This woman traveled to Sayulita from Canada with with her pet dog: here’s her advice

travel with pets to Sayulita

Editor’s Note: This travel with pets to Sayulita guide was contributed by Jordy who traveled with her dog on December 6th (to and from Canada). This is only applicable if you are coming from Canada. At the moment, we are still looking for information and first-hand experiences from US travelers.

I am traveling to Sayulita from Canada with my pet dog. Do you have any information? Anything will help, really! Thank you for all your content!

Questions about Sayulita? We always answer reader questions so if you have any, feel free to email us at sayulitainsider[at]gmail[dot]com or send us a message through our channels below:


Travel with pets to Sayulita: Jordy’s personal experience

I was in Sayulita on December 6, 2020 and just got home to Toronto, Canada late last night. It was an awesome trip!!! Even better bringing Cali with me. It was super easy. In order to travel with pets to Sayulita, you need two things:

    1. A health certificate stating that your dog is in perfect condition
    2. Up to date rabies shot
    3. $25 CAD for entry of animals through the Canadian food and inspection agency
Related: Is Sayulita open for tourism?

Cali and Jordi in Mal Paso Beach, Sayulita

I took her to the vet before leaving for her health certificate and paperwork that Mexico requires that proves that she has an up to date rabies shot. It has to be given before 30 days of entering the country and not expire while you’re away. There are two ways to get a health certificate for your pets but I will only share the way I did it. I did it this way because the CFIA building was closed because of COVID.

The health certificate must be issued within 10 days prior to arrival in Mexico. This certificate must have:

  • The veterinary clinic’s letterhead
  • License number of the veterinarian
  • Certificate must be printed. Handwritten documents are not accepted
  • No official endorsement required (signature by a Canadian Food Inspection Agency veterinarian)
See also: Sayulita Northside neighborhood guide
travel with pets to Sayulita

This is a sample template for the health certificate. Download it here.

What else should be in your pet’s health certificate? The Canadian government requires the following:

  • Animal Health DirectorateName and address of the exporter and importer. When the exporter and importer is the owner, the home address and the destination address of the owner of the animal(s) must be given.
  • Identification information of the animal(s) being exported (name and/or microchip number, breed, colour/markings, sex, age, etc.)
  • Confirmation that the animal(s) has/have been immunized against rabies, indicating the date of application of the vaccine and its validity period. Animals under three (3) months of age are exempt from this requirement.
  • Confirmation that the animal(s) has/have been treated against ectoparasites and endoparasites within the six (6) months immediately preceding export (including the date of application and the name of the active ingredient).
  • Confirmation that the animal(s) has/have been found clinically healthy and free of ectoparasites during the clinical examination prior to export.
See also: Sayulita solo travel as an American woman
travel with pets to Sayulita

Cali also traveled to Costa Rica with Jordi. Follow Cali on Instagram, @life.of.california.

Your veterinarian can definitely use his/her own template as long as all the details/requirements above are met. If you want it to be easier, use the template above as it meets Mexico’s import conditions.

My flight was from Toronto. When you go through Canadian customs, you have to declare you are traveling with a live animal on the declaration card. The customs officer will ask for the paperwork. It was really quick and easy. My dog Cali is a small dog so she was allowed to be with me at the cabin. If your pet is under 15 pounds, they can travel on board with you. Otherwise, they will go under the cargo of the plane.

You might also like: How to get to Sayulita from Puerto Vallarta Airport
travel with pets to Sayulita

Jordy and Cali enjoying an afternoon at the Sayulita main beach

I had a layover in Houston, USA. I did not have to check Cali in again because the flight tag they put on her bag goes straight to Puerto Vallarta. I paid a return ticket for her, too.

When I landed in Puerto Vallarta, it was the same process as normal. The only difference is declaring a live animal. They will just take a quick look at your paperwork and then off you go! The Canadian government charged $25 CAD for the entry of animals through the Canadian food and inspection agency. That can be paid for ahead of time or at the airport. I’m not too sure what the USA’s pet travel to Mexico rules are!

Is Sayulita pet-friendly?

Absolutely! You can bring your dogs to any restaurant and bars in Sayulita. Most hotels in Sayulita also accepts pets. When you enter restaurants, they will automatically give a water bowl to your dog. Sayulita dogs are also often unleashed they can roam around freely. Your pet will definitely love Sayulita!

Planning to travel with pets to Sayulita? if you have any questions, leave them in the comment box below and we will try our best to answer!
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2 Comments. Leave new

  • Gisele Beaulieu
    December 27, 2020 22:14

    Which airline did you fly on?
    Pet on board?
    Under the seat in front of you?
    Pet carrier and size you use?
    I am asking because some airline have a very small space to put the carrier under the seat. Thank you.

  • Hey Gisele,

    I flew with United Airlines from Toronto>Houston>Puerto Vallarta.

    I brought Cali (my dog) onboard with me. In a soft sided carrier. You can find them on Amazon or any pet store and they will have a “fly safe” tag on them so you know it’s ok. I would highly recommend soft over hard. You can move it around easier by your feet.

    Most airlines I’ve flown with are very easy going when it comes to bringing her onboard. I usually open the front of it during take off just a little bit so I can put my hand in there.

    Most Canadian airlines are strict about having your pet in the carrier during the duration of the flight, however, I find that united tend to be a little more relaxed about it. I was able to have Cali in the middle seat beside me on a blanket on this trip.

    I hope this helps! If you have anymore questions let me know 🙂


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