Thinking of traveling with a pet?

Aysén Information

In Patagonia, traveling with pets is possible, but for many reasons, it is not the norm. Before inviting your beloved four-legged friend to travel with you, consider the difficulties involved with border crossings, the rules of National Parks and Reserves, the probability of an encounter with wildlife, and the limited services available.

We don’t recommend traveling the Binational Circuit "There are no borders between gauchos" with your pets. Consider that in most places, you will need to walk your dog or cat with a collar and leash. Pets are not allowed in National Parks and Reserves in Chile and Argentina, including the back-country crossing between El Chaltén and Villa O’Higgins. Therefore, if you want to include visits to these places in your trip you will need to plan a solution for the care and transport of your pet.  Most hotels do not accept pets; therefore, you will need to contact them in advance and make reservations with those that agree to accept your four-legged friend.
Some travelers opt to hire a driver / guide who drops them off in El Chaltén and reunites with them in Villa O’Higgins.  The driver transports vehicles, luggage and potentially, pets. This is a possible solution; however, your pet must meet the regulations for international export and transport of household animals. To cross the border between Chile and Argentina with pets, you need to remember the following policies:
Entering Chile with dogs and cats is controlled by the Agricultural and Livestock Service (SAG), whose role is to prevent the introduction of communicable diseases. SAG authorizes entry for household pets provided that the animals meet applicable health requirements.  Owners must: 1) present a Health Certificate issued by the health authority of the country of origin for the pet.  This document must be in Spanish and also in the language of the country of origin (if other than Spanish).  It must have been issued no more than 10 calendar days prior to travel. The certificate must show that:
1.- The animal underwent a clinical examination by a veterinarian within 10 days of departure, and was determined to be free of infectious and parasitic diseases.
2.- The pet was vaccinated against rabies at least 1 month and less than 12 months prior to travel, or a test was conducted to detect the presence of antibodies against the rabies virus (with minimum score of 0.5 IU / ml), within the last 3 - 24 months.
3.- The animal received an internal and external broad spectrum anti-parasitic treatment within 30 days prior to travel.
Additionally, the certificate must include:
- Background information about the owner and transporter (Name, ID, Permanent Address),
- Background information for the pet (vaccinations, examinations and treatments), and the
- Address where you will stay in Chile.

If an owner fails to comply with the documentation and certification requested, the SAG is entitled to take sanitary measures it deems appropriate. People, who leave Chile with their pets for a period exceeding 21 days must also meet these requirements  upon their return. If people leave the country for less than 21 days, they only need to submit a copy of the export health certificate and rabies vaccination certificate or test that determines antibodies against rabies virus, upon their return.
To enter Argentina with dogs or cats, the Argentine government requires complete information about the owner and the animal (breed, sex, birth date, size, weight, description of color and appearance particulars of the pet), a rabies vaccination certificate for animals over three months of age and an exportation document issued from the health authority official in Chile, (SAG), certifying that, prior to shipment, the pet has no signs of infectious or parasitic diseases typical of the species. In case of suspected pathologies, the National Animal Health Service of Argentina, (SENASA), has the right to determine the means to ensure the isolation of the animal and take sanitary measures. In case of other species of pets, consult with SENASA about specific requirements. 

Read more


Photographs that complement this story