Beech House Vets | Pet Travel to Europe after Brexit
Wondering how Brexit will affect travel to and from the EU with your pet? The government has put together a useful list of information for all eventualities. Click to read more.
Pet, travel, Brexit, Europe
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Pet travel to Europe after Brexit

To make sure your pet is able to travel from the UK to the EU after January 2021 in any scenario, you should contact your vet at least 4 months before travelling to get the latest advice.


Rules for pet travel


The UK now leaves the EU and is treated as an unlisted country.

You must get your dog, cat or ferret microchipped and then vaccinated against rabies before it can travel.

To make sure your pet can travel after January 2021:

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  1. You must get your dog, cat or ferret microchipped and then vaccinated against rabies before it can travel. Your pet must have a blood sample taken at least 30 days after the rabies vaccination.
  2. We will send the blood sample to an EU-approved blood testing laboratory.
  3. The results of the blood test must show that the vaccination was successful (Your pet must have a rabies antibody level of at least 0.5 IU/ml).
  4. You must wait 3 months from the date the successful blood sample was taken before you travel.
  5. You must take your pet to one of our vets, who is an Official Veterinarian (OV), no more than 10 days before travel to get a health certificate.  Charles Castle is an approved OV.


Pet passports issued in the UK are no longer valid for travel to the EU. 

You should contact your vet at least 4 months before you plan on travelling to any EU country.

A successful blood test is only required for first time travel to an EU country. This is provided that your pet’s rabies vaccinations are kept up to date with boosters before the expiry date of the previous vaccination.


Your pet health certificate would be valid for:

  • 10 days after the date of issue for entry into the EU
  • 4 months of onward travel within the EU
  • re-entry to the UK for 4 months after the date of issue


On arrival in the EU, pet owners travelling with their pets would be required to enter through a designated Travellers’ Point of Entry (TPE). At the TPE, the pet owner may be asked to present proof of microchip, rabies vaccination and the blood test result alongside their pet’s health certificate.


Repeat trips to the EU


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Pets that have previously had a blood test and have an up-to-date rabies vaccination do not need to repeat the blood test. Your pet will need a health certificate for each trip to the EU.


To get a new health certificate you must take your pet to an OV no more than 10 days before you travel. You must take proof of:

  • your pet’s vaccination history
  • a successful rabies antibody blood test result



Return to the UK


Your pet must have one of the following documents when returning to the UK:

  • an existing EU pet passport (UK one would only be used as a reference document)
  • the EU health certificate issued in the UK used to travel to the EU
  • a UK pet health certificate (issued outside the UK for travel into the UK only)
  • Proof of worming treatment 5 days prior to your return.

Check the routes before you travel. On existing approved routes your documents and microchip will be checked. If you’re not travelling on an approved route talk to your vet about what preparations you need to make before travel.

Travel from countries that are not free from tapeworm (Echinococcus multilocularis)

You’ll need to take your dog to a vet between one and five days before returning to the UK for an approved tapeworm treatment.

You do not need to treat your dog for tapeworm if you’re coming directly to the UK from Finland, Ireland, Malta or Norway.


UK nationals living abroad


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If you’re living in Europe and are planning to travel with your pet, you should speak to your local vet. They’ll be able to help you understand the impact of Brexit and ensure you’re compliant with EU Pet Travel Regulations.

If you have a pet passport issued by an EU member state, you can use it to bring your pet to the UK.

To return your pet to an EU country from the UK, you’ll need to ensure it has a successful rabies antibody blood test.

If your pet has a successful blood test before leaving the EU you will not need to wait the 3 months before travelling.


Guidance on the new rules


For information on the Pet Travel Scheme in Northern Ireland, read the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) pet travel.

All of the information found in this article was taken directly from the website and can be found here.