  JAMAICA INCLUDING HOLDERS OF A PET PASSPORT MUST COMPLY WITH ALL IMPORT REQUIREMENTS AS SET OUT IN THE ANIMAL (IMPORTATION) CONTROL (AMENDMENT) REGULATIONS 2017.
  2. Importers are advised to begin the importation process in a timely manner ensuring compliance with all laws and obligations.
  3. Importers are also urged to contact the Permit Office at (876) 977-2489 or (876) 977-2492  or via email at vsdpermits@gmail.com for assistance if the information provided below in the  STEPS IN THE IMPORTATION OF DOGS AND CATS is not clear.
  4. Every person wishing to import any dog or cat into Jamaica MUST:
  • First complete a Preliminary Application Form
  • Obtain a Veterinary Import Permit
  • Complete all tests, treatments and vaccination requirements (Click here for Test, Vaccination and Treatment Entry Requirements)
  • Obtain an Official Veterinary Export Health Certificate
  • Complete and Submit an Animal Landing Notification Form
  • Complete and Submit a Confirmation of Animal Arrival Form

   5. Dogs/ Cats arriving in Jamaica without a valid Veterinary Import Permit and all supporting documentation will be denied entry into the island.

ELIGIBILITY

Dogs and Cats

  • Can only be directly imported into Jamaica from the countries listed in Category 1 in Part 1 of the First Schedule.
  • For animals originating from countries NOT listed in Category 1 , Part 1 of the First Schedule, these animals must first be resident for a continuous period of at least (6) six months in a country listed in Category 1,Part I of the First Schedule BEFORE qualifying for entry.
  • Must be permanently identified with a microchip (ISO Standard 11784 or Annex A to Standard 11785. (This MUST be done prior to rabies vaccination). The microchip number must be recorded on all documentation.
  • Must NOT be under quarantine restrictions at the time of export to Jamaica;
  • Must NOT be pregnant nor be suckling young at the time of export.
  • A person shall NOT import any of the following dog breeds into Jamaica –
  1. Dogo Argentino;
  2. Fila Brasileiro;
  3. Japanese Tosa; or
  4. Pit Bull Terrier.
  • A person shall NOT import a hybrid dog or cat, that is to say, offspring of domestic dogs or cats crossed with other species into Jamaica.

STEPS IN THE IMPORTATION OF DOGS AND CATS

STEP 1 - PRELIMINARY APPLICATION FORM

  • The prospective importer or his/her agent must first download and complete the Preliminary Application Form (click here). Prospective importers will NOT be issued with a Veterinary Import Permit without prior approval of the Preliminary Application Form.
  • IMPORTERS ARE ADVISED NOT TO START ANY TESTS, VACCINATIONS OR TREATMENTS, REQUIRED FOR ENTRY INTO JAMAICA (WITH THE EXCEPTION OF RABIES VACCINATION AND FAVN TITRE TEST) UNTIL THEIR PRELIMINARY APPLICATION FORM HAS BEEN SUBMITTED AND APPROVED.
     
  • In order to complete the Preliminary Application Form all dog or cats must first;
    • Be permanently identified with a microchip (ISO Standard 11784 or Annex A to Standard 11785). Pets must FIRST be microchipped prior to being vaccinated for rabies
    • Rabies vaccination
      • Primary vaccination for puppies/ kittens greater than 3mths and less than 12mths old receiving the vaccination for the first time, will NOT qualify for entry until 180 days after the primary inoculation. A FAVN titre test MUST be done 30 days after the initial inoculation.
      • Primary vaccination for dogs 12mths and older, receiving the vaccination for the first time will not qualify for entry until 3mths after the inoculation. A FAVN titre test MUST be done 30 days after the inoculation.
      • Booster vaccination in older dogs. After receiving the booster vaccination a FAVN titre test MUST be done
  • An Attestation Form for Rabies vaccination and FAVN titre testing is included in Preliminary Application Form, which MUST be signed and stamped by an Official Veterinarian in the country of origin. Copies of the rabies certificate and FAVN test result must be submitted along with the Preliminary Application Form.
  • All documents must be submitted to the Veterinary Services Division (VSD), Permit Unit: vsdpermits@gmail.com or Fax: 1(876) 977-0885. The hard copy can also be submitted to the Permit Unit.

