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Live animals

Horses live


United States of America (US)

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Importing country requirements

It is the exporter's responsibility to ensure that the animal meets the importing country requirements.

Information on exporting horses from Australia to the United States of America (US) is available from the US Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (USDA APHIS).

To officially enter the US, horses from Australia will require:

  • An official health certificate, issued by the exporting country.
  • An import permit, issued by the National Import Export Services.
  • A reservation at an animal import centre and at an approved CEM quarantine facility, if applicable.

Information on how to obtain an import permit is available from the USDA APHIS website.

Where an importing country issues an import permit, the exporter must ensure the animal meets any requirements in the permit.

Health requirements

Health certification

The exporter must provide an original health certificate stating that the horse was examined and determined to be free of disease, signed both by the examining veterinarian and by a salaried veterinary officer of the national government from Australia to accompany the shipment along with the import permit.

Health certificate

As importing country requirements may change without advice to the Department, you should check the import permit and/or the United States department’s website carefully at the time of preparation for export.

The US requires that the original of the Export Certificate issued by the competent veterinary authority of the exporting country must accompany the shipment with the import permit. Certification and testing is described in the 'Horse Import 3-Day Sample Health Certificate' as provided on the USDA APHIS websiteas at 17 November 2020.

The USDA APHIS website should be checked at time of preparation of the export for any updated version of the required Health Certificate.

Special conditions

The following health certification conditions apply to horses exported to the US from New Zealand (NZ) when they are unable to transit/ tranship at an Australian airport within 6 hours of arrival from NZ. The maximum period of time that the NZ horses are allowed to remain in Australia under these conditions before export to the US is 72 hrs.

HEALTH CERTIFICATE - Horses exported from New Zealand to USA via Australia

  1. The horses were transported from New Zealand to Australia. 
  2. The horses were transported directly from the port of arrival in Australia to an Australian-government approved isolation facility that was disinfected before use. 
  3. The horses were inspected by an Australian government officer and confirmed fit to travel. 
  4. The horses were kept in isolation and separated from horses of an unlike health status at an Australian government approved facility while in Australia. 
  5. The horses were transported directly from the Australian government approved isolation facility to the port of departure in transport that was disinfected before use. 
USA accept New Zealand horses co-loaded with Australian horses on the forwarding flight from Australia to the USA.

Other requirements

Quarantine measures

Horses being exported from Australia to the US are considered to be free from screwworm, African horse sickness and Venezuelan equine encephalomyelitis. This means that they require an observation period in quarantine (minimum 42 hours) plus blood testing for dourine, glanders (Australia exempt from both dourine and glanders testing), equine piroplasmosis, and equine infectious anemia. If originating from a country APHIS considers to be free of contagious equine metritis, they will be released after completing the initial quarantine without any further testing.

Return to Australia

If your animal is returning to Australia, you should make yourself familiar with Australia's requirements for importing live animals into Australia. This is important as your animal may have been exposed to diseases that do not occur in Australia.

Basis for Micor entry

Based on importing country website and information.

Entry last reviewed 17 November 2020

Latest updates

18/02/2021 - Extensive changes have been made to all sections of this entry.
Last updated: 31/03/2023 12:34 AMCreated: 15/01/2015 12:39 PM