How to fly your dog overseas from Koh Phangan

23 Sep 2021

Are you leaving the island but have a dog? Well, you’ll need to get clued up about how to take your furry friend with you.

Thankfully, we have a few experts here who can help. Adopt A Furry Friend have been caring for the island’s animals for the last few years and helping with the overseas adoption and assisting people travelling to their next destination with their fluffy pal. It is thanks to them that we can make this article and hopefully you will be more clarified on the process of flying your dog outside of Thailand.

But first,

Phangan Animal Care for Strays (PACS) is an organisation that many will be familiar with and they are put under enormous strain when visitors to the island take on a puppy or dog, that becomes reliant on that person, but that person eventually leaves. These dogs are left to fend for themselves and are at risk because they cannot make it on the streets like other dogs. With that being said, hopefully, if you’re reading this you are already committed to your dog(s) for their whole lifetime, if you are still thinking about getting a dog or puppy then we suggest you read this article first ‘Getting a Dog or other Pet on Koh Phangan’.

So how do you do it?

The process below is for a dog adoption from Koh Phangan to Europe, but is roughly the same for many countries including Canada and America, although these countries are easier and cheaper. Pricings are a rough indication of costs, subject to change and vary from animal to animal, but in general, cats are cheaper and most small, middle and medium-large size dogs roughly fit these prices.

 

The Process 

The dog will be vaccinated if they have not already been. This is free of charge when concerning animals from ‘Adopt a Furry Friend’, as they aim to vaccinate these animals against deadly illness, whether they are adopted or not. This will leave the animal protected from all common illnesses, much the same as vaccinations given as standard practice in Europe. 
The first vaccine can be given at 8 weeks old. 
The second vaccine, with additional rabies, is given three weeks to a month later. 
They recommend a third vaccine, three weeks to a month later, when preparing for international travel in order to comply with new European animal welfare standards.
Prices depend on the clinic chosen. 

The dog is microchipped in order to be able to enter Europe and most other countries. This costs 1,000 - 1,500 Baht, availability depending.

4 weeks after all vaccinations are completed (so immediately if the animal was already vaccinated), the dog's blood will be sent for testing, to prove they have the antibodies against rabies in their systems. This takes 90 days meaning that the earliest time a puppy is able to fly to Europe is at 7 months old. 
This costs 5,000 Baht, plus 100 Baht for blood taking and serum making. (500 Baht for non ‘Adopt a Fury Friend’ animals.) (This process is not necessary for America, Canada or Russia, but the dog must have all vaccines 30 days prior to starting the next steps, which mean dog flying to these countries can fly at 4 months old).
 

Your pet must be kept safe from external and internal parasites like worms, ticks and fleas in order to keep them healthy and safe. Depending on the weight and age of your dog this will cost around 500 baht per month (the average time of processing is 4 months).

10 days before travelling, the dog will need to receive a vet check, health certificate and apply for an export license. This will all be taken care of by our export specialist at a total cost of 5,760 Baht. (Pet transfer to Koh Samui – 1,500 Baht. Vet check - 1,500 baht. Health cert - 1,000 baht. Application paperwork – 500 baht. Export license - 260 baht. Collection of Export License – 1,000 Baht.)

The dog will need a special tick and flea treatment, a de-worming tablet and a heart-worm tablet, which must be signed off by the vet. This costs 200 baht

If your pet is flying to the UK, an export license must be obtained in Bangkok instead. This will be taken care of by a different export specialist at a total cost of 5,300 Baht. (Pick up at arrivals at the airport – 1,500 Baht. Transfer to livestock department for licensing – 1,500 Baht. Paperwork and Export licence – 800Baht. Drop off at check-in or with flight volunteer – 1,500 Baht.)

If you wish to do the export license yourself, the export expert can advise you how, at a fee of 500 Baht per day.

Providing all goes to plan, the dog will then be free to fly!


They will need a travel box. This costs 2-8,000 Baht depending on the size needed.

