Dubai has become one of the most popular places in the world for both holidays and permanent relocation. However, when travelling to a new country, there are often rules not just for you, but for your pet too!
Before heading to areas within the UAE, it is advisable to find out what you need to do to get your pet there first. It would be heart-breaking to find your furry friend being declined the opportunity to fly with you due to a few simple rules being missed. We have compiled a comprehensive yet simple guide for pet travel to Dubai to ensure you and your beloved pets can fly together and enjoy your new home or holiday.
Once in Dubai, though, there will be certain things you’ll need to do to keep your pet within the government rules and ensure you are not breaking any laws. Have a look below to see how you and your pet can enjoy the sunshine together!
How many pets can I have in Dubai?
At present, you can bring two pets into Dubai, each one requiring its own permit.
Mandatory pet rules in Dubai
There are several mandatory pet rules in Dubai, some of which can land you with heavy fines if not followed.
Keep control of your dog
The authorities in Dubai want all residents to enjoy the splendour of the area and, as a result, have very tough penalties in place for those that fail to keep their dogs under control in public. Should you be in breach of this, you may receive a fine of up to 500,000 AED and be put in prison for up to 6 months.
Keep your pet vaccinated
If your pet is neither registered nor vaccinated, you could find yourself fined up to 300 AED.
Use your lead and mask
If your pet is being taken outside it must remain on a lead and if it is classed as a large breed, it must wear a mask, too. A fine here could be 200 AED for a first-time offence but will rise if repeated.
Check for legal breeds
Dubai has a list of dog breeds that it simply does not allow in the country. This list has been updated over recent years, so it is always advisable to check whether your dog is allowed in the country prior to planning your trip.
At the moment, the list includes 4 main dog breeds: pit bulls, mastiffs, Japanese tosa dogs and perro de presa canario.
If you do own one of these dogs, it will be confiscated and taken to a shelter where it will then be re-homed in a country that allows such breeds. However, there are circumstances in which you can apply for an exemption and therefore be allowed one of these dog breeds.
The exemptions are:
- If the dog is a service animal
- If the dog is an emotional support animal
- If the dog is used for other medical purposes
Walk pets in permitted areas
Whilst Dubai has several stunning areas that you may wish to visit or take a walk by, it is important to remember where you can do this with your four-legged friend. Marina Walk, Jumeirah Beach Residence, the Palm and Dubai marina are all areas that have a strict policy against dog walks.
Registration and vaccination of your pet
All pets must be registered, vaccinated, and microchipped by the vet services section of the Dubai Municipality. If you fail to get your dog vaccinated, you will likely face a fine.
License for dogs
Any dog in the UAE needs to have a license. We would strongly advise checking our frequently updated page on pet travel to Dubai to find out about licenses and permits.
Check with your landlord
Some buildings will not allow pets – not for fear of damage to property (although this may be a concern), but due to the increased insurance rates the landlord may face due to a pet living there. If you have a pet in your property but the landlord is unaware, you will either be given a period in which to find a new home for the animal, or be asked to leave.
If, however, the community you are living in does not allow pets but the landlord has no issue, you may be able to seek a letter of approval from them for you to keep your pet – it just means it would always have to stay inside.
Nothing too exotic
Exotic pets are forbidden in Dubai and can result in substantial fines. Only zoos, wildlife parks and breeding and research centres are allowed to keep exotic pets. If these exotic pets are taken outside where they are permitted, a fine between 10,000 and 500,000 AED can be issued!
Whilst your pet collection is unlikely to contain exotic animals, high penalties can be incurred for owning one. Using an exotic pet to threaten someone will result in a 700,000 AED fine and/or a prison sentence. If the pet kills someone, then you (as the owner) will face the charge of manslaughter!
Hamsters, rabbits, guinea pigs and even iguanas and parrots are all allowed in Dubai – they just need to have the required import permit. Along with this, you must also have the original health certificate.
Look after your pet in Dubai
If you are found to have mistreated your pet, engaged in illegal animal hunting or bought/sold animals, you could face the heavy fine of 200,000 AED.
If regulations aren’t followed properly, a fine of 2,000 AED will be issued.
Can my pet ride in a taxi in Dubai?
At present, it is not possible for your pets to join you on public transport, although some Uber drivers have been known to allow it if the animal is suitably contained. However, this can prove to be difficult as the driver may not deem your crate or method of containing your pet suitable. There are several pet taxi businesses that have since sprung up that offer safe travel for your pet and are fully insured for pet transportation.
Rules change constantly, and whilst our list above contains all those you will need to follow whilst in Dubai, we would always suggest you contact us for the latest changes. If you need to organise transport to Dubai for your pet then we can help you today with your free quote.
PBS Pet Travel are the experts in pet relocation services. We have over 20 years’ experience arranging flights for all kinds of pets. We know that your pet is the most precious cargo, so we ensure we’ll always go to the extra mile to ensure they’re looked after. Get your free quote for pet travel today, or contact us for more information.