Travelling With a Dog in New Zealand

There are certain rules that apply to travelling in New Zealand with a pet.

Most importantly the pet must have lived or been raised in a country that New Zealand considers as rabies controlled. Between 24 to 48 hours before your dog or cat can enter New Zealand it must have a current rabies vaccination and a permit to import.


Travelling with a dog in New Zealand can be lots of fun if you make the proper arrangements, but before you travel make sure your dog has the proper training to ensure he will be well-behaved during the trip. Having a dog collar with a microchip may also be necessary for extra security. Air New Zealand allows calm dog breeds like a chihuahua, pugs, St. Bernard, Sussex spaniel etc. to travel as checked in baggage on all domestic services.


Each dog that is checked in is counted as an extra piece of baggage and excessive charges are applied. A pet carriage fee is charged at the airport which reflects the additional space the pet will take up in the hold of the aircraft and the special treatment required for the pets to ensure safety.


Plot rest stops along the way when travelling in an automobile with your dog. Plan to stop every 3 hours to allow your dog drink water, relieve himself and stretch his legs. Use your phone GPS to pinpoint the location of several veterinary hospitals that are easily accessible along with your route especially within 1-2 hours’ drive and ensure they will be open at the time of your travel. If you are going for a car ride around New Zealand ensure to come with the following item for your dog:

  • Bags to pick up waste
  • Medications if needed
  • Blanket or dog bed
  • Dog seat belt
  • Leash
  • One or two toys
  • Dogs medical records


There are pet-friendly dogs in New Zealand that do not just allow your pet but welcome dogs. An online service like bring Fido provides a search directory for pet-friendly hotels on your trip. Some hotels offer special dog beds, dog spa services, turndown services (down to the treat on the pillow).


Endeavor to ask for the facilities available for your dog and the costs involved for each treat. Most hotels in New Zealand charge a non-refundable pet deposit upon arrival and also a daily pet fee. One of the best ways to spend time traveling with your dog is by camping as it provides an avenue to commune with nature.


Have fun while camping and ensure to make adequate research on if the particular state and national park allows dogs. Emergencies can happen at any time especially when camping, so be prepared in advance and plan before you leave for your trip.

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