 


STEP 2 - APPLICATION FOR VETERINARY IMPORT PERMIT

  • Once the Preliminary Application Form has been approved, the applicant will be advised via email to apply online for a Veterinary Import Permit at the following website www.moatrade.gov.jm. For guidance in registering and applying online for a permit, please see the following link Click here for Steps in Applying for a Vet Import Permit. This is MANDATORY. Dogs and cats arriving at any port in Jamaica WITHOUT a valid Veterinary Import Permit WILL be denied entry in to the island
  • Once an applicant has applied for and received a Veterinary Import Permit, it will indicate all the necessary tests, vaccinations and treatment requirements that all dogs or cats must receive before entry into Jamaica.
  • For information on additional tests, vaccination and treatment entry requirements, please see link. (Click here for Test, Vaccination and Treatment Entry Requirements)

STEP 3 - OFFICIAL HEALTH CERTIFICATE FOR DOGS AND CATS TO JAMAICA

  • Once all tests, vaccinations and treatment have been completed, the Official Veterinarian in the country of origin will provide an applicant with an Official Veterinary Export Health Certificate. (Click here for Sample Export Health Certificate)

  • The original copy of the Official Veterinary Export Health Certificate for export, from the approved country of origin of the dog or cat (in accordance with Regulation 10) must accompany the dogs or cats along with a valid, Importer’s Copy of the Veterinary Import Permit upon arrival in Jamaica. The Official Veterinary Export Health Certificate must be completed by an Official Veterinarian of the country of origin; OR prepared by an Accredited Veterinarian of the country of origin.
  • The Official Veterinarian must complete, sign and stamp all pages of the Official Veterinary Export Health Certificate.

  • Any corrections made to the Veterinary Health Certificate must be struck through, remain legible and be signed and stamped by the Official Veterinarian. Correction fluid must not be used.

  • The Official Veterinarian must also sign and stamp each page of the following supporting documents and record the microchip number of the animal on all pages
    • Ehrlichia, Babesiosis, Lyme disease laboratory report,
    • Leishmania infantum laboratory report,
    • Brucella canis laboratory report (where applicable),
    • Heartworm (Dirofilaria immitis), where applicable
    • Leptospira interrogans serovar canicola laboratory report (if not vaccinated),
    • Rabies vaccination certificate,
    • FAVN Laboratory Report.
  • A copy of the supporting documents including the Official Veterinary Export Health Certificate should be submitted to the Permit Unit at vsdpermits@gmail.com to be vetted prior to arrival.
  • It is recommended that you retain a copy of each document for your file.
  • The Veterinary Services Division will provide applicants with a DOG AND CAT IMPORT CHECKLIST (click here)  which will help applicants verify that their pet(s) meet(s) the requirements for entry in Jamaica.

GENERAL INFORMATION

NOTIFICATION OF ARRIVAL

  • Importers are required to submit copies of ALL documents,  inclusive of the Official Veterinary Export Health Certificate relating to ALL Test, Vaccination and Treatment requirements in accordance with the permit issued for their animal prior to arrival.  Documents should be submitted to the Permit Office at 193 Old Hope Road, Kingston 6 or via email at vsdpermits@gmail.com.

    Importers are advised that in accordance with The Animal Disease (importation) Control Regulations, 1948 that any import condition (requirement) of a permit permitting the importation of any animal not complied with, can result in a veterinary officer refusing permission for any such animal to be landed.

  • The Animal Landing Notification Form (click here) should be completed and submitted to the Director of Veterinary Services Division via the Permit Unit at vsdpermits@gmail.com three (3) weeks before the scheduled arrival date of the dog or cat. The following information is required on the Animal Landing Notification Form:
    • Name, address (in Jamaica) and contact information of the owner/agent;
    • Name and contact information of the Customs broker (if applicable);
    • Date and time of arrival;
    • Airline and Flight number
  • The Confirmation of Animal Arrival Form (click here) should be submitted a further seventy-two (72) hours prior to landing as confirmation of the arrival of dog or cat along with copies of the Official Veterinary Export Health Certificate

  • As far as is practicable, dogs and cats intended to be landed in Jamaica must arrive during normal working hours, i.e. between 8:30 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. Mondays to Thursdays and 8:30a.m. and 4:00 p.m. on Fridays. This is to facilitate requisite Customs and Veterinary clearance followed by quarantine where applicable.
  • The dog or cat MUST arrive directly into Kingston, unless otherwise authorized under law by the Director, Veterinary Services.
  • The dog or cat MUST arrive in Jamaica prior to the expiration date of the import permit

TRAVEL GUIDELINES

  • Dogs and cats CAN travel as manifested cargo, with checked baggage or in the cabin in compliance with the International Air Transport Association (IATA) approved standards. It should be noted that each airline may have specific protocols in relation to pet travel and prior notice must be given to the Veterinary Services Division.

  • Dogs and cat travelling as manifested cargo or with checked baggage must travel in an International Air Transport Association (IATA) approved crate which must be properly cleaned and disinfected before travel.

  • It is against the law for dogs or cats to travel with straw or hay bedding, any cloth bedding, or with any toy or clothing. The landing veterinary officer WILL confiscate and destroy these items.

POST ENTRY AND QUARANTINE

In accordance with local law, upon arrival in Jamaica, dogs and cats must be examined by an official veterinarian.

