Moving To HAWAII With a DOG

July 20, 2013

MOVING TO HAWAII WITH A DOGQuarantine law in Hawaii once required that you quarantine your dog in Honolulu for up to 120 days. This law has been changed and the change is known as the 5-Day or Less Program. Barring some constraints your dog can now be released within an hour of its arrival.


In order to qualify for the 5-Day or Less Program, it’s good to know Hawaii’s Animal Quarantine Law. It will save you time, disappointments, and money. In summary, these are the things you need to know based on the aforementioned law if you’re moving to Hawaii with a dog




During its lifetime, your dog must have been vaccinated twice for rabies. The vaccination must have been more than 30 days apart. The latest vaccination must be done 90 days before your dog’s arrival at Hawaii. Moreover, it must be done not later than the expiration date of the vaccine.

Blood Samples and Test


You must forward your dog’s blood samples drawn by your veterinarian, to an approved laboratory for an OIE-FAVN Rabies Blood Test. The results are valid for 3 years. After these results are received, 120 days must pass before your dog arrives in Hawaii. If your dog arrives before the full 120 days have elapsed, it will be disqualified from the “5-day or Less Program.”

Treatment for Ticks and Pests


Your dog must be treated for ticks and pests by a veterinarian, using an approved product such as Fipronil. The treatment must be recorded by the veterinarian in your dog’s health certificate. The treatment must be done within 14 days prior to arrival of the dog in Hawaii. In case there is evidence of infestation upon inspection of your dog at the station, it will be quarantined despite meeting all the other criteria.

Micro-Chip Prior to Arrival


Your dog must be micro-chipped prior to arrival. However, if the chip cannot be read, the dog will have to undergo a 120-day quarantine.



The original of all documents have to be mailed to the Animal Quarantine Station at least 10 days in advance of your dog’s arrival in Hawaii. Fax and photocopies are not accepted. It is advisable, however, to keep copies for your own record.

Your Agent May Pick Up Your Dog


In case you are not traveling with your dog, you may designate someone as your agent to pick it up from the airport for you.  You can go about this in 2 ways:


  1. List your agent’s name on the notarized Form AQS-278 Dog and Cat Import Form and on the Shipmaster’s Declaration Form required by the airline.
  2. You may also submit a notarized letter stating that your dog may be released to a specific individual.


Moreover, if your dog is not released under the 5-Day or Less Program, it will be quarantined at the main Animal Quarantine Station in Halava Valley. It will cost you $224 if it stays between 0 and 5 days. Fees for additional days will be charged at $18.70 per day.

Animal Inspection Office Hours


The office is open from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. It takes as long as an hour for your dog to be transferred from aboard the plane. So, it is advisable that you schedule its arrival in Honolulu at 3:30 p.m. In case of flight delays, you will not be able to take your dog home on the same day.


 Moving To Hawaii Pets

Fees are as follows:


Direct release of your dog at the airport…. $165.

5-day or Less Program…………………………… $224.

Full 120-day quarantine………………………… .$1,080.


Payment of fees can be processed upon arrival, but it is advisable to mail them together with the documents to avoid long waits. To facilitate processing at the airport, cashiers check or money order may be sent more than 10 days prior to the arrival of your dog. Payment must be made in the exact amount and submitted with Form AQS-278 Dog and Cat Import Form.

For More Information


The Direct Airport Release Coordinator at Honolulu, Ms. Kelly Heiman, offered to answer queries and assist with the paper work free of charge. On March 12, 2013, she gave her phone number as (808)-446-1521 and email address:

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Moving To Hawaii with Pets? What You Need To Know If You Are Bringing Pet

July 3, 2013

Moving to Hawaii houseHawaii is a beautiful paradise with perfect temperatures and incredible views on each island. Get ready for a more laid-back lifestyle by the beach, with great food and people. But before you can relax, you have a lot of preparation, planning, and organization to do. If you’re planning on moving to Hawaii with pets, be prepared for an adventure all of its own. Hawaii has very strict pet immigration laws that you need to follow exactly, otherwise your pets may end up spending their first 120 days in Hawaii living in quarantine and costing you a lot of money.

