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Understanding pet quarantine rules in Hong Kong

Hong Kong is a rabies-free country and therefore has complex pet import regulations in place. These regulations are primarily to prevent the introduction of exotic diseases in the country and protect the local fauna and flora.

If you are planning to move to Hong Kong with your pet dog or cat, it is imperative to understand the country’s quarantine rules before planning your travel. The number of days your pet dog or cat has to remain in quarantine depends on the country your pet is flying from.

How long will a pet be in quarantine in Hong Kong?

The duration on quarantine for your pet depends largely on the country your pet is flying in from and can be up to four months. Hong Kong has classified origin countries into three categories depending on the rabies status of the country.

  • Group I countries: These are countries which have no incidence of rabies. Dogs and cats flying in from these countries are exempt from quarantine, provided all import requirements are met. Group I countries are: Australia, Fiji, Hawaii, Ireland, New Zealand, Japan, and the United Kingdom.
  • Group II countries: Group II countries are countries with less incidence or rabies, and where rabies is controlled. Dogs and cats flying from these countries are also exempt from quarantine, as long as all the import requirements are met. Group II countries are: Austria, Bahamas, Bahrain, Belgium, Bermuda, Brunei, Canada, Cayman Island, Cyprus, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Gibraltar, Guam, Iceland, Italy, Jamaica, Luxembourg, Maldives, Malta, Mauritius, Norway, New Caledonia, Papua New Guinea, Portugal, Seychelles, Singapore, Solomon Islands, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, The Netherlands, Taiwan, USA (Continental), Vanuatu and Virgin Islands.
  • Group III countries: Countries that do not belong in Group I and II are classified as Group III countries. If your pet is entering Hong Kong from a Group III country, he or she will have to spend a minimum of four months in quarantine.

Quarantine procedure

If your pet is travelling from a Group III country, it is recommended to reserve the quarantine facility at least three months before the date of travel. To book space for your pet in the quarantine facility, you need to submit the following documents by fax:

  • Prescribed application form
  • HKID or passport copy of the applicant
  • Vaccination certificate with microchip number
  • Quarantine facility booking form

After you have provided all the relevant documents, you will be contacted by the facility officials to confirm the reservation period and pay the quarantine fees.

Animal Management Quarantine Centre

The Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department runs the Animal Management Quarantine Centre in Hong Kong. The Animal Management Quarantine Centre in Hong Kong has two centres; one in Hong Kong and the other in Kowloon. Both the centres have a well-appointed cattery for cats and spacious kennels for dogs. The cattery is air conditioned, and every cat has a litter box and other essentials. The dog kennel is spacious and well-ventilated with both indoor and outdoor compartments.

The quarantine centre provides general feeding and security for your pet. Your dog or cat will be fed according to schedule. If your pet is on a special diet, you can arrange with the centre to give them their favourite brand of pet food. The centre does not provide exercise, grooming or any other veterinary care for the pets in quarantine. You will have to make arrangements to exercise and groom your pet when he or she is at the quarantine centre.

The Animal Management Quarantine Centre allows you to visit your pet dog or cat during the quarantine period. Visiting hours are from 10 am to 12 noon and 2 pm to 4 pm on all days, including public holidays, but should be verified in advance of any visits.

Quarantine fees can be paid in advance, in full or on a monthly basis. Detention fees at Hong Kong’s quarantine centre start at HKD 90 per day for a dog and HKD 46 per day for a cat. These fees are exclusive of grooming, veterinary expenses and other third-party services.

When your pet has satisfactorily completed his or her quarantine, you will be contacted by the department on the releasing date. You can pick up your pet from the quarantine centre and bring them home after they have successfully met all quarantine requirements.

Moving to Hong Kong?

Bringing your pet to Hong Kong is a complex process, and a single misstep could result in your pet being refused entry or facing extended quarantine periods. If you are relocating to Hong Kong with your pet dog or cat, contact Petraveller for a detailed pet travel plan.