• Preparing your pet for travel

 

Pet Passports UK

Cat and Dog Passports

Travelling with your pet can be a wonderful experience. Working in a similar way to our own passports, a Pet Passport allows registered dogs, cats and ferrets to travel abroad.

We understand that organising travel with pets can seem overwhelming at first, which is why we’ve put together this short guide to help answer some of the most common questions.

 

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Where can my pet travel with a passport?

A Pet Passport will give your pet freedom to travel through the EU and selected non-EU countries.

There are some countries outside the EU that are slightly more complicated and your pet may be subject to further regulatory procedures to allow them to travel. Be sure to check all the requirements for the country you are travelling to ahead of time.

Find a full list of countries where your pet can and cannot travel singularly with a pet passport here.

What do I need to do for my pet to be eligible for a Pet Passport? 

  • Your pet must be microchipped.
  • Your pet must have been vaccinated against rabies. Here are some helpful tips around vaccinating against rabies for your pet:
    • Your pet must be at least 12 weeks old.
    • If it’s their first vaccine, you will have to wait 21 days to travel. This means that your pet must be at least 15 weeks old (12 weeks old at vaccination + 3 weeks wait) to re-enter the UK.
    • If you miss a booster, you will have to re-vaccinate and wait 3 weeks before travelling.
  • If it is a dog, it must have received tapeworm treatment:
    • At least 24 hours and no greater than 5 days before re-entering the UK.
    • If you’ll only be gone a few days, this can be done by your normal vet before you leave the UK.
    • This treatment should be repeated 28 days later.

Where can I get a Pet Passport?

Pet passports are issued through the Pet Travel Scheme (PETS).

To be able to issue Pet Passports, vets require special training. Many of our vets are Official Vets (OVs) which means they will be able to issue your pet with a passport.

Click here to find your local practice to see if they can issue Pet Passports.

There is some paperwork you will need to bring to your Pet Passport appointment (if you are already a client of ours, we will have all the required details on our computer system).

Please give your local practice a call to find out what you should bring with you.

Is there an expiry date on my Pet Passport?

Pet Passports are valid for life as long as you keep up to date with your pet’s rabies vaccination.

Typically, a rabies booster vaccination is required every 2-3 years but will depend on the specific vaccine used.

What if my pet is sick on the day? Can they still travel?

If your pet is sick on the day you are due to travel, the chances are that it will not be able to travel as planned. Outside of putting your pet in further discomfort and danger, your travel company, as well as border control, may not permit entry of a sick animal.

Do I need to do anything before I bring my pet back into the UK?

  • Cats and ferrets: You do not need to do anything differently while you are away to bring your pet back into the UK with you.
  • Dogs: If you’re away for longer than 5 days, you will need to get a tapeworm treatment administered to them while you are on your trip.

What else should I know before I travel with my pet?

  • There are only certain routes and companies that are approved for bringing pets into the UK, so do your research and make sure your route is valid.
  • Check your travel company accepts pets as not all travel companies do, or require certain cages etc. Double check the required travel arrangements specific to your train, ship or airline company.
  • If you fail to meet the regulations, you may have to leave your pet at home, or when coming back into the UK, your pet may be quarantined for up to four months.
  • You can’t bring more than 5 pets to the UK unless you’re attending or training for a competition, show or sporting event. Written evidence of registration for the event is required when you travel.
  • You must travel with your pet’s original documents, not copies.

A final checklist before travelling with your Pet Passport

Check that the vet has filled in the following sections in the pet passport:

Details of ownership 

A description of the animal 

Any markings or identifying factors of the animal 

Vaccination against rabies

Rabies blood test (if needed)

Details of the vet issuing the passport

Your dog’s tapeworm treatment (if needed)

To make an enquiry click here or find your local practice