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Expat’s Guide to Owning a Pet in Saigon: Customs, Regulations, Which apartment buildings and Resources

Posted by jeanseb on March 6, 2023

Having a furry friend by your side is one of life’s greatest joys, and many expats in Saigon share this sentiment. 😺🐶 However, owning a pet in a foreign country can come with its own set of challenges. From navigating customs procedures to finding a pet-friendly apartment, here’s everything you need to know about owning a pet in Saigon. 🌍🏠Expat's Guide to Owning a Pet in Saigon: Customs, Regulations, Which apartment buildings and Resources 1

Customs Procedures: If you’re planning on bringing your pet with you to Saigon, it’s important to know the customs procedures. 🛃 Vietnam requires pets to have certain vaccinations and paperwork in order to enter the country. Dogs must be vaccinated against rabies and have a microchip implanted, while cats need to be vaccinated against feline distemper and have a microchip as well. Additionally, pets must have a health certificate from a licensed veterinarian within 10 days of travel. 🐾📋

Living in an Apartment: Finding a pet-friendly apartment in Saigon can be a bit of a challenge, but it’s not impossible. Many landlords are willing to allow pets, especially if you offer to pay an additional pet deposit. However, it’s important to keep in mind that many apartments in Saigon are small, so it’s important to choose a breed that will be comfortable in a smaller space. Some popular apartment-friendly breeds include Pugs, Shih Tzus, and Chihuahuas. 🏢🐕


Here is a list of dog-friendly restaurants in Ho Chi Minh City, sorted by district:

District 1:

  • Indika: Located in the heart of District 1, Indika features a beautiful garden area that sets the perfect backdrop for a memorable date night or group dinner. 🌿🌼🍽️
  • The JOI Factory: A fusion-inspired restaurant, The JOI Factory offers an enticing selection of sandwiches, noodles, western-style salads, and rice dishes. 🥪🍝🥗
  • Lost and Found: While not strictly a restaurant, Lost and Found still welcomes dogs with open arms. The occasional presence of the owners’ dogs, including a charming malamute, adds to the friendly atmosphere. 🐾🐕
  • The Refinery: As an upscale establishment, The Refinery offers a refined dining experience with a focus on European and Asian fusion cuisine. They have a pet-friendly outdoor seating area where you can enjoy their delicious menu with your canine companion.
  • Villa Royale Antiques and Tea Room: This charming tea room offers a unique atmosphere with its vintage decor and antique furniture. They welcome dogs in their outdoor seating area and even provide water bowls for your furry friends.

Thao Dien (District 2/Thu Duc):

  1. Johnny B Good: This spacious villa-style bar and restaurant in Thao Dien warmly welcomes dogs, making it an ideal spot for large groups. They even have a swimming pool where well-behaved dogs can enjoy a refreshing dip.
  2. R House: As a rescue-dog themed bar/restaurant, R House goes the extra mile to accommodate your furry friend. However, please note that there are often many other dogs present, which can lead to a lively and noisy atmosphere.
  3. Saigon Outcast: Recognized as one of the most dog-friendly locations in Thao Dien, Saigon Outcast offers a range of dog-specific activities. Even during events like beer fests, you’ll find many happy canines enjoying the festivities alongside their human companions.
  4. Snap Cafe: Nestled amidst lush greenery, Snap Cafe provides a lovely outdoor setting with a fusion menu encompassing Mexican, Vietnamese, and American cuisines. It’s an excellent choice for groups, particularly for brunch gatherings.
  5. Wild Thyme: Boasting a classy interior, impeccable service, and delectable food, Wild Thyme offers a sophisticated ambiance where you can relax with your dog. While you enjoy healthy smoothies and sizable salads, your dog can enjoy the poolside environment.


List of Most Pet-Friendly Apartment Buildings In Saigon
2- The Ascent (D2)
7- Saigon Pearl  (Binh Thanh)
8- City Garden (Binh Thanh)



Access to Pet Clinics:

Saigon has a number of pet clinics that offer a range of services, from routine check-ups to emergency care. One of the most popular clinics is Saigon Pet Clinic, which has been serving the expat community for over 20 years. They offer a range of services, including vaccinations, dental care, and surgery. Another popular option is Animal Doctors International, which has a team of international veterinarians who can communicate with expats in English. Additionally, many of the larger hospitals in Saigon also have pet clinics, so you can rest assured that your furry friend will have access to the care they need.

Other Activities:

There are plenty of activities that you can enjoy with your pet in Saigon. One popular option is taking your dog to one of the many dog parks in the city, such as Diamond Island Dog Park or Tao Dan Park. These parks offer plenty of space for your dog to run around and socialize with other pups. Additionally, there are a number of pet-friendly cafes and restaurants in Saigon, so you can enjoy a cup of coffee or a meal with your furry friend by your side. Just be sure to check with the establishment beforehand to make sure they allow pets.

In conclusion, owning a pet in Saigon can be a rewarding experience, but it’s important to be aware of the challenges that come with it. From navigating customs procedures to finding a pet-friendly apartment, there are a number of factors to consider. However, with the right preparation and resources, you can ensure that your furry friend will be happy and healthy in their new home.

Resources and Links:

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