Helping to get your pet home safe and sound

You’ve fallen in love with a dog and need to get him from Thailand to your home. What to do? It’s not as hard as you think with the right help along the way.

Friends of Rescue recommend Action for Dogs and Relo4Paws – Click on the links below for more details and to contact them direct.

Action For Dogs

Established in 2016, Action for Dogs specialise in international relocations to and from Thailand. They work with a number of airlines to get your pet safely to his or hers final destination. They also run a foster house so your pet can stay with them if you are unable to stay in the country. Click the link below to find out more.


Based in BKK and with years experience , Relo4Paws is one of the more well know pet relocation agencies that can help you with everything needed to get your pet safely home. They can arrange everything for you from full vaccination and vet services and to all aspects of getting the right paperwork ready for exporting your pet abroad. They also meet you at the airport to ensure and easy check-in service. Click the link below to find out more.


Information regarding the Department of Environment Food & Rural Affairs (DEFRA). Information regarding pet travel to the UK and via Europe. Click the link below to find out more.

So, you’ve fallen in love with a beach dog or a shelter dog and can’t bare to leave him behind? Hundreds of people find themselves falling in love with dogs abroad every year.

But how easy is it really to take your new friend home?

The following information is a guideline only and has been taken from Action for Dogs website.

What you need to know

If you are from Europe or the UK, then it will take around 4 months from start to finish before you can fly your dog home. For Canada and USA it is considerably less, around 4 weeks and is relatively straight forward. For Australia and NZ it is more complex.

If you are adopting from a shelter they will look after the whole process for you which makes things much easier. If you are adopting a stray dog or a pet dog then you either do everything yourself or employ a pet relocation agency to take care of everything for you. There are many Facebook groups set up to help people like yourselves and they can be a mine of information.

The first step is to take your dog to the vets. First, they will check his blood to ensure he is healthy, and they will inspect the dog gums, temperature and general health. Your dog will need to be microchipped and then it’s vaccine time.

Firstly his rabies vaccine and his first mixed vaccine. The vet will issue you with a vaccine book with future appointments listed. Ensure the vet knows that only one rabies vaccine is needed as not all vets have experience with sending animals abroad. The vet should manually sign each vaccine label in the book, and the book should be completed with breed, colour, sex and date of birth. The microchip sticker should be inserted into the relevant part of the book. Ask your vet at this point to register your ownership and send off for the ownership certificates.

For Canada and America, that’s pretty much it until departure. For Europe and the UK there’s a few more things that need to be done.

After 30 days you will need to take your dog to get his blood taken for the rabies titer test, which is needed for all European and UK destinations.

The blood should be spun, frozen and couriered to the destination lab before the sample deteriorates, which is approximately 7 days without refrigeration.

Assuming you have passed the titer test or don’t need one (USA/Canada) then your next step is to book your dog onto a flight home. For most airports this is very straightforward – call your airline and ask them about their pet policies. You will need to find a flight volunteer if you cannot fly the same time as your new pet.

Before you fly home or arrange for a flight volunteer we recommend using an agency to help you check all your paperwork is in order, or check the rescue you are adopting from to see what their policy and process is.

You will need to take your dog to a government-approved vet for de-worming no more than 5 days before the dog’s arrival date at your home destination (not necessary for cats).

When this is done, go to Livestock office at the airport. Its a good idea to use an agency for this or check that your rescue centre can help with this. Here the vet will take your photo, check your dog over, check all the paperwork and will issue the relevant permits.

Day of departure

Ensure you arrive at the airport with at least 3 hours to spare and head over to your check-in desk where they will check your paperwork, issue “oversized baggage” tickets, zip tie the crate and then they are gone. If you use Relo4Paws they meet you at the airport and help you with the check in process.

All of the above is a guideline only and various factors will determine which process applies to you and your dog. There are many people who can help you and everyone will be working together to make sure your dog arrives safe and sound to his new life with you.

Adopting a dog from Thailand is a wonderful thing to do.

Let’s do something beautiful together