Delilah (AKA – Bringing Pets to Buenos Aires)

Yesterday, I took care of the most important thing I’m bringing – Delilah, the 8 year old, 7.5 pound, mini-pinscher.  She has already dictated whether we were going to move or not (could we take her with us), where we lived (she has to have some outdoor space), an increased security deposit ($900 more just because of her!) and what airline we flew (Delta because they’re the only one that allow pets in the cabin on international flights). Delta was definitely not the cheapest airline, but there was no way I was going to be the one to put Delilah in the cargo hold for 17+ hours. The extra $100 to bring her on with us seemed like a bargain.

From reading some other blogs (Moving to Argentina and Tangotours), it seems like it should be a relatively easy process. The Argentine Consulate has the following rules:

Bringing pet animals into Argentina
The Consulate does not issue permits to enter pet animals into Argentina. Owners must make shipping arrangements with airlines directly. To avoid quarantine upon arrival in Argentina, the following documents are required to enter DOGS or CATS:

  1. Anti-rabies vaccination certificate.
  2. Good health certificate, no older than 10 days from the date of the animal’s arrival to Argentina.

Both certificates must be issued by a licensed veterinarian and certified by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Division, Veterinary Services. To locate an accredited veterinarian and the VS Area Office for your state, visit The Consulate does not need to authenticate these documents, which must be submitted directly to the airline.

Sounds simple enough, so this week I took Delilah to the vet for her checkup and to get a good health certificate and copy of her rabies vaccination. Got that, so now, I’ll just go to the nearest USDA office… What? None in Manhattan? Ok, this is something you should check out in advance as they seem to have a limited number of offices. I found an office out near the JFK airport, so I headed out there. They are located in a large office complex and when I went in, I found only one person ahead of us.  The whole process took about 5 minutes and cost us $24.

I’ll let you know what our experience at the airport and customs is next week.

UPDATE: All went smoothly and I pretty much sailed through immigration, even though my Spanish is horrible. All the paperwork was in order and I paid the fee and zoomed right through.