EU Pet Travel Scheme
Traveling with a dog, cat or ferret is now much easier with the new EU pet passport available from any vet.
All dogs, cats and ferrets must have a passport and for identification purposes, be fitted with an electronic microchip or have a clearly readable tattoo, applied before July 2011 referenced on the passport. (Tattoos are not accepted by Ireland, Malta or the United Kingdom which only admit micro chipped animals).
All pets must be vaccinated against rabies and the details entered in their pet passport. The vaccination must be carried out after the micro chipping or tattooing.
From January 2012, specific tapeworm treatment must be given to all dogs by a vet before traveling to Finland, Ireland, Malta and the United Kingdom. Details of the treatment must appear in the pet passport and the dog can then travel from one to five days after the treatment.
The new EU-system is for cats, dogs and ferrets. For other pets, there is not yet harmonized legislation at the EU level, so national legislation applies.
For movements of pets between EU Member States, valid rabies vaccination is the only requirement for travel across borders. You should simply go to your vet, who will vaccinate your pet and enter the appropriate information in the pet passport.
The EU pet passport has been designed to last for the lifetime of the animal bearing it. When traveling, the pet owner must ensure that the rabies vaccination in the passport is valid or renew the pet’s vaccination. Some Member States might also choose to include additional information in the passport about other vaccinations and the animal’s medical history to make veterinary checks easier, but this additional information is not required by EU law.
The EU pet passport makes veterinary checks easier and makes life easier for traveling pet owners, since there is one single system that applies for all EU countries.
The pet passport is only used for pets traveling between Member States of the European Union. However, you can also use the pet passport if you are traveling to or from one of the neighboring countries where the rabies status matches that of the EU. This includes: Andorra, Croatia, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Monaco, Norway, San Marino, Switzerland and the Vatican City State.
For pets entering the EU from another country:
Either you come from a country with a favorable situation regarding rabies and animal health – (for more information on this list of countries, see here);
You come from a country that does not appear on the footnote list above, which means that rabies may be endemic among domestic pets in your country. In this case, your pet must be vaccinated and tested three months before entering all EU countries.
In both cases, you can use the health certificate found under “Document” on the following webpage. Your veterinarian must complete the health certificate either in English or in the language of the country you are traveling to. If your veterinarian does not have the health certificate, you can download it from the above website as a Word document in the language of the EU country that you are traveling to. You can travel with up to 5 pets under the Pet Travel Scheme.
Finally, an animal from a Member State that temporarily stayed in a third country will of course be able to come back on the territory of the European Union if it is accompanied by its passport, notwithstanding the fact that the animal must be in conformity with the rules that apply to entries from the country where it stayed.
- Dangerous dogs
- Dogs, Cats, Ferrets – Health Certificate (Movement of no more than 5 non-commercial pet animals) – December 2011 (pdf 103kb)
- Dogs, Cats, Ferrets – Health Certificate (Movement of commercial or more than 5 non commercial pet animals) – December 2011 (pdf 112kb)
*NEW USDA APHIS User Fee Increases Effective October 1, 2012
* Effective October 1, 2012, User Fees have increased for APHIS services, including those for the import and export of live animals, animal products and animal by-products. More information can be found at the following links: