Elsewhere on DAFF
Spotswood Animal Quarantine Station, Melbourne
Spotswood Quarantine Station contact details
Postal Address: PO Box 1079, Newport VIC 3015
Physical Address: 43–47 Craig Street, Spotswood VIC 3015
Phone: +61 3 9391 1627
Fax: +61 3 9391 0860
Administration office hours:
- Monday to Friday: 8:00 am to 12.00 noon and 1:00 pm to 4.00 pm
- Weekends and Australian public holidays: closed
The Spotswood Animal Quarantine Station is located approximately 12 kilometres west of central Melbourne and approximately 25 kilometres from the Melbourne Airport. The Spotswood railway station is about 400 metres from the front gate.
A location map can be viewed at Google maps.
- The importer, as listed on the DAFF import permit, is responsible for the animal during the quarantine period, the release of the animal from quarantine and all associated fees.
- The importer may provide written permission for other persons (e.g. family members, friends or pet transport agencies) to act as their agent. An authorised agent can make enquires, visit or collect the animal at his/her eligible release date.
- The quarantine station must receive this written permission by the quarantine station before DAFF will permit an agent to visit, collect or request information about an animal.
Booking quarantine accommodation
- You can book quarantine accommodation for your cat or dog once you have received a DAFF import permit.
- You must contact the quarantine station and provide:
- A valid DAFF Import Permit number
- Flight number and date of arrival in Australia
- Contact telephone number
- Details of any special needs your animal may have
- You must provide an air waybill number and pay set quarantine fees closer to your animal's date of departure to confirm the quarantine accommodation booking.
- Imported cats and dogs cannot travel on domestic flights within Australia. Your cat or dog must arrive into Melbourne on an international flight. If there are no direct international flights from the country of export into Melbourne, contact the DAFF Animal Import Operations Branch or telephone +61 2 6272 4454 to discuss flight routes.
- The granting of a DAFF import permit does not guarantee a space for your animal as the Australian Quarantine Stations may have availability restrictions.
Updating your contact information
You must contact the quarantine station to update your Australian contact details prior to the animal's arrival. Please provide an email address.
If you will not be in Australia during your animal's quarantine period you must provide the quarantine station with the name, address and telephone number/s of a contact person who is based in Australia. DAFF will attempt to contact this person if your animal experiences any feeding or health problems.
- A Biosecurity Officer will meet your animal at the airport. You cannot visit your animal at the airport.
- In general and wherever possible, flights should be booked to arrive in Australia between the hours of 8:00 am and 4:30 pm, Monday to Friday.
- DAFF recommends that you arrange for your animal to arrive in Australia early in the week. This will assist staff to settle your animal into their accommodation and, if required, arrange prompt veterinary attention for animals with medical conditions.
- Animals will not be received on Australian public holidays or weekends.
- Please contact the station office for further information on collection hours.
- You can collect your animal between the following hours:
- Monday to Friday: 8:00 am to 12:00 noon and 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm
- Weekends and Australian public holidays: 9:30 am to 10:30 am
- DAFF will only release the animal to the importer or their authorised agent. This authority must be arranged with the quarantine station prior to the animal's collection. Photo identification must be presented at the time of release.
- The importer is responsible for collecting the transport crate with the animal. DAFF will dispose of any uncollected crates.
- Due to the large number of animals at the station, DAFF cannot guarantee the return of belongings that arrive with your animal.
- Animals cannot leave quarantine prior to their eligible release date.
- If you cannot pick up your animal on their eligible release date, you must contact the Quarantine Station before that date.
In most cases your animal cannot stay beyond their eligible release date.
- Many animal transport companies can collect your animal from the Quarantine Station and provide boarding.
You can find a list of animal transport companies at Independent Pet and Animal Transport Association (IPATA).
- DAFF fees are subject to change without notice. It is the importer's responsibility to regularly visit the DAFF website for current information on DAFF fees.
- You must pay the set quarantine fees when you book your animal's accommodation.
- DAFF will send the quarantine invoice for any variable fees to the importer's address, as listed on the import permit, within approximately seven days of your animal's arrival.
- You must pay your account prior to your animal's release l. If your animal is due for release on a weekend or Australian public holiday, you must pay your account in full on a business day prior as payment cannot be taken on weekends.
- DAFF can accept payment via EFTPOS, cash, Visa, MasterCard or American Express. Payment by bank cheque/draft must be received at least 14 working days prior to your animal's collection. DAFF will not accept personal cheques.
Animals sharing quarantine accommodation
- Animals must be of the same species to share quarantine accommodation.
