The State of Hawaii has a strict quarantine of dogs and cats coming into the state meant to protect Hawaii from the introduction of rabies. While the 120-day quarantine is still in effect, pet owners willing to give their pets the proper rabies vaccinations and blood tests and go through the 120 day "waiting period" before arrival will be limited to a quarantine of 5 days.
The five-day period is the maximum stay for pets meeting the criteria, and pets could be released to owners immediately upon arrival. Pet owners hoping for a confinement shorter then five days must present proof that their pet has had two rabies vaccinations, microchip implantation for identification and clean results of blood serum tests. If the pet qualifies for direct release from the airport the cost will be $165. It will be slightly higher if the pet must be held for up to five days. The direct release program only applies if the pet is flying into Honolulu International Airport.
The essential things for owners to keep in mind:
- The pet must have a clear blood serum test with results emailed to Hawaii officials by the testing lab.
- The pet must wait for 120 days after Hawaii officials receive the clear result before entering the State of Hawaii.
- Hawaii officials must receive a health certificate by email from the pet's veterinarian at least 10 days before the animal arrives in Hawaii.
Animal quarantine officials will inspect the pet at the airport, check its chip to confirm its identity and release the animal to its owner if everything is in order.
Please visit the Department of Agriculture's Animal Quarantine Information page on the web for the complete checklist and more information on the location of quarantine stations on outer islands. There is a station on the Big Island in Keaau.
To check restrictions on or permits for other pets, such as birds, rabbits and horses, go to Department of Agriculture's Importing Plants, Animals and Microorganisms to Hawaii page.