It is now easier than ever for your pet to travel between countries It is now easier than ever for your pet to travel between countries

Know Before You Go: Travel to or within Europe

With new members of the European Union (EU) being added recently, it is easier than ever for your pet to travel between countries. While the process has been greatly stream-lined, each individual country may have their own separate requirements.  Here is a basic list of things you must think of when planning a holiday with your pet in Europe.

1. Pet Passport

The pet passport is issued by your veterinarian in your home country. The European Commission does not issue the pet passport. Pet passports are available for dogs, cats and ferrets. This document needs to accompany your pet wherever you go. Health checks, your pet’s vaccination and parasite treatment history are recorded here along with your pet’s microchip number. If your pet has an identifying tattoo, it also should be recorded here as well.

In non-EU countries where the Rabies status matches the neighboring EU member states, pet passports are accepted for travel. These countries include: Andorra, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Monaco, Norway, San Marino, Switzerland and the Vatican City State.

If you are travelling to the European Union from a third country, such as the United States, an EU entry health certificate and USDA health certificate must be issued and signed by proper authorities before entrance into the EU. 

2. Rabies vaccination

For movement between EU member states and many third countries, your pet must be current on their Rabies vaccination. While most EU countries require yearly Rabies vaccination by law, 3-year vaccines may be acceptable.

3. Special Requirements

Each country can set separate requirements for entry. For example, Finland, the United Kingdom, Ireland and Malta require treatment for the parasite Echinococcus before entry. One must note that this treatment must be done within a specific time frame before entry. 

Since January 2012, the European Commission reports: “the treatment shall be administered by a veterinarian within a period of not more than 120 hours and not less than 24 hours before the time of scheduled entry into Finland, Ireland, Malta or the United Kingdom; the treatment shall be certified by the administering veterinarian in the relevant section of the health certificate or the passport on re-entry.” 

Non-EU countries, such as Norway, also require treatment for Echinococcus before entry.

Helpful Resources from the European Commission Website

Pet Passports FAQs
Movement of Pets within the EU
List of Third Countries
Non-Commercial Pet Movement from Third Countries into the EU
Pre-Entry Rabies Titration Test for Pet Movement from Certain Third Countries

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