Bringing your companions into Vietnam.

23 Sep

It’s a bit complicating, compare with sending packages. But one of the expats here in Vietnam has “been there, done that” and would like to share to us.

So here is the process.

How old is your puppy?  I don’t know if shipping a younger puppy is more problematic or not, but we shipped our 1.5yo Goldendoodle and hedid fine. Breeds with shorter snouts, such as bulldogs, are also problematic (breathing issues at that altitude for that long). The shipper in the US was Cosmopolitan Canine Carriers, Inc.  They did all the logistics and it’s a door-to-door service.  (I don’t have the cost as this was borne by my husband’s employer.)  They picked our dog at our dog sitter (we had to be on the ground here in HCMC before they shipped in order to avoid kenneling him) and dropped him off at our door here in D2.  It took 2 days.

You will need to get the rabies shot for your puppy plus provide the ORIGINAL paperwork of the rabies shot.  You also need to provide the vaccine history.  If you use Canine Carriers, they obtain the International Health Certificate for you. Our dog went from EWR (Newark) to LAX and stayed overnight with an agent.  We were able to send along that evening’s feeding and the next morning’s feeding as well for the agent in LA.  NO FOOD is allowed on the flights during transit.  Puppy will be fed before and after, but not during.  Puppy will be provided with water in a drip container during the flight.

My dog then went from LAX to BKK (Bangkok) which is about a 17.5 hours trip.  He got a “comfort” stop here.
Then BKK to SGN (Saigon International).

The airline was Thai Airlines.  I was told that they do the most shipping of animals internationally.  The cargo area is temperature controlled as well.

I was really apprehensive about the long 17.5 trip and when you add in time before the flight … it’s a long time to ask a dog to “hold it”. Luckily, our dog was provided with shredded paper in the crate (travel crate is also provided for by Canine Carriers), and he only peed in it.

The agent advised us that dogs do better the least number of connections, so it was better that our dog only had one connection and stay in the crate for that long.  They said that dogs can get more stressed with more connections and going in and out.

The air cost was $1375 inclusive of fees.

The deliverer was Saigon Express Agency Limited. The local agent who received our dog was Mr. Tran Thanh Tuan 090 802 6060. You might call him to work with him directly. He might provide you with details and give you tips.

I’m not sure I’d use Canine Carriers in the US since I don’t see that they added any value to the process.  In fact, my CC agent made it more confusing for me about which health certificate to get. I only used them since it was a service that was no cost to me and provided for by my husband’s employer …  but they did manage the
logistics of it all and got our dog to us happy and healthy.

We also shipped our dog’s preferred dog food in advance knowing that they did not sell that brand here in VN.  I would recommend buying and shipping:

*dog food – enough for several weeks until/if you transition it to another brand sold here like Royal Canine.
*dog treats – bones, chews …
*extra collar, extra leash
*grooming items

Those items can be found here but I prefer the quality that we had in the US.

Hope that helps.  Our dog loves it here.

Saigonstay – All the best a local friend can give you!

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Posted by on September 23, 2011 in Living in Saigon


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