Importing pets Into China via Chengdu

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Viewing 17 posts - 1 through 17 (of 17 total)

  • Nele
    Participant

    Hello,

    I would like to bring in my cat from Europe to China, but I am not sure about whether I can do that on a tourist visa. Every city seems to have its own regulations with Shanghai and Beijing being especially tough. Besides these two, other cities seem more relaxed. Documentation wont be a problem for my cat, anyway. Its my visa that Im worried about. Theres no clear information on what kind of visa a person needs to bring in a pet. Some websites say you need to have a Z visa, others say that one pet is allowed per person, irrespective of visa type.

    Does anyone have experience with bringing pets into China, especially through Chengdu? What visas were involved?

    Many thanks in advance!!

    #48370
    Charlie
    Charlie
    Keymaster

    It will require certification, blood tests, vaccination, and a mandatory quarantine from what I can tell. There is a lot of information about this online on pages like this: China Pet Passport. Good luck, it does not look easy.

    #48378

    jgshill
    Participant

    We recently moved to Chengdu and brought our dog, a Yorkshire Terrier, with us in the cabin on a flight from San Francisco to Chengdu.  We had no problems with Customs getting the dog in.  In fact no one even asked us for her paperwork although we had all in order as outlined in China Pet Passport.  Maybe we were lucky but we have friend who brought in pets with no real problems, i.e. quarantine.

    #48396

    j_hoke
    Participant

    Hi all,

    I’m planning to move from the U.S. to Chengdu this summer with my two cats in tow, and I am currently searching for some of the same information is seems Nele was looking for a few months back. I wonder if anyone has any updates? Were you able to get your cat in without quarantine or excessive questioning, Nele?

    The question of what sort of visa allows for pet-bringing is an apt one. I’m planning to enlist a friend to carry my second cat in, since only one pet per visa is permitted, but I’m not sure what sort of visa he will have or if the cat needs to be “registered” under his name. I don’t want to take any chances, but at this point I’ve heard so many stories of people being able to basically just walk through with their pet that I’m pretty confused.

    Any advice or updates greatly appreciated! This is definitely the most stressful part of planning this move.

     

    Justin

    #49356
    Kelseyfay
    Kelseyfay
    Participant

    Hi Justin,

    My husband and I moved to Chengdu this past September and we brought our two (pretty large) dogs with us. I’ll outline what I did/know, but feel free to get in touch if you have any questions and I can see what I can do to help.

    My husband is on a Z visa, I am on an S1 visa. He was already in China when I brought the dogs. Basically you’re dealing with two sets of requirements: the airlines, and then China. Airlines are pretty straight forward and vary depending on whether the pets count as excess baggage (mine did because they’re big), or carry on, but typically you need proof of vaccinations and then a USDA certified health certificate filled out by a USDA vet. That’s the trickier part because the form needs to be filled out within a very specific time frame before you fly (I believe 10 days). It’s basically just an official form that your animal is healthy.

    Not surprisingly the rules for getting pets into China is confusing, so again I can tell you what I did and what worked. China does say that you can only have one passport per pet. Since my husband was already in China, my mother actually flew with me and the dogs. She has a regular tourist visa. When the vet filled out our USDA Health Certificate, they put both my name and my mother’s name on both certificates. If your FIRST port of entry in China is Chengdu, there is currently no quarantine. From what I can gather, this is simply because they do not have the facilities (which means it could change one day). Beijing and Shanghai both technically require quarantines of 30 days.. I know people who have gotten around this, but if you can fly directly into Chengdu I think you’re better off. Also heard rumors of no quarantine if you come through Guangzhou, but again haven’t done that one myself.

    In Chengdu once through immigration and security check, there is a little quarantine desk at the other side before you exit. They checked my documents there, and the fact that my mother was on a tourist visa did not seem to make any difference. They gave me paper to register the dogs within a certain time frame upon leaving the airport. It was completely painless (the hype and uncertainly leading up to it was more stressful).

    I hope that helps a bit. I also had some phrases and information written out in Chinese in case it was needed.

     

     

     

    #49478

    j_hoke
    Participant

    Hi Kelsey,

    Thank you for all the helpful info. It’s confirming many of the few details I’ve been able to scrap together about this whole pet-relocating process. Will make sure all the forms are in order (presumably any certified American veterinarian can fill out that USDA form for me?) with both names on all forms. Chengdu will definitely be the first port of entry. Taking zero risks.

    I’m super relieved to hear that the visa type seems not to matter, as I’m not yet sure what visas my friend and I will be arriving with, and likely they’ll be different. My suspicion was that it’s likely to all be much less of a hassle than it seems, given the hype and uncertainty you mention, but so I glad to hear that confirmed. Did they interview you in any way, beyond glancing at the pets’ documents—about the pets, why your mom was bringing a pet on a tourist visa, anything? My friend’s stay in China will be short and he speaks very little Chinese (not to mention the cats aren’t even his), so any kind of interview is not likely to go so smoothly. We’ll be carrying my cats off the plane, unlike your dogs, so I don’t know if that changes anything in terms of the immigration/security/quarantine desks.

