Skip to content

Pet Travel Scheme

Date updated: 13/07/2021

The Pet Travel Scheme allows:

  • Dogs (Canis lupus familiaris)
  • Cats (Felis silvestris catus)
  • Ferrets (Mustela putorius furo)

to enter or re-enter the UK without serving statutory quarantine providing they meet the requirements of the scheme.

Your pet must be booked as manifest cargo on an approved airline. You may need to apply for Transfer of Residency relief (ToR1). Information is at 'Entering and staying in the UK on the website.

Entering or returning from an EU or 'listed' country

If your pet is arriving from:

The requirements for pets arriving from the EU and Listed countries and territories are:

A functional microchip

  • that meets ISO 11784/5 standards
  • implanted or read prior to their rabies vaccination
  • HARC can read other microchip standards including AVID, FECAVA and Trovan. However, it is highly recommended your pet has an ISO standard microchip.

A valid rabies vaccination administered

  • after the microchip was implanted or read
  • in accordance with the manufacturer's instructions
  • when your pet was at least 12 weeks old
  • at least 21 days prior to arrival, excluding the date of vaccination.

(DOGS only) Tapeworm treatment administered by a vet

  • that contains the active ingredient praziquantel
  • no less than 24 hours arrival before arrival
  • no more than 120 hours (five days) before arrival
  • Tapeworm treatment is not required for dogs arriving from Ireland, Finland, Malta and Norway

A valid official entry document

  • EU Pet Passport. These can only be issued by EU vets. Vets from outside the EU are not authorised to enter vaccinations in sections labelled "Authorised veterinarian" – doing so may make it invalid for entry. Tapeworm treatments may be documented by vets outside the EU.
  • GB Health Certificate. This is completed by your authorised/official vet, and then endorsed by the competent authority in the country of origin. You must include supporting documentation with this certificate, more information can be found on the Pet travel scheme common problems page. Your pet has to travel five days either side of you or the person travelling with your pet. You need to authorise the person in writing who is responsible for your pet.

Pets imported for commercial purposes and those which cannot be accompanied as above must travel under the Trade and import regime

If you are importing pets from Australia, the Malaysia Peninsula, Cyprus or Jamaica please see the information below for additional requirements.

Entering or returning from an 'unlisted' country

Unlisted countries are those with an unfavourable situation to rabies or those that have not applied to be listed. Any country that is not listed on the GOV.UK website is classified as unlisted. In addition to the requirements above, you pet will require:

A valid rabies serology test

  • Performed at an EU approved laboratory
  • The blood sample / draw was at least 30 days after the rabies vaccination (the date of vaccination is day 0)
  • Returned a titre of at lease 0.5iu
  • A waiting period of three months from the sample date must pass before entry. Your pet may re-enter the EU without the three month post-blood test wait providing they vaccinated against rabies and blood sampled whilst still in the EU. This must be documented in your pet's EU Passport by your vet.
  • The blood test remains valid for entry providing your pet has remained vaccinated against rabies without any breaks / gaps since the blood sample. We must see evidence of all subsequent vaccinations in the form of a vaccination booklet or certificates. These must all list your pet's microchip number.

What happens if there are problems with my paperwork?

This is likely to result in delays in releasing your pet and you could incur extra charges.

If there are minor issues with your paperwork we endeavour to correct these by liaising with the relevant vet. Unfortunately in some circumstances your pet will have to serve quarantine.

Ensure you read the Pet Travel Scheme common problems page and the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs taking pets abroad for more guidance before shipping your pet.

Cats from Australia must be accompanied with a certificate from the Australian veterinary authorities confirming that they have not been on a holding where Hendra virus has been confirmed during the 60 days before export.

Health certification must be provided by the Malaysian veterinary authorities which confirms that the cat or dog:

  • Has had no contact with pigs during at least the 60 days before export.
  • Has not been resident on holdings where during the past 60 days any case of Nipah disease has been confirmed.
  • Has had anIgC capture ELISA test with a negative result. This must be carried out in a laboratory approved for testing for antibody against the Nipah disease viruses by the competent veterinary authorities on a sample of blood taken within ten days of export.

Although Jamaica is a qualifying country under the EU regulation, Jamaican law precludes the country from involvement in the Pet Travel Scheme. Animals prepared for the Scheme may not enter Jamaica and animals may not be prepared for the Pet Travel Scheme in Jamaica.

Dogs, cats and ferrets from the republic of Cyprus, may enter or re-enter the UK without a blood test. However, animals travelling from north Cyprus, the area north of the Buffer Zone, must be blood sampled at least 30 days after vaccination against rabies and wait three months before travelling to the UK.