How to Bring and Own Pets In Colombia
So, now you got your Colombian visa and you are wondering how to bring your pet to Colombia. Let’s start with some good news: You do not need a pet permit or passport to travel to Colombia with your dog or cat.
But there’s a catch. The process of bringing a pet to Colombia is not that different from owning one. All you need are a couple of health certificates, and you will be the happy owner of a furball. Coming back to traveling with a pet to Colombia, you need to follow a few rules and regulations.
Though you will find plenty of websites online offering you a guide, we don’t recommend reading those as the translation from Spanish to English can change the meaning of some of the laws. So, we bring to you a short guide written in English that will tell you all the specifications about traveling with a pet.
Documents Required to Travel With Your Pet
Ten days before your flight, you need to get a health certificate from an accredited veterinarian. The certificate must be issued by the country you live in and not Colombia. For example, suppose you are traveling from Canada or the US. In that case, the health certificate must be endorsed by the CFIA in Canada and the USDA in the US.
The veterinary health certificate in the US is called the APHIS Form 7001. In Canada, it is called the Trilingual Animal Health Certificate, available in Spanish, French, and English. Even endorsement offices in the US offer rabies certificates and health certificates. Again, the certificate should be issued by the state you are traveling from with your pet.
Once you get the certificates, they are sent to Colombia for verification and returned to you in 48 hours. Don’t forget to add in the 10-day limit, or you will have to send the certificates for confirmation again. Moreover, you also need a vaccination certificate and a record of vaccination.
When it comes to a pet, such as a dog or a cat, you need to get it vaccinated for rabies 30 days before your travel. Colombia considers a vaccine valid for three years. In the case of dogs, they need to be vaccinated against several viral diseases, which include Parvovirus, Leptospirosis, Distemper, and Hepatitis. Cats need to be vaccinated against Feline Panleukopenia, Calicivirus, and Feline Rhinotracheitis. Except for Bolivia, Ecuador, and Peru, you need to get your pet vaccinated against Coronavirus (Canine Coronavirus) and Parainfluenza, no matter where you are traveling.
Banned Dog Breeds in Colombia
The following dog breeds are not allowed to travel to Colombia. This ban also applies to dogs mixed with these breeds and purebreds.
Pit Bull Terrier
American Pit Bull Terrier
Dogo de Burdeos
De Presa Canario
American Staffordshire Terrier
Colombia Pet Import Regulations
Is an Import Permit Required?
As mentioned earlier, you need a pet passport to travel with your dog or cat to Colombia.
Colombia Pet Import Regulations
While Colombia does not require you to chip your pet, we highly recommend using a 15-digit compliant pet microchip. Register your contact details and the chip number so that if you do lose your pet during travels, they can be easily found by the authorities.
Tapeworm and Ticks Treatment
Before entering Colombia, you should get your pet checked for external and internal parasites. While this is not a hard and fast rule, we recommend that you get your pet treated for this problem.
If your puppy or kitten is less than four months old, they won’t need vaccinations. First, though, you will be asked to quarantine for a while.
Traveling by Air With Your Pet
Pets are allowed to enter Colombia through José María Córdova International Airport, which is located in Medellín, or El Dorado International Airport, which is located in Bogota during business hours. You can check your pet as baggage in your cabin fly them via cargo.
Once you arrive in Colombia, you will take your pet to Instituto Colombiano Agropecuario Office (ICA) inside the airport. Your pet will be examined here, and their documentation will be checked for a small fee.
The Bogota ICA Office is open every day, round the clock and others are available from Monday to Friday. Opening hours are 8 AM to 5 PM.
In the case the checkup at the airport does not turn out to be good, a licensed veterinarian will be called to do a complete checkup once again, the cost of which will be borne by the owner.
What About Pets Other Than a Dog or Cat?
Let’s say that you have a pet parrot or turtle, and it is one of those rare breeds of which a few hundred remain in the world. Suppose you plan to take this pet to Colombia. In that case, you need to ensure that it is not protected under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES). In this case, a permit will be required to bring your pet onboard the flight. There are around 180 countries that enforce the CITES regulations.