Relocating to florida with cats.

Are you thinking about moving to Florida with your furry felines?

You’re in luck because Florida is a great place to own a cat.

We’ve helped countless families make the big move to Florida, and we are often asked questions about moving their pets.

This is a helpful guide to help you make the move with your cat(s).

Let’s dive in and make sure you’ve checked all the boxes for your big move.

General Florida Cat Laws

What do I need to know before moving my cat to Florida (short answer)?

Before moving to Florida, it is essential to obtain a veterinary inspection certificate.

Your certificate must be issued within the last 30 days and at least 14 days prior to the current date.

At minimum, your cat requires a rabies vaccine and may require additional treatments as determined by your veterinary.

In addition, your cat needs to be older than 8 weeks and if you are traveling with a lot of cats, check with local ordinances to determine if you need a special permit to own more than four cats.

Do I need a veterinary inspection for my cat?

Before moving, ensure your cat has an official certificate of veterinary inspection issued no more than 30 days and no less than 14 days before entry into Florida.

You will also need to ask you veterinary about potential vaccines your cats need.

In Florida, a rabies vaccine is the only required vaccination.

What other tests or treatments might I need?

  • Panleukopenia
  • Feline Viral Rhinotracheitis
  • Calici Virus
  • Hookworms
  • Roundworms.

How do I sell my cat in Florida?

Upon arriving in Florida, you may find yourself contemplating parting with your cats. We understand that certain condos or rental communities have restrictions against pets.

If selling a cat, you will need a current official certificate of veterinary inspection. Your certificate should list all vaccines, and it should demonstrate that your cat is free from contagious diseases and parasites.

Here is a quick link for your Florida cat inspection certificate.

This ensures the animal’s health at the time of sale and complies with state requirements.

Rules of buying a cat in Florida

Just like a selling a cat, when purchasing a cat, the seller must provide you with an official certificate of veterinary inspection, which includes a comprehensive health record.

If you suspect the cat is unwell—maybe from illness or disease—you need to visit a veterinary within 14 days, and you have the right to a refund, exchange, or reimbursement.

If the selling party is giving you issues regarding the pet refund, remind them of the Florida Consumer Protection right you have. Check here for more details.

An orange cat in motion featured on an advisory about purchasing cats in florida, with tips on ensuring health and refund options.
Buying a Cat in Florida

Can I move my kitten to Florida?

It depends. It’s illegal to move a kitten into Florida before the age of 8 weeks.

After 8 weeks, you can feel free to move your kitten(s) to Florida. Just make sure to get their health inspection.

See above for timeline details.

Do I need a permit for my cat in Florida?

No, you can own Class III animals without a permit. Cats fall into the category of a Class III animal.

Furthermore, if you own other Class III animals, including dogs, birds, certain reptiles, rabbits, squirrels, and ferrets, you are not required to obtain a permit.

Do I need a license to own a cat in Florida?

While there is no state-wide regulation for pet licensing for cats, individual counties/cities may require a license.

For example, Pinellas Country requires registration with the county and a license for your cat.

Are cats considered personal property?

In Florida, pets are considered personal property according to the law.

Why is this important? Well, this means that if there’s a legal issue involving pets, like if they are hurt or pass away, or maybe they hurt someone else, the case is handled under property law.

Because of this classification, the way compensation and responsibility are figured out in these situations is unique.

Animal cruelty is a different ballgame all together. If you are found guilty (first-degree misdemeanor) of animal cruelty, you can spend up to 365 days in jail and incur a $5,000 fine.

Are cats allowed outside in Florida (feral cats)?

In short, yes, you can have outdoor cats. You should know that the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission does not condone having outdoor cats nor recommend it.

The reason being is that cats can hunt and disturb species in natural habits and disrupt environments.

Will someone enter your property to remove your cat? No.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) won’t initiate campaigns against outdoor cats or penalize homeowners for their outdoor pets.

The FWC’s job is to protect endangered species without patrolling for feral and free-ranging cats.

How many cats can I own in Florida?

There isn’t a state limit on how many cats you can own, but it’s important to check with your local city ordinances.

For example, in Jacksonville, you can only own 40 cats before an inspection is warranted of their health and living conditions.

In cities like Orlando, the restrictions are a bit more stringent. You can only own four cats in Orange County before you need a special permit.


We get it, moving to Florida with pets can be a daunting task, but Florida has made it pretty simple to get your cat here without much fuss.

After you take care of your vet inspection, you and your cat are ready for the Florida good life.

If you have further questions, check out the terrific guide from the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services on pet ownership here.