Animal Travel Services offers a range of pet travel clearance services for the import and export of your puppy, kitten or commercial shipment intended, to ensure that your precious cargo is cleared by South African Customs Authorities. Customs clearance can be challenging for any importer or exporter, but the strict regulations in place to prevent the illegal trafficking of endangered wildlife, all animals that are brought into the country or taken out of the country are subject to a number of requirements.


It is best to begin the preparations as early as possible – preferably as soon as you have begun making arrangements to export or import your pet. To help you prepare your pet for animal travel customs clearance, you will need to ensure that the following requirements are in order:

  • Permits are not required by every destination in the world, but may still apply to your destination. To be safe, it is best to speak to a pet travel specialist such as Animal Travel Services to find out what permits are required for the country you are importing or exporting to.
  • Microchips are almost always required. These should be implanted before the rabies vaccination so make sure that your pet is chipped well in advance.
  • Valid rabies vaccination (older than 30 days and younger than 1 year – South African Export requirement) – required for every destination.
  • Other vaccinations apart from the rabies vaccination, which is essential, include specific inoculations that apply to cats and dogs respectively. These may vary according to your target destination, so speak to your consultant to find out exactly what your pet will need.
  • Rabies antibody blood TITRE tests are becoming a pre-requisite for many countries around the world. These need to be done 90 days before your pet travels – speak to your Animal Travel Services consultant to learn more about this requirement.
  • Health certificates from a vet are always required. This certificate shows that your pet is in good health and safe to travel. Whether you are importing or exporting, this document is essential.
  • All original documentation has to travel with the pet, and copies will not be accepted. Taking the time to get your pet’s paperwork in order in advance will save you both added stress once the time to travel arrives.

Depending whether you are planning an animal export or import, other requirements may also apply. To find out exactly what your pet will need for pet travel customs clearance, contact us today.