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USDA announces new requirements for importing dogs from African swine fever-positive countries

8 August 2021, at 12:30am

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is issuing a Federal Order establishing additional requirements that take effect immediately for dogs imported into the United States for resale from countries where African swine fever (ASF) exists.

photo of a woman petting several dogs through a fence

The number of dogs being imported for resale from ASF-affected countries is growing, and APHIS is taking this action to continue its efforts to protect the United States’ swine industry against this devastating disease.

Effective immediately, importers of dogs into the United States for resale from a region in which ASF exists or is reasonably believed to exist, must submit written documentation verifying completion of the following requirements:

  • The dog(s) and their shipping crate/container must be free of dirt, wood shavings, hay, straw, or any other organic/natural bedding material.
  • All bedding that accompanies the dog(s) during transit must be properly disposed of at the U.S. post-entry point(s) of concentration.
  • Each dog must have an ISO-compliant microchip implanted, and the individual microchip number must be verified immediately before each animal is bathed.
  • Each dog must be bathed at the U.S. post-entry point(s) of concentration within 2 calendar days of arrival in the United States. Bathing must be documented in the Veterinary Services Dog Import Record.

ASF is not a threat to human health but is a highly contagious disease of wild and domestic swine that can spread rapidly in swine populations, leading to extremely high rates of morbidity and mortality. ASF can be transmitted via dogs’ fur and bedding, and due to the severity of the disease, APHIS remains committed to taking precautions to protect the U.S. swine population.

USDA continues to work with a wide range of partners including the swine industry, our producers, other government agencies, and neighboring countries to keep ASF out of North America. At the same time, we have response plans in place and incident management teams ready to deploy in case ASF does reach the United States. More information on ASF, partner resources, and additional resources for producers and veterinarians are available on the APHIS ASF webpage.