Importing Chinchillas to the US

Joined
Sep 28, 2011
Messages
6
Hi everyone.

I currently live in Europe, but am considering going to grad school in the US. I do not want to burden my friends or family with having to take care of my chinchilla for 2-3 years so I would like to bring him with me.

Has anyone had any experience with importing chins to the US? I am looking for specific information on what kind of certificates and permits are required.

I have emailed various government agencies, but no luck.

Thanks for your help.
 

chechinchillas

hmmmmmmm
Joined
Mar 10, 2009
Messages
546
Location
CIRCLEVILLE, OHIO
I would call the US border office. I am delivering chinchillas by car to Canada and had to call and ask their border office and their food, drug and animal administration about the requirements.
 
Joined
Sep 28, 2011
Messages
6
Thanks... so far I've contacted:

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: CDC does not have regulations on bringing chinchillas into the U.S.

United States Department of Agriculture: received general info about pet travel.

Animal and Animal Product Import: USDA -APHIS doesn't have animal health requirements for the importation of Chinchillas.

I am currently trying to reach someone at Fish and Wildlife Services, as advised by USDA-APHIS. But no luck.
 

ticklechin

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 14, 2009
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Location
modesto CA
Mark Miller or Riven I believe imported chins into the US, you could private message them, those are their screen names.
 

Jenn

ZooKeeper
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Jan 30, 2009
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6,056
Location
Washington State
my husband works for Customs, and if you don't find out anything, you could pm me and I'll bug him for specific details.
 
Joined
Sep 28, 2011
Messages
6
I've actually already messaged Mark Miller (thank you Mark for your help!) but have in the mean time received different information than what I got from him so I need to double check...
 

partygirlha

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Joined
Jan 29, 2009
Messages
318
Location
Brooklyn, NY
I did have 3 chins shipped in from canada 2 years ago. In addition to the breeder having to deal with the airline and health certificates I had to get permists from http://www.fws.gov/ i got the phone number for the local office and talked to them a LOT before the shipping. They had some strict requirments regarding the shipping carrrier. The import permit was not a lont of money but I had to get it in person and I could not get it until the chins were already in the air - talk about crazy.

It might be different if they fly with you. but call FWS and see what they say. they were very helpful. Evey agancy I called other than them said that other agancies might ahve requirments, but noe of them did (at least not 2 years ago)

I also found the phone number for the cargo hold at the airport and spoke to someone in the office and to the customs offical who was going to be meeting the flight they were one (amazed they let me get him on the phone). eveyone was very helpfull, but I did spend an entire day running all over town getting paperwork done, while the chisn were in the cargo building waiting for me.

PM me if you have more questions
 
Joined
Sep 28, 2011
Messages
6
Ok, after talking to FWS today, here is the info I got. I'm posting it in case anyone ever needs it. I realize most people here are breeders and I think this only applies to pets, but maybe someone will find it helpful. This only covers the US part of the story, countries of origin will also have their own requirement. Also please note that some people told me they had done this without any forms from the FWS, but here's what they said...

1. You need their form 3-177 - Declaration for Importation or Exportation of Wildlife. If your chins are PETS, you do not need an Import/Export Licence, nor a CITES permit.

Here is what they e-mailed me: The chinchilla, Chinchilla chinchilla, provided it is a domesticated specimen, is not a protected species however, as you prepare to import your pet chinchilla into the United States, you must complete Form 3-177, Declaration for Importation or Exportation of Fish or Wildlife. You can find this form on our website at the following address: http://www.fws.gov/le/ImpExp/faqs.htm This form is not difficult to complete.

Please have this form completed and have it, and your pet chinchilla available for inspection as you prepare to import it into the United States.

You must import your pet chinchilla at a designated port. You can find a list of designated ports and contact information for those ports on our website at the following address: http://www.fws.gov/le/ImpExp/Designated_Ports.htm Since this is a live commodity, we require that you contact 48 hours in advance the port where you will be importing your pet chinchilla in order to coordinate its clearance into the United States.

You may have to pay an inspection fee depending on the mode of transport. If you import your pet chinchilla as accompanying personal baggage, no inspection fee will apply. However, if you import your pet chinchilla via air cargo, an inspection fee of $74 will apply.

Now as far as I know, no airline will allow chins in the cabin.

2. A port of entry needs to be chosen from their list and notified 48 hours before the arrival of the chin by fax (no form, just your name, species, quantity, estimated arrival time, flight information and your contact).

3. On the day of the arrival of the chin, a person picking up the chin needs to go to a FWS office in the port of entry with the 3-177 form, airline bill and a letter from whoever sent the chins (saying my name is so and so, I am sending however many pet chinchillas (scientific name) to xy). I believe at this time you pay the $74 service fee.

4. You meet the inspector at the airport and present the form to them, they inspect the chin and you are free to go.

5. Airline requirements need to be checked - IATA regulations for carriers for live animals.

Thank you everyone for your time and help.
 

andypraddo

New member
Joined
Jun 25, 2019
Messages
1
hello! I am in the same situation and bringing my pet chinchilla from Brazil so..

1. Is this inspection made only when the chin gets into the USA?

2. How was the security airport procedure (if it had one) about the chins?

3. Does this form have to be signed, submitted or approved by FWS? I just fill it out and that's it?

4. I live in NJ but I will be landing in NYC because flights from Brazil just go to that airport. Do I need to fill it up according to the place I live (putting NJ infos) because Ive talked to APHIS and they said that I should check state requirements about bringing my Chins but basically Im driving to NJ and once I get out of the NYC airport NJ state laws has nothing to do with chins. and the point is if in NYC airport we meet all the requirements to be free to go

4. Did you need health certificate?

Thank you so much I know its been I long time since you post this but APHIS, CDC and FWS still dont have clear information about chinchillas. They just push the job to someone else and Im looping around and getting nowhere with the vage information they release
 

chinniesnyc

Member
Joined
Nov 22, 2018
Messages
7
Hello! I feel your pain: I recently moved from Europe to the US and brought my two chinchillas with me. I can't help with the specific paperwork (and this may be too late!), but I used a pet relocation agency that was absolutely super and took care of all the nitty gritty paperwork (it *is* really hard to find specific information about chinchillas). If it helps anyone, here is the link: https://www.petrelocation.com/
 

Pop Alexandra

New member
Joined
Mar 13, 2018
Messages
3
Hello! I feel your pain: I recently moved from Europe to the US and brought my two chinchillas with me. I can't help with the specific paperwork (and this may be too late!), but I used a pet relocation agency that was absolutely super and took care of all the nitty gritty paperwork (it *is* really hard to find specific information about chinchillas). If it helps anyone, here is the link: U.S. and International Pet Shipping Services | PetRelocation
That would also be my first choice. I'd rather pay some more than encounter any issues at customs. Do you know anything about Dogs, cats, spiders and snakes. Importing animals into Canada. ?
 

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