Best way to bring pets into Mexico- this is a repost

This is Jan2017, again. Thought I would repost my question about bringing pets into Mexico in hopes someone with experience will see it and have some insight.  Many thanks! Here it is, from December 2017...

Jan2017 :

Hi,  everyone,
Does anyone have experience bringing their pets into Mexico? We have read up on the medical requirements,  etc., but are in need of advice on best way you get them here. It would be quite a long drive from Texas to the Cancun area and we've heard stories about best routes for safety,  etc. Our animals are older so we hesitate to try to fly them in. We appreciate any advice!

I also would like some suggestions.  We are not moving for another year but do have a Condo south of Cancun.  If my older dogs are still around would need to transport them and the cat.  I agree flying them is not a good idea so we have been assuming will need to drive them in.   Be glad to hear any other ideas.   JG

Janalea, I'll be entering info on our experiences worth the dogs once we have some 😀. That should be sometime later this Spring 😊

Hi,
We brought our two dogs from Colorado to San Miguel in August and we had to drive them in, our younger dog is too big to fit under an airline seat and we were not about to put him in a cargo area in the height of summer. We drove a rental van to Laredo and had a woman meet us there and drive us from Laredo to San Miguel, we could not drive our car in because we are permanent residents.  All went very well and we all arrived safe and sound. If you are worried about driving in Mexico and don't want to fly, hiring a Mexican national who is bilingual and knows the routes and is savvy about the routes, may be your best alternative. Good luck.

apicasso :

Hi,
We brought our two dogs from Colorado to San Miguel in August and we had to drive them in, our younger dog is too big to fit under an airline seat and we were not about to put him in a cargo area in the height of summer. We drove a rental van to Laredo and had a woman meet us there and drive us from Laredo to San Miguel, we could not drive our car in because we are permanent residents.  All went very well and we all arrived safe and sound. If you are worried about driving in Mexico and don't want to fly, hiring a Mexican national who is bilingual and knows the routes and is savvy about the routes, may be your best alternative. Good luck.

Yes! Our dogs are elderly and large and we wouldn't want to fly them down for many reasons.

Thank you for this idea! I have wondered about this as a possibility but have no idea how to find someone to do this!  We will be going to Akumal area,  quite a long drive.  Because of the car/truck rules I have also wondered if we could hire someone to do something similar with any belongings we might need to bring. Did you rent the van in the states and your hired driver then drove it into Mexico for you? Or did you have to unload the rental van and transfer contents (people, dogs, household) to the driver's vehicle?  And I wonder if that is even allowed at the border crossing area....(meaning the more involved household contents thing). We want to buy a car in Mexico and would like to avoid bringing one in with a trailer of stuff then having to drive it back to the states.

Do you think the woman you hired would be interested in driving for us all the way to Akumal?

I appreciate your insight very much!

HI Jan,
We rented our van and drove to Laredo and rented a van for our driver, since we could not drop the van in San Miguel. You can check with other car rental agencies to see if they have agreements in Mexico. We then rented a van for our driver to pick up in Leon, which is where she is based and she met us at the hotel in Laredo where we transferred our dogs and belongings to her van. She drove us to San Miguel and then dropped her rental van off back in Leon.  She drives people from all over the States to all over Mexico. We had our furniture brought in by a separate mover and the mover put us in touch with her. If you are interested in using her, she is a great lady and very careful driver, if you give me your email, I can forward it to her and she can reply to you, personally. I also know a lady in Lake Chapala area who my friend used for the same service. I don't know if she has a limit on how far she transports, but I can forward your email to her, as well.  She uses her own vehicle, so you would not have to pay for a rental in Mexico. I do not know her personally, but she got my friend and her two dogs from Laredo to Lake Chapala safely and without incident. Also, we had all the documented proof of vaccinations and fea/tick treatment with us, but this was not asked for at the border. I would still make sure you have this, just in case. Also, you do have to stop at immigration in Nuevo Laredo to receive a stamped FMM, if you don't, you will have to travel back there and get it before you can get or risk getting deported:). A friend of mine failed to do this and it was a major pain!
Saludos,
Arlene

apicasso :

