Everything You Need to Know About Bringing Cats and Dogs to Los Cabos
Your pet is going to love Los Cabos for many of the same reasons you do: year-round sunshine and tropical breezes; gorgeous beach, desert and mountain terrains; and plenty of water–from infinity pools to the Pacific Ocean and Sea of Cortés–to splash around in.
But first you have to get them here.
Whether you’re bringing pets along to Los Cabos on a family vacation, or as part of a seasonal or permanent move, the requirements for their entry into México are much the same.
Luckily, these pre-conditions aren’t terribly difficult to fulfill. But they are very specific, so it’s important to be correct in all details.
The Right Paperwork
Both cats and dogs are covered by the standard International Health Certificate, APHIS Form 7001. APHIS stands for Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, and is an agency under the jurisdiction of the USDA, or United States Department of Agriculture. This form, an example of which you’ll find included here, must be filled out without abbreviations using a computer or word processor (handwritten forms will be rejected), and signed in ink by a USDA accredited veterinarian and an endorsing APHIS Veterinary Medical Officer, who will apply the necessary APHIS embossed seal. APHIS maintains endorsement offices in most U.S. states, but if this option is not convenient, México also accepts certificates from USDA accredited vets on their own letterhead (see example). Whichever health certificate option you choose, it must be signed and dated within 1o days of your arrival in México.
Open and Download Health Certificate PDF and Form 7001 here:
The Right Shots
You’ll need your vet to provide proof of vaccines against rabies and distemper, administered at least 15 days before arrival in México. You should also have a detailed description of the pets, and a statement that the pets in question are healthy and fit to travel, and have been dewormed internally and externally within the last six months. All of this information may be included by your vet on the health certificate, but if not, ask him or her for additional documentation. Make photocopies of everything, just to be on the safe side.
Your dog would almost certainly prefer to come by car, ensuring at least 1,ooo miles of hanging his or her head out the window. But regardless of how you bring your pets into México (air, land or sea), each individual is allowed up to two cats or dogs (four per couple).
Airlines vary in their requirements for purpose-built crates and kennels, but no cardboard or make-shift containers are acceptable. If you are flying with pets, you should make sure to confirm the correct requirements beforehand, and double check that the crate or kennel is labeled properly. If you have a large dog (over 100 lbs.), he or she may have to fly separately in a cargo plane. There may be extra costs or baggage fees associated with transporting pets, so ask about this when confirming details with your airline of choice.
Once you arrive at your point of entry into México, look for a kiosk with the acronym SAGARPA/SENSAICA. This is where you present your health certificate and other documentation, and have your pets inspected. They should be in a crate, kennel or other clean pet transporter for inspection, with no bed or chew toys inside. Dry food and water are allowed in the transporter.
And that’s it…that’s all that stands between you and your pets and a new life in a sun-kissed tropical paradise.
See, we told you it wasn’t that difficult… If this article was helpful, please consider sharing, thanks!
Have any questions about bringing your cats or dogs to Los Cabos?
Call us from the USA / Canada at Contact Us herefor more details. We’ll help you find and buy your dream home in Los Cabos.