Like every country around the world, Malaysia has specific rules that govern importing pets. So if you’re planning to relocate to Malaysia and you have a dog or cat, you’ll need to follow those rules. The key to success and peace of mind is to start the paperwork process as soon as you can. There is more to do than you might think, and timing is very important, especially if your pet will need new vaccinations.
Frankly, you can save yourself a great deal of time and frustration if you call us first. Our PacPet animal transport pros know what it takes to get your dear Max (or Maxine, as the case may be) squared away. Not just his necessary documents but all the other requirements for a safe, comfortable journey. If you let us handle his details, you can focus on the human side of your move.
To move to Malaysia, Max must be at least three months old. He will need a microchip, an import license, and a USDA health certificate. To obtain that, however, he’ll also need to have certain vaccinations. For obvious reasons, all the required immunizations must be valid at the time Max enters Malaysia. However, he must be vaccinated at least two weeks before he departs.
- If Max is a dog, he will need to be immunized against distemper, hepatitis, leptospirosis, parainfluenza, parvovirus, and Bordetella.
- If he’s a kitty, he’ll need to be immunized against feline viral rhinotracheitis, calicivirus, and panleukopenia.
Cat or dog, Max will also need a rabies vaccination. It can be a 1-, 2-, or 3-year vaccine as long as it’s valid at his time of travel. His rabies certificate, USDA health certificate and microchip implant record all have to be endorsed by your state’s USDA veterinarian. This has to be done within a certain timeframe (not too soon before Max departs, not too close to his departure date).
Despite all these health precautions and declarations, your furry friend will have to spend a week in quarantine upon arrival. That means Max will have to travel via air cargo, so he can be whisked directly to the quarantine facility at Kuala Lumpur airport as soon as he touches down.
We know it’s tough on pet parents to know their Dear One will have to do this, so here’s what we recommend: let us send Max on ahead of you, so he can fulfill his quarantine duty while you’re making final arrangements for the humans in your family to travel. When you arrive, you won’t have to wait for days to be reunited with your beloved companion. Most of our clients choose to do this, and they are always glad they did.
Many countries restrict or entirely embargo certain breeds of dogs. So if Max is a pooch, before you do anything else, make sure he will be welcome in Malaysia. He may not move with you if he is a:
- Pit Bull Terrier/Pit Bull (American Pit Bull, American Pit Bull Terrier, American Staffordshire Terrier, Staffordshire Bull Terrier)
- American Bulldog
- Neapolitan Mastiff
- Japanese Tosa
- Dogo Argentino
- Fila Braziliero
Malaysia also restricts some other dog breeds. This should not be a problem for you, since Max is a pet, but you will need prior written approval from the Malaysia Department of Veterinary Services if he is a:
- German Shepard/Alsatian including Belgian Shepard and East European Shepard
- Bull Mastiff
- Bull Terrier
It’s a good idea to pick a vet now
We recommend choosing a veterinarian before your pet departs for Malaysia, if you can. That way, if there is an emergency, you’ll have someone to call. Of course, that’s not likely, but Max will need a new vet in any case, to keep him well and happy in his hew home. Finding a vet in Malaysia who speaks English shouldn’t be difficult. Expat forums can be a good place to start, and Yelp is one good source of reviews.
Whew! You’ve arrived
That wasn’t bad at all, was it, thanks to putting our pet-loving pet travel experts on the case. It’s time to celebrate your new home. May we recommend a massage? You might want to get one, too.