Animal Health Permits

Last Modified: May 06, 2024

APHIS eFile is a web-based system that allows users to submit permit applications, track applications, apply for renewals and amendments, and receive a copy of the permit—all while online.

Users are required to sign up for a Verified Identity eAuthentication account to access eFile; however, once you receive your eAuth ID and password, it provides a centralized authentication service for all web-based services across the Federal Government. Learn more at USDA eAuthentication .

If you are importing a pet dog or cat, do not apply for an import permit. Contact the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for requirements.

If you are importing dogs for resale, whether through commercial sale or adoption, contact APHIS Animal Care.

If you are importing food products for human consumption, visit USDA's Food Safety and Inspection Service.


Effective May 31, 2022, all new and renewal permit applications for live animals and animal products, organisms, and vectors must be submitted via the APHIS eFile system.

We encourage you to take advantage of the online access option to apply for permits via APHIS eFile. This will help to expedite the entire permitting process and enable users to track the status of their permits, confirm receipt, and easily renew or amend existing permits.

Permits Offered Through the eFile System

Permit NameeFile LinkInstructions
VS 16-3: Application for Permit To Import Controlled Material or Transport Organisms or Vectors or Animal Products and By-ProductseFileStep-by-step instructions for completing VS 16-3 using eFile
VS 16-7: Application for Permit To Import Cell Cultures and Their ProductseFile 
VS 16-6A: Renew and/or Amend Existing VS 16-6A Import PermiteFile 
VS 17-129: Application To Import or Transit Live Animals, Semen, Embryos, and Eggs for HatchingeFileStep-by-step instructions for completing VS 17-129 using eFile (1.52 MB)
VS 16-79: On-Hold Shipment Notification ApplicationeFile

Step-by-step instructions for completing VS 16-79 using eFile

Frequently Asked Questions 

Apply for a Permit by eMail (for Non-eAuthenticated Users)

Complete the appropriate form(s) and send by email. A fully completed VS 16-3 will be required for each new permit, permit amendment, and permit renewal request.

For faster and easier application submission and review, use APHIS eFile to create and submit your application.

Contact Us

Animal Products

Animal Product Import and Export

Mailing Address


4700 River Rd., Unit 40

Riverdale, MD 20737 


Email is preferred. For urgent requests, state "URGENT" in the email subject line.

Live Animals

For general questions related to the import of a live animal:

Live Animal Import and Export

For questions about import permits or permit applications:

Live Animal Import Permit Team

Select Agents and Toxins