Traveling to Mexico with your pet


To be able to travel to Mexico with your pet, you are required to fill in certain formalities. But what are these? Find out in this article.

Expatriates who are planning to travel to Mexico may be wondering how to bring their pet with them. This should not be very complicated provided you fill in the required formalities. Note that only cats and dogs are considered as pets in Mexico. But you can also import other animals such as ducks, reptiles, hamsters, etc. Different conditions apply though. You are advised to inquire on related conditions with Mexican authorities in your home country before proceeding. You might need some special documents.


If you wish to travel with your cat or dog, you will need to produce the original and copy of its health certificate. This document must have been issued at least 10 days prior to your pet's scheduled entry date in Mexico by a recognized veterinary in your home country, mentioning the latter's name, registration number. The health certificate must contain the following:

  • the importer and exporter's name and address
  • the animal's identification number and final destination
  • the rabies vaccination and expiration date (less than three months old pets are exempt from rabies vaccination)
  • proof that the cat or dog has received treatment against internal and external parasites not more than six months before traveling
  • proof that the animal is clinically safe for export.

You can as well produce your pet's rabies vaccination certificate. If you have not filled in these formalities, you can still request for a Mexican veterinary on your arrival in the country. Fees will apply. Your pet will then be inspected by the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Office (OISAS) agents who are posted at airports, border posts and maritime ports.


Your pet has to be transported in an appropriate cage. Accessories such as baskets and covers are not allowed and may be seized. Moreover, you are authorized to carry a single meal for your pet on the arrival date.

Travel conditions may however vary according to different airline companies. You have to inquire on these first. If you are making a short stay in the country, consider inquiring on its return formalities.

On arrival

On your arrival in Mexico, the Animal and Plant Health Inspection officers will verify your pet and its travel documents and health certificates and confirm their authenticity. In case your pet has parasites such as ticks and fleas, you will have to pay for appropriate treatment. The officers will issue another health certificate authorizing import.


Fees applied amount to some US$ 1,900 if you are importing more than four pets.

Note that additional documents may be requested by immigration and customs officers.

Other animals

Foreigners wishing to import other animals such as ducks, reptiles, hamsters, or any other, have to check out the Módulo de consulta de los Requisitos Zoosanitarios de Importación. If the animal you wish to import is not in the list provided, you will have to contact the Dirección General de Salud Animal at or

Useful address:

Dirección General de Salud Animal
Av. Cuauhtémoc No. 1230
Col. Santa Cruz Ayotac
Del. Benito Juaréz
C.P. 03 310 Mexico

Phone: 01 (55) 5905-1000/1046/3224.

Note that the import health certificate costs come US$ 1,900.


You pet may be quarantined on its arrival in the country. The quarantine period usually varies between 12 days and 6 months. In fact, is it longer when the animal comes from a farther country.

Traveling in Mexico

You pet may travel with you around Mexico. However, in case you are traveling by taxi, you will have to precise it to the driver. Furthermore, pets are not allowed to travel in buses. But they can travel in the hold if there is any.

 Useful links:

Ministry of Agriculture of Mexico
SENASICA - Import conditions
OISAS directory

We do our best to provide accurate and up to date information. However, if you have noticed any inaccuracies in this article, please let us know in the comments section below.
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Member since 01 June 2008
Small earth, Mauritius
2 years ago

There is no cost when arriving in Mexico. The costs are in your home country for any needed vaccines and the international health certificate. In the US, there is no set cost for the certificate -- it is entirely up to your vet's discretion how much they charge. We have paid as little as $40 and as much as $175 (!!!).

3 years ago

This is correct information except you might want to note that "proof that the cat or dog has received treatment against internal and external parasites not more than six months before traveling". is NOT a requirement for pets entering Mexico from the USA or Canada. See the Word document on this official site: We just brought our dog into Mexico from the USA and found this to be the case. We had everything else required on the certificate and "no problema". Thanks!

2 years ago

how much were the fees, if any, for a pet coming in from the US? I am thinking cat.


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