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Protocol for the Importation of Equines

Equine Importation


General Requirements

Horses and other equines imported into the United States from countries affected with screwworm or Venezuelan equine encephalitis (VEE) must undergo a 7-day quarantine on arrival in the U.S.

List of countries that USDA considers to be affected with screwworm

Countries affected by VEE include all countries in the Western hemisphere, except Canada, Mexico, Bermuda, and the British Virgin Islands.

Equines imported from countries affected with African Horse Sickness must undergo a 60-day quarantine on arrival in the U.S. The list of countries from which horses are required to undergo a 60-day quarantine currently includes Oman, the Yemen Arab Republic, and all countries in Africa except Morocco.

Horses or other equines that are imported from other countries must undergo a 3-day quarantine on arrival in the U.S. The list of countries from which horses would be eligible for 3-day quarantine currently includes:

*View the current list of EU countries


Stallions and mares over 731 days of age imported from countries affected with Contagious Equine Metritis (CEM) are subject to additional requirements. Refer to the import requirements for horses from CEM-affected countries for more information.

Horses and accompanying equipment (e.g., tack trunks, saddles, containers) imported from countries affected with Foot-and-mouth disease are subject to additional requirements. Refer to the import requirements for horses imported from countries affected with Foot-and-mouth disease for more information.

Current lists of the disease status for various countries and diseases may be found at this website.

In addition, the U.S. state of destination may have other health requirements that may need to be met. Check with the receiving state for their health requirements.

Horses undergoing entry quarantine will be tested by USDA on arrival. No testing is required prior to the export of horses from another country to the U.S. However, U.S. importers may wish to verify that a horse is not positive for dourine, glanders, equine piroplasmosis, and equine infectious anemia (EIA) before it leaves the exporting country. Horses that test positive by USDA for any of these diseases upon arrival will be refused entry.


With the exception of horses originating from Canada, Mexico, Central America and the West Indies, an import permit may be required. Import permits may be issued by the Animal Import Center or from:

National Import and Export Services (NIES)
4700 River Road, Unit 39
Riverdale, Maryland, 20737-1231
301-851-3300 Phone
301-734-4704 Fax

Download the Application for Import or In Transit Permit form VS Form 17-129

The fee for processing the permit application can be found here.

The completed form should be mailed or faxed to the USDA Animal Import Center at which the horse will be quarantined (see contact information below).

An official health certificate, issued by the full-time salaried veterinary officer of the national government of the exporting country in which the horse has been residing for the 60 days preceding export to the United States, must accompany horses and other equines at the time of presentation for entry to the U.S.


Required Certification Statements

Point of Entry Quarantine

Current USDA fees for horse import quarantine

To reserve space at a USDA-operated quarantine facility, contact the port veterinarian at one of the following USDA operated Animal Import Centers (AIC):

New York Animal Import Center
474 International Blvd
Rock Tavern, NY 12575
(845) 838-5500 Office
(845) 838-5516 Fax

Los Angeles Animal Import Center (LA AIC)
222 Kansas St.
El Segundo, CA 90245
Office main number: 310-955-3311
FAX number: 310-955-3347  

Miami Animal Import Center
6300 NW 36 Street
Miami, FL 33122
(305) 526-2926 Office
(305) 526-2929 Fax  

Tests Required for Entry

Tests for dourine, glanders, equine piroplasmosis, and EIA will be conducted by USDA during quarantine (horses from New Zealand and Australia are exempt from dourine and glanders testing). The official tests are complement fixation for dourine and glanders, cELISA for piroplasmosis, and AGID for EIA. For specific information about import requirements, please contact the Area Veterinarian in Charge, the USDA Animal Import Center, the Regional Office, or the National Center for Import and Export.

Test results from National Veterinary Services Laboratories (NVSL) are generally available 3 days after the date of arrival of the horses. Horses that test positive for any of these diseases will be refused entry into the United States.


Countries that USDA Considers to be Affected with Screwworm

*Or any other part of the world where screwworm is considered to exist.