The Straits Times
April 10, 2009
Ease up on rigid quarantine rules for pets
I AM writing with regard to Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority (AVA) quarantine demands on pets entering Singapore.
I am re-entering Singapore with my SPCA (Singapore) rescue cat from the United States. It has all its medical records in order, including a rabies-free certification that will allow it to travel in Britain and the European Union. I would like to know why the AVA refuses to recognise the certification and will impose a 30-day quarantine on my Singaporean indoor cat.
I would also like to know why the AVA will insist on another rabies vaccination when my cat arrives. I believe the term 'vaccination' means it covers and protects a human or animal against a particular virus for a set period of time.
I am willing to pay the vaccination fees and quarantine fees and for any number of veterinary check-ups, so long as my cat does not need to be subjected to 30 days in a cage with a high risk of infection. I am also willing to keep my cat in house quarantine, with allowances for an AVA officer to come by and check, or I will give daily updates to the AVA on my cat.
After a long flight, being put in a cage for 30 days with no real familiarity surrounding a pet would be traumatic. Also, subjecting any animal to a barrage of vaccinations will run the risk of illness. Even a baby gets a fever when he is vaccinated.
As a responsible pet owner and speaking for other pet owners, I would like to see Singapore keep up with rabies and pet health-care guidelines and rules in other countries.
Farrah Mohamed Salleh (Ms)