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Moving with a dog  

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marshc
(@marshc)
Active Member

Hey guys, my fiancée and I will be moving down in December. I have yet to find a definitive answer as to my questions about our fur baby. My veterinarian said something about having to get a health certificate from the federal veterinarian which is in the state capitol, Oklahoma City. Is this true? I figured I could get a health certificate from any accredited veterinarian.

Thanks in advance,
Colin

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Posted : October 5, 2016 4:12 am
speee1dy
(@speee1dy)
Islander

when we brought our cat down we only needed an updated shot record from the vet within 10 days of our trip down.

so just go to your vet within 10 days of your trip and get a copy of all shot updates. especially rabies. there is no rabies on island.

call your airlines and find out what their requirements are . some breeds cannot fly on certain airlines. and animals cannot fly in hold during high heat

good luck and enjoy

ps-lots of activities in december so you are coming at a great time

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Posted : October 5, 2016 11:12 am
Alana33
(@Alana33)
Islander

Any veterinarian should be able to provide you with a health certificate for your dog and provide the necessary up to date shots but the health certificate must be issued within 10 days prior to travel.

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Posted : October 5, 2016 11:12 am
watruw8ing4
(@watruw8ing4)
Prominent Member

A little bit of misinformation here. Although most veterinarians are certified to complete the health certification form, not all are. At my vet in PA, only 3 of the 5 vets in the group were certified, so I had to make my appointments on the days the right vet was present.

I think, however, your vet may have been confused, and thought that the much more detailed Dept of Agriculture requirements for international pet transport had to be met. It's the same form, but needs additional endorsement. I would call your vet and make sure he knows this isn't required for the VI, and ask if he/she is certified to complete the "intra-state" documentation on the form. If not, you can probably call around to other vets and find one closer to home, who can fill out the part of the form you need, as long as you can supply them with the vaccination history from your current vet.

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Posted : October 5, 2016 3:23 pm
speee1dy
(@speee1dy)
Islander

all i had was an up to date shot record from my vet

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Posted : October 5, 2016 4:52 pm
Islander
(@islander)
Member Moderator

Good Afternoon,

The Department of Agriculture are the folks that oversee the animal permits, see their website's page on the topic at http://www.vifresh.com/vitnary.php.

Here is what they have for dogs:

"*** DOGS ***
All dogs upon entering the Virgin Islands shall be accompanied by an official health certificate stating that the animal did not originate from an area quarantined for rabies. All dogs must have been vaccinated for rabies within 6 months prior to the date of shipment except those dogs less than 12 weeks old. The certificate of vaccination for rabies must be attached to the official health certificate. No import permit is required."

It doesn't detail who fills out the certificate. You might call the Dept of Agriculture, and ask for Dr. Bethany Bradford, the director of vet services - she should be able to clear up exactly what your vet needs to provide you with. (Their number is at the top of the same webpage listed above with the regulations.)

Thank you for using VIMovingCenter.com to help with your moving plans.

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Posted : October 5, 2016 5:42 pm
rosesisland
(@rosesisland)
Island Expert

I've moved to STX twice in the past 21 years with dogs and cats. Went to my local Vet, he filled out forms that they were up-to-date on their shots and in good health within 10 days of our traveling. That was it. And, to my knowledge, no one even checked here on STX that that was done. Simple.

Oh, and never heard that my vet needed to be certified because he was legal to practice veterinary medicine.

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Posted : October 8, 2016 9:39 am
Alana33
(@Alana33)
Islander

All of our USVI Veterinarians have signed off on docs required for traveling with pets. We send many dogs to the states from shelters and rescue organizations from all 3 islands for a chance of getting a forever home.
If you've got birds or exotic animals, reptiles, etc., you have to check with AG Dept. and Dr. Bradford as Islander mentioned whether importing or exporting.

I spoke to my Vet about my upcoming relocation with my dogs and there's no problem.

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Posted : October 8, 2016 12:06 pm
AandA2VI
(@AandA2VI)
Noble Member

Any veterinarian should be able to provide you with a health certificate for your dog and provide the necessary up to date shots but the health certificate must be issued within 10 days prior to travel.

Yep. It's all pretty simple. You do NOT need a USDA vet to sign off to come into the USVi.