    I noticed [http://www.pettravel.com/immigration/china.cfm] that China seems to only require vaccine certifications and a USDA health certificate for pet entry, if this website is to be believed. Does that line up with your experience?

    Thanks again. You’ve put me a bit more at ease! I think.

    Justin

     

    P.S. By the way, where does one shop for pet products in Chengdu? I didn’t have any pets with me when I was last living there, so never bothered to look out for places selling catfood/litter. Not as pressing a question, just thought to ask.

    #49482
    Kelseyfay
    Kelseyfay
    Participant

    Hey!

    Check out this site: https://www.aphis.usda.gov/

    Then go to exporting pets. There’s helpful information on how to find a USDA approved vet and which USDA office is closest to you (where you’ll have to send the Health Certificates to get validated). People were super helpful when I called to get more info.

    And yes, currently China only requires proof of rabies vaccination and the Health Certificate.

    No interview in my experience, and there were no questions about my mother’s visa or how long she would be here. Again, have no idea if this is always the case but I do think if you have your paperwork in order and aren’t being a crazy person you stand a good chance 🙂 Quarantine area shouldn’t be different with carrying cats off the plane… only difference is the dogs actually came out on the luggage wheel with all the other luggage!

    For cats especially you’ll have no trouble finding toys, food, etc. If your little corner store doesn’t have anything (and it probably will), the bigger stores like Carrefoure do.

    #49483

    j_hoke
    Participant

    Again, exceedingly helpful, thank you! Will come back to this thread if I run across any more questions in the coming months.

    #49484
    ElisabethG
    ElisabethG
    Participant

    Hello everyone,

    I have the exact same problem.

    I will probably move to Chengdu from Berlin next summer and need to bring my two dogs (Chihuahua & Chihuahua-Dachshund, both about 5kg / 11 lbs).

    So quarantine seems to be not much of a problem (so far) in Chengdu. Does anyone know whether this has changed?

    The second problem I came across is, that it seems only one pet per household is allowed. My dad would fly with me to import one dog via his visa, but I am worried about the one pet per household policy. Does anyone of you know anything about this?

    Kelseyfay, as you seem to have two dogs in one household with your husband, I would be so thankful if you shared your experiences with me! 🙂

    Furthermore: How do I find a place to rent with dogs? I’ve only been to Shanghai once, never to Chengdu and am completely new to this problem.

    As j_hoke already mentioned: This is definitely the most stressful part of the move.

    Thanks in advance everyone!

    #50478

    j_hoke
    Participant

    Hello again,

    I’m still a few weeks away from my trip with the cats, so would also appreciate any updated information. I think I have everything in order, but it’s China—you never know.

    Elisabeth, I’ve never heard the one pet per household rule. (How would they enforce that?) I do know you can only have one pet per passport, as we discussed earlier in the thread, but if your dad is helping, that shouldn’t be an issue. I imagine as your dogs are small, you will carry them onto the plane with you, as I will my cats, so our situation might differ somewhat from Kelseyfay’s and her large dogs, as we will have our pets with us when we talk to the customs agent. Not sure if they will want to see all the pet-documentation or if they just won’t care at all.

    I still haven’t heard anything about Chengdu quarantine.

    If by “next summer” you mean 2017, you’re best worrying about it next year, as the rules will almost certainly be different by then!

    Good luck. Perhaps we will pet-sit for each other one day.

    j

    #50480
    ElisabethG
    ElisabethG
    Participant

    Thank you for your reply j! 🙂

    Yes, I mean 2017 by next summer and I am also a bit worried the rules might have changed by then… <span style=”line-height: 1.5;”>And you’re right about it probably being different with the small pets than with larger ones.</span>

    About the one pet per household rule: I am quite confused as I’ve read so much (different) information on this during the past few weeks. But from what I’ve read it seems you need to register your dog with the police (or was that only for big dogs?) and only one dog per household can be registered? I don’t want to confuse anyone here as the information might be outdated.

    I hope everything works out for us and our cats and dogs and we’ll pet-sit for each other one day! 🙂

    For now I am wishing you the best of luck and keeping my fingers crossed for you and your cats!

    #50487

    j_hoke
    Participant

    Hello again,

    Just thought I’d update here now that the cats and I are safely in Chengdu. My friend and I had my two cats’ paperwork perfect and ready to pull out when we arrived, and we literally just walked out of the airport with them, no questions asked. I had their cages covered with a blanket the whole time the whole time, so it’s possible the immigration officers didn’t notice, but I honestly think they wouldn’t have batted an eye.

    There’s also a custom’s check after baggage claim where you’re meant to send your bags through security; in the States this would require the cats to be taken out of their cages and carried, but before we could reach the checkpoint, a rather long line had formed and the officers just started waiving everyone through and not bothering to scan anything. I noticed an older white lady with two dogs also just roll them on into the country. This was around 18:30 on a Sunday, if that’s relevant.

    Not sure if this is always the case, and I had all the vaccinations and paperwork done to the last detail (at considerable expense!), but it seems to be rather easy, at least for now.