HI Jan,
We rented our van and drove to Laredo and rented a van for our driver, since we could not drop the van in San Miguel. You can check with other car rental agencies to see if they have agreements in Mexico. We then rented a van for our driver to pick up in Leon, which is where she is based and she met us at the hotel in Laredo where we transferred our dogs and belongings to her van. She drove us to San Miguel and then dropped her rental van off back in Leon.  She drives people from all over the States to all over Mexico. We had our furniture brought in by a separate mover and the mover put us in touch with her. If you are interested in using her, she is a great lady and very careful driver, if you give me your email, I can forward it to her and she can reply to you, personally. I also know a lady in Lake Chapala area who my friend used for the same service. I don't know if she has a limit on how far she transports, but I can forward your email to her, as well.  She uses her own vehicle, so you would not have to pay for a rental in Mexico. I do not know her personally, but she got my friend and her two dogs from Laredo to Lake Chapala safely and without incident. Also, we had all the documented proof of vaccinations and fea/tick treatment with us, but this was not asked for at the border. I would still make sure you have this, just in case. Also, you do have to stop at immigration in Nuevo Laredo to receive a stamped FMM, if you don't, you will have to travel back there and get it before you can get or risk getting deported:). A friend of mine failed to do this and it was a major pain!
Saludos,
Arlene

Thank you so much Arlene, what a help! That is what I thought you meant but wanted to be sure...I am feeling much relieved thinking we might have a knowledgeable driver to take us through all that unfamiliar territory. We plan to bring as little personal property/household stuff as possible but it will be more than a car could hold. Using a mover is a possibility to bring "more" but we've been told it costs more than the things we might move :).
Yes,  I would very much appreciate it if you would send my information to birth ladies.  I will send you my details in a message. We will be getting the dog's paperwork together. Our vet told us at least one is old enough that here in US he doesn't need vaccinations anymore and they can issue paperwork accepted in other states to that effect.....I'm thinking Mexico won't like that so I'll need to do some research.  Thanks for the reminder about the FMM, it would be the pits to be deported....
Thanks again for all your help!

Hello,

When we crossed the border at Nuevo Laredo with our three dogs, the border police did not even bother to look in the back of our Suburban where the dogs were sleeping in a wire crate.

When we passed the interior checkpoint miles later, same thing. I guess my dogs are illegal immigrants now  :gloria

But I still had them vaccinated at my vet back in the states and checked for worms. I read online that Mexican authorities require rabies certifications as well as the certification that they are parasite free.

Additionally, the rabies vaccinations must be performed at least two weeks prior to entry to Mexico, so they will have had time to ensure that our animals are free of any rabies related disease.

It turned out that it was all for naught, as the only thing that the border police wanted from me was to tax me for my household goods. As usual, the main concern is getting money from the gringos.

I hope this helps.

Jeff

We had similar experience at the border with our dogs at the border, however, don't try to get by at the airport without the proper documentation or they will detain you until a local vet can get there to vaccinate and apply parasite medicine to your dog or cat. This has been documented in other blogs and has been told to us by others here in San Miguel. The other thing about Mexico, rules and how they are or are not enforced change on a regular basis! That's one thing you can count on here. Better to have your pets vaccinated, dewormed and deflead  to be sure they are safe. 
Another thing they didn't look at or try to charge us for were all of our household goods we had stuffed in our van. If you come in with a house full of furniture you will have to document what it is and it's worth on a manifest and if they are new items you may be charged a tariff, if they are used, there is no tariff.  At least that was our experience.  However, we used a moving company for our furniture and he took care of
all the documentation and manifest.
I have never felt that the Mexican people arr always looking for a way to get money from the gringos. There are always dishonest people wherever you go, including in the States. I have found that professional "gringos" who have businesses here are more likely to overcharge you than the local Mexicans!

You are absolutely correct about pets; don’t risk it. Have them vaccinated, de-wormed and flea-free at least two weeks prior to crossing the border. It’s not worth the hassle that one might face without all of those services being performed ahead of time. And definitely make sure that your USA veterinarian provides a certification form for every animal that you bring with you.

As far as the Mexican people go, most of my experiences, particularly in restaurants, have been excellent. Mexicanos go out of their way to serve excellent cuisine, with excellent service.

In the short time I have been here, it’s the professionals I have dealt with who have taken advantage of my lack of cultural understanding to screw me as hard as they can. One veterinarian and a notario publicio cleaned out my wallet but good. Having a document notarized in Mexico is a scam at best. But, our US Consular Office is also “on the take”, as they charge USD $50 per signature (typically $5 USD in the States). So it’s a lose-lose situation, a “f**k you, PAY me.

I am used to professionals tricks in the USA, and I can usually prevent myself from being taken advantage of. But I have a lot to learn in Mexico, and I will learn, because I love it here, and intend to stay.

Jeff

Just because the border people are focused on their main job does not mean you can ignore the regulations. They could decide after you are in the country, that they need to see the paper work, That's the way it works here. Be prepared and you can relax.

