HONOLULU: It doesn’t matter that they belong to President Barack Obama – first family dogs Bo and Sunny had to go through Hawaii’s strict quarantine procedures to travel to the islands for their holiday vacation.
Hawaii is rabies free and all incoming dogs have to jump through several hoops, including an expensive rabies blood test. Dogs that don’t meet regulations can be quarantined up to 120 days.
Program Manager Isaac Maeda of Hawaii’s Rabies Quarantine Branch said Monday that the Obamas complied with all requirements asked of other pet owners.
The only difference: Maeda says a military veterinarian inspected the dogs and their paperwork on arrival at Hickam Air Force Base early Dec. 21. Other pet owners usually go through a quarantine office at Honolulu International Airport.