I just went through ALL OF THAT to get a stray puppy that I found to my friend in London. Now THAT was a lot of paperwork and hoops!

*** The views and opinions expressed in my posts are soley those of A&A2VI and other like minded islanders. These views and opinions do not necessarily represent those of the majority or any/all contributors to this site. Have a GREAT DAY!

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Posted : October 13, 2016 5:15 am
stxsailor
(@stxsailor)
Island Expert

I work at STX airport and for 5 years I have never seen anyone check arriving animals like mentioned above. But you do not want to be "that one time" that is checked.

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Posted : October 13, 2016 12:51 pm
AandA2VI
(@AandA2VI)
Noble Member

They don't check upon entry into the USVI. They check when you're going through security from origination. They did the paw swipe with our cats and asked if I had the health certificate but never asked me to show it to them.

When leaving here they check all the paperwork on check in. We've talken a few dogs off island to find their forever homes.

*** The views and opinions expressed in my posts are soley those of A&A2VI and other like minded islanders. These views and opinions do not necessarily represent those of the majority or any/all contributors to this site. Have a GREAT DAY!

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Posted : October 13, 2016 2:16 pm
watruw8ing4
(@watruw8ing4)
Prominent Member

When we made our first trip down here with our dog, I called VIDA, because the online information was ambiguous. They referred me to the "official health certification" language and told me it specifically meant the USDA form, just without the additional import endorsement. The first vet I used told me you had to be certified to fill out that form.

Now, knowing the VI, they may have told me that on a Tuesday, and I would have gotten a different answer if I had called on a Wednesday. But two other vets I had to use on later trips both insisted on using the USDA form. So if my own experience differs, sorry for misleading. But a further cautionary tale:

On our final trip down here, we were scrambling and l realized at the very last moment, that I had lost that certificate. I had the signed rabies form and tag, and a signed automated form the vet gives out that showed her exact health status (right down to the state of her teeth). I called the airline and they said no-go without that form. I went up a few channels and they still said without the USDA form, I couldn't fly the dog, unless the doco I had included that we weren't coming from an area with a rabies problem, even when I finally reached someone who knew their rules inside out. Since my flight was early in the morning, before the vet opened, I had to postpone. So maybe it's the airline, maybe it's the vets, or maybe it's VIDA, but I would never fly again with a pet without that form.

Bottom line is that the OP didn't need the import endorsement, so he didn't need a USDA vet.

(Sorry so late in updating, but my browser and I have been having terrible disagreements on who is in charge for the last two weeks.)

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Posted : October 16, 2016 3:16 pm
haymad
(@haymad)
Active Member

I just moved down about 2 months ago. I have an ESA that is a 7 month old 110lb Pitbull mix. He has been in training since he was 12 weeks old. I got his health record from my vet in CA the day before I came. It took 5 mins. Nobody asked for it on either end. I came straight off the plane, straight through the airport, got my bags, and went up to the rental car counter and rented a van. Then went out to the van and drove to my new house. No questions asked even though he drew loads of attention (GOOD attention) from EVERYONE. Maybe my experience is diff than most but I hope this helps to put your mind at ease. 🙂

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Posted : October 16, 2016 4:27 pm
Alana33
(@Alana33)
Islander

Dat's a big pup!
Hope you both enjoy de islands.

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Posted : October 16, 2016 4:41 pm
marshc
(@marshc)
Active Member

I just moved down about 2 months ago. I have an ESA that is a 7 month old 110lb Pitbull mix. He has been in training since he was 12 weeks old. I got his health record from my vet in CA the day before I came. It took 5 mins. Nobody asked for it on either end. I came straight off the plane, straight through the airport, got my bags, and went up to the rental car counter and rented a van. Then went out to the van and drove to my new house. No questions asked even though he drew loads of attention (GOOD attention) from EVERYONE. Maybe my experience is diff than most but I hope this helps to put your mind at ease. 🙂

I'm really glad to hear that! I too am a pit bull lover. I was raised around them, and they're great dogs.
This comment certainly put my mind at easy! So wth the ESA, did your dog fly for free? We're flying with delta, and I'm curious about the ESA fees

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Posted : October 16, 2016 5:10 pm
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