Yes, it is definitely an ongoing learning experience! We too have had negative experiences with Notarios, I guess they get their job from family members that pass it down to them like a right of birth! We had one really mess up our house closing and we are still trying to straighten things out and he, of course, has washed his hands of it and takes no responsibility. Fortunately, the majority of the people we deal with here are honest, hard working and take pride in their work. I do find that the expat professionals definitely charge the highest prices and think if we are American, we must be wealthy! I have had the best luck with local carpenters, plumbers, painters, etc with locals that have been referred to us by others who have knowledge of their work. We love it here too and have no intention of leaving!
Saludos,
Arlene

It just occurred to me why I don't particularly enjoy this forum. Asinine comments, like the one you just made.

apicasso :

Yes, it is definitely an ongoing learning experience! We too have had negative experiences with Notarios, I guess they get their job from family members that pass it down to them like a right of birth! We had one really mess up our house closing and we are still trying to straighten things out and he, of course, has washed his hands of it and takes no responsibility. Fortunately, the majority of the people we deal with here are honest, hard working and take pride in their work. I do find that the expat professionals definitely charge the highest prices and think if we are American, we must be wealthy! I have had the best luck with local carpenters, plumbers, painters, etc with locals that have been referred to us by others who have knowledge of their work. We love it here too and have no intention of leaving!
Saludos,
Arlene

Referred by others is the key. I had no problem with a notary, but I came in with 3 locals who knew her. and that made a big impression. Knowing someone, who knows someone is the best way to go. I am fortunate in having a friend who is bilingual, and good neighbors.

Priceless!!

We travel back and forth between Mexico and the U.S. at least twice yearly, sometimes driving our motorhome, sometimes flying. So we have lots of experience. If you haven't read my blog article on our fiasco at the Puerto Vallarta airport, you might like to. We learned a lot! Here is the link where I explained the new 2017 rules and paperwork requirement: Bringing Your Pet into Mexico: New 2017 Laws are Being Enforced! Avoid a 2-Hour Delay When Entering Mexico!
Best Wishes,
Terry L. Turrell

Thank you,  Terry! Your link has not yet been approved but I will read your adventure as soon as it is available. Thank you for taking the time to share your experience. Jan

let me know how it goes if you do use a driver/ and car to get pets and household items into Mexico.  I would be interested in trying that option.  I still have over a year but best to be prepared.   Thanks for all the info.   Janalea

janalea :

let me know how it goes if you do use a driver/ and car to get pets and household items into Mexico.  I would be interested in trying that option.  I still have over a year but best to be prepared.   Thanks for all the info.   Janalea

Hi,  Jana,
Yes I will be happy to post updates. Everyone here has been so helpful I would like to do my part! We are currently in Akumal looking for rentals with little luck so far. But did learn of  another person who does transport "all over" from anywhere in us to anywhere in Mexico,  supposedly,  and have ideas on how to find some rental properties. We hippie to make our move later this Spring.  We are enjoying the beautiful scenery :)
Jan

I am in a panic! My two cats need to get to Mexico. I am flying, delta states they do not fly pets international. They told me it was ok as long as I have the proper papers, now they say no. I am leaving May 21! Anyone with ideas i would appreciate.  I am flying to Mazatlan.

bothner06 :

I am in a panic! My two cats need to get to Mexico. I am flying, delta states they do not fly pets international. They told me it was ok as long as I have the proper papers, now they say no. I am leaving May 21! Anyone with ideas i would appreciate.  I am flying to Mazatlan.

There are several expat groups on Facebook whose members may have ideas to help you with this. If you are interested you can search for them on Facebook or reply here and I'll give you a few group names. There is also a "mule" group of experts who help each other getting things to and from the us/mexico when they travel back and forth. Maybe someone in your area can drive your kitties down.

bothner06 :

I am in a panic! My two cats need to get to Mexico. I am flying, delta states they do not fly pets international. They told me it was ok as long as I have the proper papers, now they say no. I am leaving May 21! Anyone with ideas i would appreciate.  I am flying to Mazatlan.

If it were me I would board the cats for a month, while I worked on proper arrangements.
The time frame is too short to find people you know you can trust. I would also choose a different carrier next flight. Someone more flexible like Southwest, although many may choose not to fly pets due to bad press of late.

Hi, If possible, I too would like the information to contact these wonderful ladies and also the contact for the movers you used.  I am not ready to move yet, but when I do, I will be bringing my pets.  I have 3 dogs and a cat, so I understand I probably have to make two trips.....

If you could share the information I would be very grateful.

Katherine

***

I’m very concerned about not bringing my dogs.  They are my support dogs, my family.

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