How to transport a cat to the USA

transport cat to usa

Transporting a cat to the USA is something we have done many times before. We can arrange all your flights and documentation.

When you consider travelling with a cat to the USA, there is a set of rules and regulations you need to comply with.  These include checking for ticks, fleas and other diseases. We will gladly help you to arrange all the required documentation to make the process easier on both you and your furry friend. You will also need to think about your cat’s age and necessary vaccinations, the correct container to make the flight comfortable, micro chipping, and the AWEC (Animal Welfare Export Certificate).

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Age and vaccinations

Your cat must be older than 12 weeks (3 months). It is recommended that your cat be fully vaccinated at the time of travel. Cats travelling to the US do not need rabies vaccinations, however if you are looking at taking your pet on a Domestic flight after you land in the United States most Airlines will insist your cat be rabies vaccinated. You will need to check with the Airline as to what their regulations are for Domestic Pet Travel. If you are not continuing on with a Domestic flight the Rabies Vaccination is optional. Some people choose to Vaccinate for rabies prior to departure as a precaution as rabies is present in the United States where as others prefer to wait and get it done there.

Vet Certification

When you depart for the US, you need to ensure that you have a completed Vet and Owners declaration. On the day of departure The MPI vet will check your cat for ticks, fleas and worms to prevent the parasites from travelling to America. The vet will also make sure that your cat is fit to travel, certify the container and check that all the needed documents and regulations are met. The Vet will then issue an AWEC (Animal Welfare Export Certificate) the document required by the US authorities.  If you have any questions you are welcome to call us, we will assist you in this regard.

Transporting your cat to the USA

Other than the Certification, the most important factor for travel to the US with your cat is the carrier it will travel in. The carrier should be the appropriate for the size, breed and weight of your cat. You need to ensure that the carrier you use is approved for animal flight by IATA.

Up to 3 kittens under 6 months can travel in the same cage if they are from the same litter and up to 2 cats up to 14kg each so long as they are of comparable size and used to cohabitation.

Bringing your pet cat into the US

All pet cats are subject to a health check and inspection at the ports of entry. They may be denied entry into the US if they have evidence of a disease.  Should your cat appear to be ill, the port authority might require an additional examination by a licensed vet that you need to pay for.


When you have met all these requirements, let us take care of the check in process for your pet while you sit back and relax and pick your cat up when you land in the USA. If you have any queries regarding the regulations or any other pet transport needs feel free to contact us.