What’s Required to Travel to Hawaii With Your Dog?

Follow these guidelines to avoid Hawaii animal quarantine and a hefty fine when traveling to Hawaii with your dog as the state has strict rabies vaccination and health requirements for pets entering the state.

surfer dog
Hawaii remains rabies-free because of the state’s strict travel requirements for dogs. If dog parents don’t follow the Hawaii travel checklist, their dog must stay in quarantine. ©damedeeso/Getty Images
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Traveling to Hawaii with your dog? It takes research and planning as Hawaii comes in No. 1 with the strictest state laws for moving with pets. Whether you are moving or traveling to Hawaii with your dog, know that in order for pets to leave the Hawaii airport, there’s a multi-step process of showing proof of two rabies vaccinations and passing an OIE-FAVN (Fluorescent Antibody Virus Neutralization) blood test measuring the response of the immune system to the rabies vaccine, after a 30 day waiting period. Then, you must meet specific island requirements.

Follow the state’s checklist to ensure your pet won’t get stuck at the Hawaii Animal Quarantine Station.

When to start planning a trip to Hawaii with your dog

Plan early, months in advance, for Hawaii’s tight vaccine requirements, long before flight time, according to Hawaii’s Department of Agriculture (HDOA), Animal Quarantine Station division. Notify your vet as soon as possible to schedule your dog’s appointments during the appropriate time-frame (see below) before your trip.

Review the pre-flight checklist before you and your dog travel to Hawaii

A series of steps must be taken for a dog to be released from the airport through the Hawaii Direct Airport Release. To start, follow this vaccine checklist, which directs you to the correct set of requirements based on your final island destination.

Items on the checklist include:

  • Working microchip required
  • 30-day minimum waiting period after last rabies vaccine
  • 30-day minimum waiting period after FAVN blood sample has been received at lab
  • FAVN report must be received at the Animal Quarantine Station before arrival
  • Accredited vet must complete a health certificate within 10 days of your trip and administer flea and tick treatment before flight
  • Complete HDOA Dog/Cat Release Form
  • Pay DAR fees — $185 in Honolulu; $165 for neighbor island permit

There are additional forms and requirements based on your island destination.

Specific Hawaiian island requirements for dogs

Your island destination and your length of stay determine your travel requirements:

  • Travel to Honolulu, follow Checklist #1
  • Traveling directly to Kauai, Maui or Kona, follow Checklist #2 — Requires prior arrangements with an approved vet to meet you at the airport at your expense
  • Travel to Kauai, Maui or Kona requires a Neighbor Island Import Permit (NIIP) — requested at least 30 days in advance of arrival

Will my dog be quarantined in Hawaii?

“If they do not complete all the requirements in the required timeframe, the dog will not be released and will be held in quarantine in Hawaii or returned to the point of origin at the owner’s expense,” according to HDOA.

Hawaii animal quarantine information:

  • Cost for 120-day quarantine is $1,080.
  • Owners in Kauai may choose quarantine at the Kauai Humane Society at $100/day.

Kauai Humane Society created a video guide to bringing you dog to Kauai.

For questions about the travel requirements with your dog, contact Animal Quarantine Station at  rabiesfree@hawaii.gov or by phone at (808) 483-7151

For all to enjoy paradise on arrival, follow HDOA’s vaccine and island requirements and plan early based on your situation.

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