Quarantine regulations

Before you may enter the UK with your dog, you will need to comply with strict regulations laid down by the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (DEFRA). An outline of these regulations is given below, although the Kennel Club advises that you check the DEFRA website for further information. Please note that the regulations have changed from 1 January 2012 and are now much easier to comply with.

What you need to do before entering the UK from the EU:

  • Step 1 - Your dog must be microchipped with an ISO approved microchip.
  • Step 2 - After the dog has been microchipped, it must be vaccinated with an inactivated rabies vaccine.┬áThere is no exemption to this requirement, even if your pet has a current rabies vaccination. Rabies boosters must be kept up to date. The length of the waiting period before entry to the UK is 21 days after the first vaccination date.
  • Step 3 - Get pet travel documentation - For animals being prepared in an EU country, you should get an EU pet passport. If you are preparing your animal in a non-EU listed country or territory you will need to obtain an official third country veterinary certificate (apart from Croatia, Gibraltar, Norway, San Marino and Switzerland who also issue pet passports).
  • Step 4 - Tapeworm treatment -┬áBefore entering the UK, all dogs must be treated for tapeworm. The treatment must be administered by a vet not less than 24 hours and not more than 120 hours (1-5 days) before its scheduled arrival time in the UK. There is no mandatory requirement for tick treatment. No treatment is required for dogs entering the UK from Finland, Ireland or Malta.
  • Step 5 - Arrange for your animal to travel with an approved transport company on an authorised route - Your pet must enter the UK from a listed country or territory travelling with an approved transport company on an authorised route. The routes allowing entry into the UK are varied, and not all airlines and ports are currently part of the Pet Travel Scheme.
  • Please note that from 26 May 2010 you may only transport a maximum of five dogs at a time into or out of the UK

More Questions?

IMPORTANT The arrangements described above are only valid if you are coming from an EU country or an approved country outside the EU. Please check the DEFRA website carefully if you are coming from any country outside the EU.
If you have further questions about the quarantine rules, the Pet Passport Scheme or the UK Pets Travel Scheme (PETS) please contact the DEFRA PETS helpline.


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