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What does Brexit mean for pet travel?

What does Brexit mean for pet travel?

Changes to the requirements for pet travel between the UK and EU countries came into force on 1 January 2021, but what does Brexit mean for pet travel? We tell you all you need to know.

Travelling post-Brexit

The changes Brexit has made to travelling into the EU or Northern Ireland, at a glance, is that instead of a pet passport if you’re a pet owner within England, Scotland, or Wales and you’re travelling to the EU or Northern Ireland, you must now provide an Animal Health Certificate (AHC). The old-style Pet Passport is no longer valid for travel.

Changes to the PETS travel scheme

Before taking their dog, cat or ferret to the EU for the first time after 1 January 2021, pet owners must complete the following steps. The only new requirement for travel to the EU is the use of a certificate, rather than a pet passport:
• Ensure their dog, cat or ferret is microchipped.
• Ensure that their dog, cat or ferret is vaccinated against rabies – pets must be at least 12 weeks old before they can be vaccinated.
• Wait 21 days after the primary vaccination before travel
• Dogs must be treated against tapeworm 24-120 hours before landing, if they are travelling to a tapeworm free country.
• Visit their vet to get an animal health certificate (AHC) for their pet, no more than 10 days before travel to the EU.

Changes to the PETS travel scheme

Before taking their dog, cat or ferret to the EU for the first time after 1 January 2021, pet owners must complete the following steps. The only new requirement for travel to the EU is the use of a certificate, rather than a pet passport:
• Ensure their dog, cat or ferret is microchipped.
• Ensure that their dog, cat or ferret is vaccinated against rabies – pets must be at least 12 weeks old before they can be vaccinated.
• Wait 21 days after the primary vaccination before travel
• Dogs must be treated against tapeworm 24-120 hours before landing, if they are travelling to a tapeworm free country.
• Visit their vet to get an animal health certificate (AHC) for their pet, no more than 10 days before travel to the EU.

What is an Animal Health Certificate?

  • An Animal Health Certificate confirms that your pet has been microchipped and vaccinated against Rabies.
  • It must be signed and issued by a vet no more than 10 days before you travel.
  • It is valid for 10 days after the issue date for entry into the EU and Northern Ireland, and for four months for re-entry into Great Britain.
  • You’ll need to obtain a new certificate each time you want to re-enter the EU and Northern Ireland.
  • If you’re travelling to either the Republic of Ireland, Northern Ireland, Finland, Malta, or Norway with a dog, you will also need to have your dog treated for tapeworm between one and five days before your arrival.
  • When you arrive in the EU and Northern Ireland, you’ll need to pass through a Traveller’s Point of Entry (TPE). This will be clearly signposted at all major airports, ports, and Eurotunnel terminals.
  • It allows for travel of up to five pets. If you plan to travel with more than five pets you will need to obtain written proof to say that you’re attending a sports event or competition and that your pets are more than six months old.

Entering the UK from the EU or Northern Ireland

The Government has stated that there will be no change to the requirements for animals entering Great Britain from the EU and Northern Ireland. This means that you will need your pet passport.
If you are travelling from Northern Ireland into the UK then you won’t need a pet passport or AHC (as we’re in the same Customs Union) but you will need one to return.

Entering the UK from the EU or Northern Ireland

The Government has stated that there will be no change to the requirements for animals entering Great Britain from the EU and Northern Ireland. This means that you will need your pet passport.
If you are travelling from Northern Ireland into the UK then you won’t need a pet passport or AHC (as we’re in the same Customs Union) but you will need one to return.

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