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Trinidad and Tobago - Taking Your Pets

Trinidad and Tobago is part of the international PETS scheme which allows for the easier movement of pets between countries, but there are a number of rules and regulations which must be followed when taking pets to the islands. Only pets that are coming from a rabies free country will be allowed in without spending six months in quarantine. In order to prove that the pet is free from rabies and in general good health you must be in possession of a certificate from a veterinarian that demonstrates that the pet is free from any infectious condition. The pet must also have spent the previous six months living in a rabies free country.

If coming from a country that has a low record of rabies then an import permit must be issued by the Ministry of Agriculture. The application for this must be made a minimum of three months in advance in order to ensure a place is reserved in the quarantine section. There are some fees involved in this and it is a good idea to check with them prior to making the application to ensure that you have the correct documentation and fees ready. Avoiding quarantine can be done by having a blood test carried out at least six months before entering the country.

All pets must be microchipped to approved standards. These can be fitted by any qualified veterinarian. Information on all regulations relating to taking pets to Trinidad and Tobago can be obtained from the website of the Ministry of Agriculture.

The standard of veterinary care is good, most vets have trained at universities in the US or the UK. If choosing to live outside one of the main towns, then a trip to the vet may involve a short journey. If this is a consideration it is a good idea to determine in advance where the nearest vet is prior to deciding on a home. The islands also have a Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, which is affiliated to the UK's RSPCA and provides shelter and care for homeless animals.

Pet supplies are readily available, though some familiar brands may not be available. However, there are several branded foods and pet accessories which are imported into the country and are readily available at pet stores and supermarkets. Obtaining any necessary medications for your pets should also not be a problem as these are usually ordered by the veterinary surgeon.

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