New regulations for bringing dogs and cats into Barbados came into effect from January 1st 2015. The changes mean that you can now bring your pet from any country in the world – provided you follow the new simplified regulations.
Countries have now been divided into two (2) categories (replacing the previous four (4)):
Category 1 countries and territories (click to see list) are those that are rabies free or present a low risk with respect to rabies;
Category 2 countries are all other countries and territories. Animals travelling by sea (e.g. on yachts, cruise ships and cargo vessels) or that have lived in a Category 1 country for less than 3 months also fall into this group.
How you prepare your pet for its trip to Barbados will depend on which category it is coming from; however, regardless of which country your pet is coming from, all dogs and cats entering Barbados must be permanently identified with a microchip (the specific type is given in the new conditions) and must be vaccinated against rabies after the microchip has been implanted.
First things first: Import Permit
You will need official permission to bring your pet to Barbados so the first thing you need to do is apply for an import permit. Application forms may be obtained from the Veterinary Services office or can be downloaded here or from the Veterinary Services page “Importation of Dogs and Cats” page from the Ministry of Agriculture’s website at www.agriculture.gov.bb . Permits are valid for six (6) months from the date of issue.
A permit fee of BDS $25.00 is payable to the Veterinary Services Department at the offices in The Pine, St. Michael, Barbados. Payment may be made in cash or by one of the following monetary instruments made payable to The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture:
- an International Postal Money Order,
- a Certified Bank Draft.
If the money order is coming from a country other than Barbados, it must be in United States currency for US $15.00 (to cover all additional bank processing charges).
We regret that:
- personal cheques drawn on banks outside of Barbados cannot be accepted.
- credit card payments cannot be made at this time.
Once the application has been approved, you will be issued the import permit, as well as the conditions your pet has to meet to qualify for entry into Barbados. An Official Export Health Certificate (see conditions) has to be completed. You will need your veterinarian to assist you.
Failure to satisfy all of the health requirements laid out in the conditions will result in your pet being refused entry into Barbados.
Here is a brief overview of the conditions you will be given…
Pets from CATEGORY 1
Pets from CATEGORY 2
Travelling to and Arrival in Barbados
Your pet has met all the health requirements in the import conditions. Here are some points to note:
1. Regardless of country of origin, if your pet is travelling by a commercial airline, it must arrive in Barbados as manifested cargo.
2. Contact Veterinary Services to give at least 3 working days’ notice of the expected date and time of arrival of your pet. The department may be reached by
- Telephone (246) 427-5492 or (246) 427-5073
- Fax: (246) 429-2143 or
- E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Failure to do so will result in significant delays in getting your pet once it arrives.
3. Please provide the following information:
- Name, address (in Barbados) and contact information of the owner/agent;
- Name and contact information of the Customs broker;
- Date and time of arrival;
- Airline and Flight number or vessel name.
4. Customs duties are levied on all animals imported into Barbados. In order to facilitate the process, you will need to employ the services of a customs broker.
Failure to do so will result in significant delays in receiving your pet.
(If your pet is only visiting and will be returning to its country of origin, customs duties may be refundable at the time of departure. Contact your customs broker for further information.)
5. Upon arrival, your pet will be taken by the aircraft handlers directly to the Animal Reception Centre where it will be examined by a Government Veterinary Officer.
*A Note Regarding Service Animals
At present, Barbados’ legislation does not make special provisions for handling service animals and therefore their entry will be handled in the same way as pets.
6. Once approval has been given for the pet to enter the country, a Customs Officer will apply the relevant duties.
7. In addition to Custom duties, there are veterinary fees applicable on the importation of dogs and cats:
- Landing certificate fee (per animal) – $60.00
- Overtime fees payable to the inspector – $150.00 – $300.00 – depending on the day and time of arrival/inspection (i.e. if your pet landed in Barbados outside of standard Government working hours (8.15 a.m. to 4.30 p.m. Monday to Friday), on a weekend or Bank Holiday).
8. When all documents have been examined and approved and all the necessary fees have been paid, you may take your pet home.