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UPDATE – Sept 30, 2021

Travelling to an EU country or Northern Ireland with your dog, cat or ferret

You can no longer use a pet passport issued in GB. You can still use a Pet passport if it was issued in an EU country or Northern Ireland.

Your pet will need

  • A microchip
  • A rabies vaccination: EU Regulation requires pets to be at least 12 weeks old when vaccinated. You have to wait 3 weeks or more after the rabies vaccination before you can travel. This means no pet can travel abroad unless they are a minimum of 15 weeks old (12 weeks and the 21-day wait).
  • An animal health certificate (AHC) – issued by an “official veterinarian – OV” no more than 10days before you travel. The vet will need to check your pet, the microchip & see proof of your pet’s Rabies vaccination
  • Tapeworm treatment (Whether the tapeworm treatment is done by your own vet or a vet on the continent will depend on your destination)

Your pet’s animal health certificate will be valid after the date of issue for 10 days for entry into the EU or Northern Ireland, 4 months for onward travel within the EU & 4 months for re-entry to Great Britain

Your pet will need a new animal health certificate for each trip to an EU country or Northern Ireland from Great Britain


How many pets can travel?

Up to five pets per trip, if you are intending to travel with more than five pets please check the UK government website.

Can I use my UK issued pet passport?

No. Your UK pet passport does not allow entry into another country, only into the UK. You need an Animal Health Certificate to enter another EU country or Northern Ireland. However we recommend you keep it & always travel with it – it contains useful information!

My pet is from an EU country, is their pet passport issued in an EU country or Northern Ireland still valid?

Yes – If your pets Rabies boosters are carried out in an EU country or Northern Ireland. However vets in GB cannot complete your pets current passport

How long is my pet’s AHC valid for after the date of issue?

  • 10 days for entry into an EU country and Northern Ireland
  • 4 months for onward travel within the EU
  • 4 months for re-entry to Great Britain

What if I will be away for longer than 4 months?

Your pet’s AHC only lasts 4 months. After this period your AHC will expire & you need a passport to be issued in the EU country or Northern Ireland.

Does my pet need a rabies blood test?

Currently there are no requirements for Rabies bloods but different countries vary & can change their policies – Please check your countries specific requirements

If you are taking your pet further afield and need to export them outside of the EU then an Export Health Certificate (EHC) is required. This is a complicated and lengthy process and the easiest solution is to use a pet travel company that can arrange everything for you. They are informed with the most up to date information for the country that you are travelling to, as procedures and advice can differ from country to country. Some information can also be found on the government website.

What you need prior to your appointment

When you book your appointment we will ask you to fill out a form with the information we need.

Please let us know where you will initially land on entry to the EU – this may be different to your final destination but the paperwork needs to be in the language of the EU country which you first enter. Eg. If you are travelling to Poland but landing in France the documents will need to be in French as that is the country where you are entering the EU

We will need a copy of the rabies vaccinations (either a vaccination certificate or your pet’s old passport) – we will have to copy it to accompany the AHC.

Any paperwork regarding microchipping – this is not essential, but makes completing the form easier!

Remember It must be the owner, or the person who has written permission from the owner to travel with their pet, who accompanies the pet to the appointment to sign the AHC.

Contact the Pet Travel Scheme helpline if you need more information about pet travel.

Pet Travel Scheme helpline
Telephone: 0370 241 1710

More information can be found at here:

As negotiations are still in progress this advice may be subject to change and we advise that you consult the government website before travelling.

Please contact the surgery if, having consulted the government website, you have any further questions about taking your pet abroad.



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We all love our pets and, for 18 years, Friars Moor Veterinary Practice in Sturminster Newton has been giving me the confidence that I was doing the very best I could for mine.
Angela Faulkner