Mali has no quarantine restrictions for pets; however, proof of rabies vaccination and a current certificate of good health must accompany pets entering the country. It is therefore important to carry an immunisation record for your pet. Dogs and cats are required to have yearly rabies shots. Basic veterinary services and routine immunisations are available through several private veterinarians.
Owners wishing to ship pets should contact all airlines on which a pet is to fly to find current information and to make arrangements several months in advance of the flight. It is also useful to contact the embassy or consulate of the destination country to be aware of their regulations.
Airline restrictions currently prohibit pets from being shipped to many airports between the months of May and September because of the risk of heatstroke. Pets must be booked on flights well in advance: you should indicate to the airline when you book your flight your intention of travelling with a pet. You will incur an excess baggage charge for your pet, payable for each leg of your itinerary. To determine the cost of transportation for your pet, contact the appropriate airlines in advance.
On some airlines, certain smaller pets may fly in the cabin as excess baggage, but certain others, and usually all animals weighing over 5 kg (about 11 pounds), must be transported in the hold of flights you are travelling on.
The cage you must provide for transporting a pet in the hold must be large enough for the pet to be able to stand, to turn around, and to lie down naturally. Wire mesh or weld mesh containers are forbidden for international air transport; only securely built shell-shaped containers made of fibreglass or rigid plastic and locked to be tooth and claw-resistant will be accepted.
At time of writing, to enter or transit France with a pet you will have to show that your pet has been tattooed (series of numbers and/or letters pricked and stained with indelible ink inside the ear) or has a microchip implant for identification purposes. You will also need to show a health certificate (certificat sanitaire), issued no more than 10 days before transportation, and rabies vaccination certificate issued by an official veterinary surgeon stating that rabies vaccination has been made more than 30 days and less than one year ago or re-vaccination within one year.
When transiting Paris, you need several hours between flights and must keep on your person all documents (for you and your animal) required to enter France, as well as of those for your final destination.
It is important to note that some ethnic groups in Mali are known to eat cats and/or use them for black magic. A number of outdoor cats, particularly fleshier Western animals and those with ginger fur, have disappeared or have returned with their skin badly cut around the joints.