    Hope this helps.

    j

    #50607
    ElisabethG
    ElisabethG
    Participant

    Hello J,

    I am so happy to hear it all went so well for you and your cats! Thank you very much for updating everyone on this! It all sounds really good and I hope it will work the same way with me and my dogs next year (although I am aware that everything might be different by then). I now know for sure that I will be moving to Chengdu in summer 2017, so I am planning to slowly start taking care of everything needed.

    I hope you’ll have an amazing time in Chengdu (and your cats as well)! 🙂

    Furthermore I have a few more questions for the ones with dogs (and the ones who know anything about this):

    1. Is there a nice area to live with dogs (e.g. with a small park) anywhere close to (or just not extremely far away from) the Southwestern University of Finance and Economics (which is near Guanghuacun Street)?

    2. Are there any regulations on having dogs in the center of the city? Do you need to live in a more rural area for dogs to be allowed to live with you? As I’ve heard the rules in Beijing are quite strict, so I was wondering about how it’s like in Chengdu (although I know it is supposed to be less strict than Beijing).

    3. Do you need to register your dogs with the local police (even if they’re small)? Are there any fees that need to be paid for having dogs?

    Thanks in advance! 🙂

    #50609

    Tina1
    Participant

    Hi all!!

    I will be travelling for a couple.of weeks for work to Chengdu and i would.like to bring my dog with me (4 weeks is a long time to leave her with friends). I would lile to know if Chengdu is free of quarentine (this is a deal maker). Thanks a lot!!!

    #53690

    j_hoke
    Participant

    Hello,

    You want to bring a dog into China for only four weeks? I can’t even begin to tell you how not-worth-it that would be.

    At the time I brought my two cats into the country (summer 2016), I was told by officials Chengdu did not yet have room for quarantine, which is why it was so easy to bring them into the country via Chengdu (see above posts). Given that some time has passed and Chinese regulations change on a dime, it’s possible Chengdu quarantine rules have changed, too. You’re not likely to find out with any assurance before you arrive, as everything is unclear on- and offline.

    Quarantine or no, you’ll need to get your dog sufficiently vaccinated, get the appropriate paperwork filled out, and assemble their “passport”——all of this is a headache and a considerable expense. In my case, these documents were not even consulted at the airport, but I still would have never dared travel without them. (Keep in mind the re-entry regulations for pets from your home country may be just as strict, or more so.)

    At the time of my entry, we were able to bring pets in regardless of visa type, though I had a longterm visa anyway. It’s possible this has changed by now. You certainly cannot bring a pet in on a tourist visa in most countries, and I suspect the fact that I basically just walked in with my cats was sort of a fluke. (Keep in mind with cats and small dogs, you can often carry them onto the plane, and thus carry them through customs. If you’re trying to bring a large dog into China for mere weeks, forget it.)

    On top of this, if indeed there is quarantine for dogs in Chengdu when you arrive, it’s possible it will be longer than four weeks, the length of your stay. (Many other Chinese cities do indeed have strict quarantine laws, so you’d need to fly direct to Chengdu to avoid this; if you enter China in Beijing before connecting to Chengdu, for example, you’ll pass through customs there, and your pet will be stuck in Beijing.)

    Sorry I can’t give you more quarantine info. However, that’s sort of the point. You’re not likely to find out before you arrive.

    Perhaps you’re a veteran pet-traveling, I dunno, but I’m surprised you’d even consider bringing your dog for such a short time. Less than, say, a year seems not only not worth the hassle and uncertainty but also not worth the stress for your dog.

    Best,

     

    j

     

    #53693

    Tina1
    Participant

    Hello J, thanks for your answer.

    I adopted my dog this year and we have travelled quite a lot, but to USA and in Europe. Now we are going to Turkey and Argentina. She is a Chihuahua mix, so quite small. She gets stressed if she is not with me , that is why I wanted to take her with me.

    I knew about Beijing and Shanghai quarantine, but not sure about Chengdu, because the posts saying that it was free quarantine are old. I called the consulate and they were not helpful at all… Also I asked if I can travel with a dog under business Visa… the answer was that the dog does not need visa… hahaha

    We have all the vaccines, European passport and titrage. But yes, If she has to stay in quarantine even for 1 week, it is a no. Also I cannot travel through another airport free of quarantine, because then how do I get to Chengdu? (I know I cannot travel with her in the cabin in Chinese airlines and very difficult travel by train)

    Thanks again for your comments. It clarifies me a little bit more.

    🙂

    #53694

    j_hoke
    Participant

    Hello again, didn’t mean to scare you, since it sounds like you have a lot of experience traveling with your dog. My lasting advice, though, is to do as much research and preparation as you can, of course, but still assume you won’t know what the regulations-du-jour are until you arrive, because that is likely to be the case. If that lack of clarity doesn’t inhibit you from traveling with the dog, then go for it! For me, it was the confusion, more than the actual preparation and travel with my cats, that was so stressful.

    Good luck. Let us know how it goes!

    Best,

    j

    #53696
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