The Adventures of Django and Arya

New Zealand

Cats and dogs can be imported to New Zealand under strict conditions designed​ to manage biosecurity risks. Requirements on entry to New Zealand with cats and dogs depend on your country of origin. A Pet Import Permit is needed to enter New Zealand rather than the Pet Passport Scheme used in the EU. You may already be aware that quarantine is mandatory for all cats and dogs arriving in New Zealand from most countries. However, some Assistance & Service Dogs may be exempt from quarantine rules. So, if you’re taking a pet to New Zealand, read on for the full details for cats and dogs.

New Zealand pet Import rules taking dog or cat pet travel

Estimated reading time: 4 minutes

Cat & Dog Quarantine in New Zealand

On arrival in New Zealand, your pet cat or dog will be transported directly to the quarantine facility named on the Import Permit, for a minimum of 10 days quarantine. The quarantine facility arranges the transport. Your pet will be inspected by a veterinarian at the beginning and end of their quarantine in New Zealand.

Once your cat or dog meets all the import requirements, they will be cleared to leave the facility. Note that if your pet is unwell during quarantine in New Zealand they may have to stay longer.

If your dog or cat is found to have fleas or ticks, this may extend the period of quarantine in New Zealand.

Pets arriving in New Zealand by plane

Be aware that your cat or dog can’t be imported to New Zealand in the cabin of the plane. Pets and other animals that you’re taking to New Zealand must arrive in the aircraft cargo hold.

Category 1: Australia and Norfolk Island

Dogs and cats from Australia and Norfolk Island do not require an Import Permit to enter New Zealand, but an inspection will be carried out upon arrival.

Pet Import Certificate
Mandatory 10 Day Quarantine
Inspection on Arrival
New Zealand Pet Travel Category 1

Note that if your cat or dog fails the inspection upon arrival in New Zealand, they’ll have to spend at least 10 days in quarantine. Cats from the Cocos (Keeling) Islands do require an Import Permit.

Group 2: Approved Rabies Free Countries

Group 2 countries are classified as Approved Rabies Free Countries. If you’re taking pet cats and dogs to New Zealand from the following places, you must have an Import Permit before you arrive:

  • American Samoa
  • Bahrain
  • Barbados
  • Christmas Island
  • Cook Islands
  • Falkland Islands (Malvinas)
  • Fiji
  • French Polynesia
  • Guam
  • Hawaii
  • Iceland
  • Japan
  • Kiribati
  • Mauritius
  • Micronesia (Federated States of)
  • Nauru
  • New Caledonia
  • Niue
  • Palau
  • Papua New Guinea
  • Samoa
  • Singapore
  • Solomon Islands
  • Tonga (Kingdom of)
  • Tuvalu
  • Vanuatu
  • Wallis & Futuna
  • Western Samoa
Pet Import Certificate
Mandatory 10 Day Quarantine
Inspection on Arrival
New Zealand Pet Travel Category 2

Group 3: Rabies Controlled or No Rabies Countries

An Import Permit is required to be eligible to enter New Zealand with a cat or dog from one of the following Group 3 countries:

Antigua & Barbuda, Argentina, Austria, Bahamas, Belgium, Bermuda, Brunei Darussalam, Bulgaria, Canada, Cayman Islands, Chile, Croatia (Republic of), Cyprus (Republic of), Czechia (Czech Republic), Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Gibraltar, Greece, Greenland, Guernsey, Hong Kong, Hungary, Ireland (Republic of), Isle of Man, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Jersey, Kuwait, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macao, Malta, Monaco, Montenegro, Netherlands , Northern Mariana Islands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Qatar, Reunion, Saint Kitts & Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent & the Grenadines, Serbia, Seychelles, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa (Republic of), South Korea (Republic of), Spain (including Canary and Balearic Islands), Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Trinidad & Tobago, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, United States of America (excluding Guam and Hawaii), Uruguay, Virgin Islands (British), Virgin Islands (United States of America).

Pet Import Certificate
Mandatory 10 Day Quarantine
Inspection on Arrival
New Zealand Pet Travel Category 3

Non-Approved Countries via a Category 2 or Category 3 Country

Pet cats and dogs from non-approved countries aren’t eligible for direct import to New Zealand.

The options available are:

  • Move your pet to an approved country or territory where they must complete the six month residency and other requirements in the veterinary certificate for that country OR
  • Submit a request for inclusion of a country or territory in a veterinary certificate for cats and dogs.

Remember to always protect your pet against biting insects when in a foreign country, in addition to the pet travel rules for your destination.

Always check the government website for up to date information on travelling to New Zealand. And remember to leave a review if you’ve travelled to New Zealand with your pet!

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