Ensuring Your Pet Is Healthy

Moving to Hawaii - dogBefore moving your pets to Hawaii, you will have to make sure your pets are healthy. First, you must have up-to-date original records of vaccination from your veterinarian. All animals require two rabies vaccinations at least 30 days apart. Your pets’ blood must also be sent to a lab to ensure that it is free of rabies. Next, you have to submit your pets’ blood work for FAVN testing. Many vets are familiar with this process and will be able to do it for you. Of course, there will likely be fees. This now starts the 120 day wait period before your pets are allowed into Hawaii. It is incredibly important to start this process long before your move.

What Happens If We Can’t Complete the 120 Day Pre-Arrival Period?

Moving To Hawaii PetsIf your pets arrive in Hawaii without finishing the 120 day waiting period they will not be allowed to leave the airport with you. Unfortunately, they’ll have to be quarantined until the 120 day waiting period is over. It is expensive to keep your pets in quarantine, at $14.30 per day plus fees of approximately $224. Having to leave your pets in quarantine can be a traumatizing experience for both your family and your pets so it is incredibly important that you plan ahead and follow the steps required for moving pets to Hawaii.

Certification for Dogs and Cats

Moving To Hawaii Pets 4You’re probably getting a little overwhelmed by now and unfortunately you still have more to do. If you are moving your dog or cat to Hawaii, you will need to fill out a Dog and Cat Import form. This form is processed about 30 days before your dog or cat leaves for Hawaii. Your pet will also require a health certificate from your vet. Ensuring your pets are in great health before the big move helps to prevent them from giving bugs to animals in Hawaii and from getting sick in the new environment too.

What about Other Types of Pets?

Two permits are required for most types of birds. Birds have to go through a seven day isolation period at a vet before entering Hawaii and you will have to get a Certificate of Veterinary Inspection before moving to Hawaii. Many birds and other animals are restricted in Hawaii, while some are not allowed at all. Prohibited animals include; salamanders, frogs, snakes, some types of parrots and parakeets, many types of finch, and wild dogs. Some animals that are restricted are; monkeys, many types of turtles, some birds, and iguanas. Before moving to Hawaii with pets make sure your pets are allowed into the state.

Finally Time for the Flight

Moving To Hawaii Pets 5After the long wait period, it’s finally time for your pets to fly to Hawaii. You will need airline approved travel crates. If your pets aren’t already familiar with crates, it’s helpful to do some training before the flight. Inspection hours are between 8AM and 5PM for imported pets at the Honolulu international Airport so your pets’ flight has to arrive no later than 3:30 PM or they will have to stay overnight and be inspected the following day. If you are booking connected flights to another island, allow for a minimum of four hours between flights for your pets to be processed into Hawaii.

Safe Arrival to Your New Home

Moving To Hawaii Pets 2After your pets’ long flight, your airline carrier will let you know where they can be picked up. You will need ID and only the person whose name is on the import form will be able to pick them up, unless you provide a letter that someone else can do it for you. If for some reason you can’t pick up your pets from the airport, they will be taken to the Animal Quarantine Station. You will want to avoid this for your pets’ anxiety and for the hole in your pocket. It costs $224 for a stay of 0 to 5 days.

I Got It All Covered: Can We Go to Our New Home Now?

After you get all your documents, shots, blood work, certificates, and complete the 120 day waiting period, you deserve a cold drink at the beach close to your new home and so do your pets. Bring your original paperwork with you to the airport and your pets will be able to leave with you. Now it’s time to kick back and begin enjoying your new lifestyle by the water. You will be able to rest assured that your pets are very healthy and ready to adapt to their new environment. It won’t take long to forget about all the agony and stress you had to go through in moving to Hawaii with pets. 

Is This Process Too Overwhelming? Try a Pet Moving Company

If you are overwhelmed by the process of moving pets to Hawaii, there are people who can help. Hawaii has pet moving companies that can prepare all the required documentation, paperwork, booking arrangements, and even pick your pets up from the airport. There is a fee involved but many people who have used this service don’t mind the fee because of the peace of mind it gives them, knowing their pets will make it safely into Hawaii.

Your Pets Are Now Residents: Time to Start Following Hawaiian Pet Law

Moving To Hawaii Pets 1Hawaii has strict pet laws. There are noise nuisance laws, as well as typical laws regarding dogs being on leashes and picking up their waste. Dogs and cats are also required to have a microchip implants. Breaking laws will result in fines, and for importing an illegal animal you could spend up to three years in prison. Be safe and smart and make sure it is legal to bring your pets to Hawaii. Moving pets to Hawaii is expensive. By being prepared, you can avoid major expenses, and prevent a lot of headaches. Good luck on your journey and enjoy Hawaii.

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