They must then fly to Bangkok as cargo (unless accompanied by yourself or a volunteer, who can take them by train or any means desired to Bangkok) A cargo flight to Bangkok costs between 1,000-3,000 Baht (200 baht per kg of the dog's weight) and can be arranged by the export specialist. There is a charge of 1,500 to take the dog to the airport in Koh Samui.

Then the dog must be picked up from their internal flight and taken to check in to their international flight, with their flight volunteer, to take an international flight to their destination country. Cost 3,000 Baht. If the dog is flying with the owner or the flight volunteer the entire journey, this is not necessary. 

International flight costs can vary hugely and are substantially cheaper if the dog is accompanied by its owner or a flight volunteer. 

Most Arabic airlines do not accept dogs on their planes. 

Adopt A Furry Friend can help arrange a flight volunteer and help with flight recommendations to make this part as affordable as possible. If an agent is needed to help with this process, there will be a fee of 500 Baht. 

For a rough flight cost guide please see below… 
*Aeroflot charges 75 USD, set price for any dog. *KLM and Air France charge 200 USD *Korean Air, Lufthansa, Swiss Air and Austrian Air charge 400 USD *Thai Airways charges 600- 750 USD * the US. American and Canadian airlines provide much cheaper flights for dogs.
Prices are given in USD but will need to be paid in Thai Baht at the check-in desk and at the current exchange rates.
 

If you choose to have your pet sent by cargo the cargo company will collect your pet from the airport, process their export license and deal with all procedures in Bangkok. This will be confirmed by a direct quote from the cargo company but is around 20-60,000 Baht. If an agent is needed to arrange this for you there will be a fee of 500 Baht per day. 
 
 

On arrival, the dog will need to pass a check at an approved Border Inspection Post (BIP) at an international airport. Unfortunately, this is where we are no longer able to assist. This inspection is normally straightforward and simple but maybe at a cost. Each country is different and it is the new owner’s responsibility to arrange this part of the dog’s journey. This simply involves contacting your local international airport and asking about animal importation and charges on arrival. 

The price for getting your dog overseas can vary greatly in either direction for a number of reasons. For Example: If you are here to accompany your pet yourself, can do some of the processes alone, the animal is not part of the ‘Adopt a Furry Friend’ project or you choose to send your pet by cargo. 

The total cost of the process for an average-sized Koh Phangan dog, with flight volunteer from Bangkok, being adopted through ‘Adopt a Furry Friend’, should be around: - 24,000 Baht (620 EUROS) for all medical and travel costs including Bangkok flight and travel crate. - Excluding international flight costs, which depend on destination country and fostercare. 

Most importantly of all, the money that you spend saves an animal from a hard and dangerous life living on the streets of Koh Phangan. Every day these animals risk their lives crossing busy roads to find food, get into fights over territory, risk poisoning from the local community, battle viruses and diseases rampant in Thailand and sleep cold, lonely and hungry on the streets. 


Other notes:

The current price to Europe is around €1000 euros.
Add an extra £200 and an extra day of travel by car, train or boat via France or Holland, if you need to get to the UK.

It's roughly an extra 6000 Baht if you are from the USA now due to the new ban on dogs

Isreal costs the same as Europe but doesn't have the 90 waiting period, it’s shorter.

Canada is cheaper to do the paperwork as you don't need the titer test but the flights cost more. It’s roughly around 800 CAD all up but can be more if you live far away from a main international airport.

Developed Asian countries are the same as Europe but some don't require much at all.

Bali is extremely hard and expensive to get your dog into.

Summary

When you take on a dog or any other animal in fact on Koh Phangan you must make the commitment for life, think in terms of 15 years. So, if you need to leave, they leave with you. Of course, there is financial insurance but for a lifetime of cuddles, love, loyalty and fun, it is so worth it!

Thank you so much to Adopt A Furry Friend for the information provided. If you would like to support their work you can here.