  • Upon arrival, an official veterinarian will:
    • Conduct a documentary check in relation to the dog or cat on ALL required import documents inclusive of:
      • Original Importers copy of the Veterinary Import Permit (permit must be valid)
      • Original Veterinary Health Certificate.
      • Certified copies of all laboratory and test results
      • Physically examine the dog or cat, verify that the animal is in good health and free from any signs or symptoms of infectious or contagious diseases, including the infectious or contagious diseases listed in the Sixth Schedule (Click here for Test, Vaccination and Treatment Entry Requirements)

 DETERMINATION OF QUARANTINE OR RELEASE

  • Where the inspector determines that the dog or cat is of good health and free from symptoms of infectious or contagious diseases, including the infectious or contagious diseases set out in the Sixth Schedule, the inspector may:
    • Require the dog or cat to undergo post-entry quarantine for a period of not less than (14) fourteen days at the National Quarantine Facility, Plumb Point
    • Permit the dog or cat to enter the Island;
  • In the case of a Special Service Dog, where quarantine is pre-determined the officer will  permit the dog or cat to be transported to a location approved by the inspector, at the owner’s expense, subject to such terms and conditions as the inspector considers necessary.
    • Terms and Conditions of place approved by the Inspector for Service Dogs.
      • Location is inspected by veterinary inspector approximately fourteen (14) days prior to importation, to determine the suitability of the location.
      • No other dogs or cats should be present at location

SERVICE DOGS

  • Service dogs MUST be registered with one or more of the following organizations:
    • Assistance Dogs International or its associates;
    • The European Disability Forum;
    • The European Guide Dog Federation;
    • The International Association of Assistance Dog Partners;
    • The International Guide Dog Federation;
    • The International Association of Human-Animal Interaction  Organizations.

JAMAICA CUSTOMS DUTY AND OTHER FEES

  • The Importer MUST notify the Jamaica Customs Agency of the pending arrival of the dog or cat and must verify with the Jamaica Customs Agency the requisite Custom’s fees where applicable. This may also be accomplished by employing the services of a custom’s broker.
  • ALL dogs and cats attract customs duty under the Customs Act. All customs duties and associated fees are required to be paid prior to release of the dog or cat. Failure to pay requisite duties may result in the dog or cat being detained or quarantined.
  • The costs associated with the identification document, transportation, storage and obtaining biosecurity clearance shall be borne by the importer.
  • Landing of animals outside of the prescribed hours (8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Mondays to Thursdays and 8:30 a.m. to 4:00p.m. Fridays and on a week-ends and Public Holidays), will attract extra fees.

For further information, please contact the Permit Unit of Veterinary Services Division at vsdpermits@gmail.com or (876) 927-0594; (876) 977-2489/92.


IN TRANSIT/TRANSHIPMENT OF DOGS OR CATS

  • Permission may be given for transit/trans-shipment of a dog or cat via Jamaica. However, prior authorization must be sought from the Veterinary Services Division.
  • Dogs being trans-shipped will NOT be permitted to leave the air side of the airport.

INFORMATION REQUIRED FOR TRANSIT OF DOGS AND CATS.

  • country of origin
  • date of arrival
  • arrival vessel/craft name and number
  • port of entry
  • time of arrival
  • period of transit
  • date of departure
  • departure vessel/craft name and number
  • time of departure
  • country of destination

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

  • Persons exporting their pets with the intention to return to Jamaica, please be aware that when your dog or cat leaves Jamaica, it immediately loses its Jamaican health status.
  • If you are likely to return to Jamaica with your dog or cat, it is recommended that you discuss this with the Veterinary Officer, Permit Unit, prior to leaving Jamaica.

 


 

For further information, please contact:

Permit Unit of Veterinary Services Division
Tel: (876) 927-0594 or 977-2489/92
Email: vsdpermits@gmail.com

FIRST SCHEDULE (Regulation 10)

PART I
Countries from which Dogs and Cats may be Imported
CATEGORY 1
Countries Considered as Rabies-Free, or in which Rabies is Well-Controlled

Andorra Anguilla Antigua & Barbuda Aruba Ascension Islanda Australia
Bahamas Barbados Bermuda Bonaire, St. Eustatius & Saba British Virgin Islands Canada
Cayman Islands Channel Islands Curacao Dominica European Union Member States Falkland Islands
Faroe Islands Fiji French Polynesia Greenland Guam Guadeloupe
Hawaii Hong Kong Iceland Israel Japan Liechtenstein
Martinique Mexico Monaco Montserrat New Caledonia New Zealand
Republic of Ireland Russian Federation St. Helena St. Kitts & Nevis St. Lucia St. Maarten St. Martin
St. Pierre & Miquelon St. Vincent & the Grenadines San Marino Singapore Switzerland Taiwan
Trinidad and Tobago Turks and Caicos Islands United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States of America US Virgin Islands
Vanuatu Vatican City State Wallis & Futuna

 

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4 St. Lucia Avenue, Kingston 5, Jamaica
Telephone: (876) 968-7116 
Fax: (876) 960-7422 

Hope Gardens, Kingston 6, Jamaica
Telephone: (876) 927-1731-50 / (876) 619-1731
Fax: 876-927-1904
Email: psecoffice@micaf.gov.jm