- The animals' import permits must list the same importer and exporter.
- If your animals arrive in Australia on different dates, they cannot share accommodation DAFF determine that both animals have met the import requirements.
- If one animal is eligible for release from quarantine prior to the other, both animals must spend a minimum of 30 days together. One animal may spend longer in quarantine than would be required if they were not sharing accommodation.
- The station will consider various behavioural, animal safety and occupational health and safety reasons when allowing animals to share quarantine accommodation.
- You must pay full quarantine fees if your animals are separated.
Kennels and pens are cleaned daily and disinfected regularly.
Each kennel has an outside run area and enclosed sleeping quarters with heating facilities for the winter months. There are three different kennel sizes and your dog will be allocated an appropriate sized kennel based on their breed and size.
|Kennel Size 1||Kennel Size 2||Kennel Size 3|
1.5m x 1.5m
1.7m x 1.2m
1.9m x 1.5m
1.5m x 4.5m
1.7m x 7.4m
1.9m x 7.3m
There are two types of cat pens:
- The first type has an inside area of 0.8 metres by 1.75 metres and an outside area of 0.8 metres by 1.8 metres. The inside area contains a sleeping box, litter tray and food bowls.
- The second type of cat pen is completely indoors. They are 1.4 metres by 1.8 metres. Heating is provided in the winter months.
- Importers do not need to provide bedding for cats and dogs. The quarantine facility provides bedding for cats and dogs. If the animal requires additional bedding for warmth i.e. due to age or breed etc this will also be provided by the facility. Any items provided by importer will be destroyed if soiled.
- Bedding, soft toys, comfort items etc that travels in the transport crate with the animal is generally soiled and will be destroyed upon arrival.
- If the importer provides additional bedding, comfort items etc for use during the quarantine period these will be destroyed if they become soiled. If they remain clean during the quarantine period they will be released with the animal.
- Please note that if additional items are provided beanbags and hammock type beds are not permitted.
Feeding, treats and toys
- Facility staff will feed your animal a high quality, nutritionally balanced commercial dry cat or dog food.
- The importer is responsible for providing any special dietary requirements, including prescription diets, if required. Food must be sourced in Australia and sent to the facility prior to animal’s arrival. Please supply enough food to cover the entire quarantine period.
- Do not send food with your animal as it will be destroyed upon arrival due to quarantine risk.
- DAFF cannot reduce the daily animal accommodation fee if importers choose to supply their own food
- To avoid overfeeding, please advise DAFF staff if you provide treats to your animal.
- Do not provide toys that are easily destroyed by biting or chewing, or are suspended by string, as they are a choking hazard. Tennis balls are not permitted.
- Any toy, comfort item that becomes soiled during the quarantine period will be destroyed. If toys, comfort items remain clean during the quarantine period they will be released with the animal.
You can visit and interact with your animal during the quarantine period. The visiting periods are:
11.00am – 12.00 noon and 1.30pm – 3.30pm
1.30pm – 3.30pm
11.00am – 12.00 noon and 1.30pm – 3.30pm
11.00am – 12.00 noon and 1.30pm – 3.30pm
Australian Public Holidays
- You are permitted two visits to your animal each week.
- The station does not permit visiting on the day of arrival, to allow for check in procedures and to give your animal time to settle in.
- You are allowed in your animal's enclosure during your visit. Animals cannot go out of their kennel unless they are entering the exercise yards.
- Visitors must wear fully enclosed footwear at all times.
- DAFF may refuse entry to visitors who are unwilling to comply with staff directions of.
- A DAFF veterinarian must examine your animal and audit the import documentation before your animal is permitted in the grooming room or dog exercise yards. This is usually completed within 72 hours from your dog's arrival at the animal quarantine station.
Grooming (dogs only)
- You are welcome to use the grooming room to groom your dog during the quarantine period, or you can arrange for a professional groomer to attend on your behalf. All private grooming services are at the importer's expense.
- The grooming room is available by appointment only. Importers are restricted to a total of two x 30 minute appointments per week. All appointments must be made 24 hours in advance.
- DAFF recommends that you arrange professional grooming of long or thick haired dogs. The importer is responsible for arranging professional grooming services for animals that arrive in a matted condition or are difficult to groom.
Exercise yards (dogs only)
- You are welcome to use the exercise yards to exercise your dogs during the quarantine period, or you can arrange for a professional dog walker to attend on your behalf. All private dog walking services are at the importer's expense.
- Exercise yards are available for your use during visiting hours. Bookings are not required.
- Staff will endeavour to exercise your dog twice a week if you are unable to visit.
