Horses Transported to Mexico Require Permanent ID

As of May 2009, U.S. horses are required to have identification when being transported into Mexico.

The regulations were changed to improve animal identification and because of the reappearance of contagious equine metritis (CEM), a sexually transmitted disease, in the U.S., according to Betsy Noel, purchasing manager at Littleton Equine Medical Center, Littleton, Colo. "They want to ensure horses crossing the border are healthy," she said.

Mexico requires the International Health Certificate for Horses for Permanent Entry (Reproduction or Work) Exported from the United States of America to Mexico. The certificate states that horses need an ID number, tattoo, or microchip. (See the guidelines on the USDA Web site.)

Horses being transported to Mexico must undergo a physical examination by a veterinarian who has successfully completed the USDA-accreditation process.

"The other requirements for the physical description are the sex, breed, age, color, markings, the intended purpose for transport to Mexico, whether reproduction or work, and the state of origin," said Noel.

In addition, requirements include the name and address of the exporter and importer.

The owner is responsible for arranging the importer. Before entry to Mexico, or any other country, the certificates must be endorsed by a federal veterinarian from the USDA"s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service.

Mexico requires horses not have any open or healing wounds, and those horses meet the required health standards. All information on transported horses must be detailed and correct to ensure the correct animal is being transported over the border. The certificates are only good for 30 days.

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Rhona Melsky

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