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Rules and regulations for breeding dogs and cats in Japan

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In Japan there are rules, etiquette rules and customs that must be respected by all who raise dogs and cats. Compliance with these rules will avoid further problems and annoyances for the pet owner.

> Registration of Animals and Vaccines

IRegardless of size, all dogs older than 90 days must be registered with the prefecture (Koseki), and be vaccinated against rabies once a year.

Registration is done at HOKENJO or at the city’s veterinary clinics. Upon making this registration, a certificate with the animal’s data will be issued.

> Rabies vaccine

It is mandated by law that every dog and cat must be vaccinated against rabies once a year.

Vaccines can be applied in veterinary clinics or vaccination campaigns.

In veterinary clinics, vaccines can be applied at any time of the year, then all you have to do is present the vaccination certificate issued by the veterinary clinic to the city hall so that it is included in the animal’s vaccination certificate. Vaccination campaigns are held annually in the spring by the city and all registered pet owners will receive a notice of the vaccine at their residence.

> Beware of Lost Animals

When a dog or cat runs away from home, try to communicate the Hokenjo so that your animal can be identified. Animals with an identification tag are located quickly, so it is important to attach the identification tag (provided when your pet was registered) to the collar.

The reception period for dogs and cats collected at the Health Center (Hokenjo) is 6 working days. If the owners of the animals do not show up during this period, the animals collected without an identification plate can be donated. But if a new owner is not found for the animal, it can be euthanized. So, if your dog or cat is missing, call the animal control department at the health center in your jurisdiction as soon as possible.

> Death of the Animal

In many prefectures you can cremate the animal in the municipal crematorium (paid service). For more information, contact your city hall.

> Pet Rentals

In Japan you can rent different types of animals, from rabbits, owls, dogs, cats and others. People who like animals and cannot afford a pet can rent them for a walk in the park, for example.

> Animal Services

In Japan we find several services for your pet, from pet taxi, hotel, onsen, cafeteria, clothes rental and babysitting or escort services.

Animal Nanny, to give small walks or attention. It’s for the busiest owners, no time for the animals.

Clothes rental, some cities have stores that rent clothes for your pet to walk elegantly or take pictures.

Pet Taxi, taxis for animals promise to take pets to the park, salons and emergencies.

Hotel Resort, exclusive hotel for dogs to rest with pool, private room and special food.


Pet Cafeteria with specialized food for pets, with a birthday party option.

Pet Onsen, supervised by professionals with shower and thermal water pool to relax.

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