- Exercising will be cancelled at the manager's discretion during wet or extreme weather.
Veterinary attendance for animals
- A DAFF veterinary officer will examine your animal within three days of the animal's arrival at the quarantine station.
- While DAFF's veterinarians will examine your animal for signs of exotic disease or quarantine concerns, the quarantine station does not have a resident veterinarian. A private (non–DAFF) veterinarian can be called to the quarantine station to examine and treat animals suffering from mild illness or injury.
- The importer must complete and submit a Private Veterinary Attendance and Treatment Declaration form with the import permit application. This form authorises DAFF to seek veterinary services for your animal during the quarantine period, if required. You can nominate a private veterinarian. If you do not have a private veterinarian DAFF will contact one on your behalf.
- If DAFF staff become concerned that your animal may require veterinary attention, the station will make every attempt to contact you. The station will not delay in obtaining veterinary care for your animal in the event of an emergency, should you be unreachable.
- Private veterinary fees are not included in your quarantine fees. If a private veterinarian provides consultation for your animal, they will invoice you separately. The importer is responsible for the payment of all costs associated with attendances and treatment by a private veterinarian.
- All private veterinary fees must be paid before DAFF will release your animal from quarantine.
Animals with medical conditions
- DAFF discourages the importation of chronically ill animals, on welfare grounds.
- Importers should consider their animal's age and condition, as travel and climatic stress, when deciding to export their animals to Australia.
- You must inform DAFF if your animal has any medical conditions when you apply for an import permit. Please notify the quarantine station as soon as possible if your animal is diagnosed with a medical condition after the import permit has been granted. This will ensure that your animal's welfare and medical requirements are met whilst in our care.
- You must also advise the station if your animal has any medical/special requirements when you make the animal's quarantine booking.
- All animals entering Australia must meet the DAFF import conditions and be certified as fit to travel and undergo quarantine before leaving the country of export.
Medicating animals in quarantine
- DAFF staff will administer most kinds of medication to your animal while he/she is in quarantine.
- If your animal is on any kind of prescription medication, you must submit a letter from your animal's veterinarian with your import permit application. This letter must outline the animal's medical history, the type of medication required and the dosage rate. DAFF will only administer medication that has been clearly labelled with the:
- animal's name
- owner's surname
- name of the medication
- dose rate
- frequency rate
- route of administration e.g. oral, topical, ear or eye drops, and
- the medication expiry date
- DAFF does not supply medication.
- DAFF can only administer medication between the hours of 8:00 am and 4:00 pm, seven days a week. These are not the hours that the quarantine station is open to the public.
- If your animal requires the administration of medication outside the station’s medicating hours e.g. diabetic/epileptic animals, you should discuss alternative treatment intervals with the animal’s veterinarian prior to import into Australia.
Management of imported medication in the quarantine station
Due to Australian legislative requirements and the potential quarantine risk associated with imported veterinary medication, the quarantine station cannot release any medication that arrives with your animal.
- DAFF will destroy any imported medication following the release of your animal, including medication that may be commercially available in Australia. As such, you should only send medication in a quantity sufficient to treat your animal during the quarantine period.
- You should check whether your animal's current medication is available in Australia. If it is not, you may wish to consider changing to an equivalent medication that is available in Australia.
- You should arrange for a private veterinarian in Australia to examine your animal either during his/her quarantine period or after the animal is released. The veterinarian can then prescribe appropriate medication for your animal.
External parasite treatment
- Australian veterinarians recommend regular external parasite treatment of cats and dogs.
- DAFF staff will treat your animal for external parasites following the last treatment date prior to import, in accordance with manufacturer's directions, throughout the quarantine period.
DAFF staff will retreat animals undergoing an extended quarantine period on a monthly basis.
- DAFF staff will apply additional treatments to any animals showing signs of active parasite infestation.
- External parasite treatments are applied at the importer's expense.
Heartworm prevention for dogs
Heartworm disease occurs in different areas of Australia. Heartworm is caused by the microorganism Dirofilaria immitis and is spread by mosquitoes.
Your dog does not require a heartworm test or treatment to be eligible for import. Preventative treatment can be arranged through a private veterinarian, at the importer's expense.
Australian animal health and registration requirements
DAFF's role is to administer the Quarantine Act 1908. DAFF's primarily concern is to manage the quarantine risk associated with imported goods, including animals.
The importer is responsible for investigating local animal health recommendations and council registration requirements upon the animal's release from quarantine. Contact your local veterinary hospital, animal shelter or council for more information.
08 May 2013