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Animal Health and Emergency Services

Frequently Asked Questions

The questions below are a representative sample of information that is requested from staff in our Division on a regular basis. This does not cover all program areas in the Division, but is provided for general information.

I am planning to move from Virginia to California. What kind of paperwork do I need to have to take my dog with me?
Most states require that companion animals coming into their state be accompanied by a Certificate of Veterinary Inspection attesting to the health status of the animal and indicating a current rabies vaccination. As requirements for each state vary, contact with the appropriate animal health official in the state of destination is advised prior to travel.

What do I need to bring a horse into Virginia?
Virginia's import regulations require that equine entering Virginia have a health certificate and a negative test for equine infectious anemia conducted within the last 12 months.

I am a veterinarian in private practice in Virginia. Where can I obtain pads of the Certificates of Veterinary Inspection for interstate shipment of animals?
Certificate of Veterinary Inspection forms may be obtained from the appropriate regional office in your area - Wytheville, Lynchburg, Harrisonburg, Warrenton or Ivor.

What tests are needed for me to ship dairy cattle to a foreign country?
The U. S. Department of Agriculture is responsible for interpretation of the rules and regulations regarding international shipment of animals. As requirements differ from country to country and species to species, contact with the USDA is required. The Virginia Area Veterinarian-in-Charge may be reached at 804.343.2560 or detailed information can be obtained through USDA's toll free voice response system at 800.545.8732.

I am moving to Virginia. What paperwork do I need to have to bring my dog and cat with me?
Virginia requires that all dogs and cats imported into the state be accompanied by a health certificate with individual identification and the indication that the animal, if over the age of four months, has been vaccinated for rabies (1-year or 3-year vaccine).

I found two of my beef cattle dead in the pasture this morning. Can you do any tests that will tell me what happened?
The regional diagnostic laboratories can perform necropsies on animals and other related diagnostic tests if necessary, such as bacteriology, virology and toxicology. Contact the laboratory nearest you for more information and instructions on submitting samples.

Why did I receive a bill from your office for $1.50 for each sample I submitted for Equine Infectious Anemia testing?
This fee was established and passed into law by the Virginia General Assembly. The $1.50 is charged for every horse bled in Virginia. Funds received from this program are transferred to the Virginia Horse Industry Board to support their efforts in promoting Virginia's horse industry.

Over the weekend, I saw a field with very thin cattle. Who can I call to get help for these animals?
Animal control officials have authority to investigate complaints of alleged cruelty or inhumane treatment of livestock. Contact your local animal control office and report the conditions to them, providing as many details as possible, and request they investigate the problem.

A family in the neighborhood is not feeding their dogs and there is no shelter from the weather for these poor animals. The local animal control office does not appear to have taken any action. What can be done?
Concerns and complaints can be addressed to our office in writing. The situation will be evaluated and assistance offered to the locality to resolve the problem.

I want to help stop the abuse of all animals. How do I do this?
Most localities are appreciative of volunteer efforts from their citizens to help prevent abuse of animals and provide owners with information on proper care. Contact the local animal pound or shelter, a branch of the SPCA, or your local humane society and offer your assistance.

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