The Ultimate Guide for Traveling to Europe With Pets

April 13, 2022


For many people leaving their pets behind is not an option, and traveling abroad with them has increased in popularity in the last couple of years. However, you can’t just take your furry companion and start traveling the world.

A lot of countries have regulations regarding animals entering their territory. If you are traveling across the seas, the EU has rules set to determine conditions pet owners need to fulfill.

The following article will explain which rules apply to your case and all the necessary information you should be aware of.

What pets can you take to Europe?

Only fetters, cats, and dogs classify for this journey and can accompany you when you are traveling to European Union countries. However, your trip needs to be non-commercial.

How many pets can you bring?

On a non-commercial trip, you can bring up to five animals. However, you are allowed to bring more if you participate in sporting events, exhibitions, or competitions. For this, you will need to have written evidence that your furry companions are registered to attend mentioned events or are in some way linked to the events.

Your pets need to be at least six-month-old, to be eligible to participate.

EU travel categories

Before booking your flight to the EU, you should know that your residence will determine further actions. In fact, you need to fulfill a whole list of travel requirements based on where you live.

EU grouped countries into three categories: Part 1, Part 2, and Unlisted countries.

If you want to become eligible for the first two groups, you need to go to a relevant EU body and apply for the status. Countries that weren’t accepted or didn’t apply go directly to the third group.

Part 1 listed countries

These work under the same regulations, and only several countries are part of this group, including:

Vatican City State, San Marino, Norway, Monaco, Liechtenstein, Iceland, Greenland, Gibraltar, Faroe Islands, Switzerland, and Andorra.

Part 2 listed countries

Most of the countries fall into this group, with more than 50, so check out their website to see whether your country is part of the list.

Unlisted countries

If your residence isn’t listed in Part 1 and Part 2, then it’s part of the third group or unlisted countries. In that case, you have to prepare several months in advance before traveling to Europe.

Conditions for entering the EU with a pet

When visiting EU countries with a pet, you must meet a couple of conditions before your trip. The requirements include:

Pet passport

This document is necessary for every animal entering the EU. An official vet will issue you a passport once they determine the identity and physical condition of the animal.


Ferrets, cats, and dogs traveling to EU countries will be marked by a readable tattoo or implantation. For some pets, especially dogs, this could be a stressful experience; therefore, giving them dog probiotics will calm their tummies and reinforce their health for further testing.


Your pet needs to be vaccinated before the trip; this includes rabies vaccination. Animals need to be 12 weeks old when they receive this shot. The vaccine is valid for 21 days.

Rabies antibody test

This test is necessary for all animals entering Europe. A vet will do the testing at least 30 days after your pet has been vaccinated against rabies. After your pet completes a blood sample, you have to wait three months from this date before you can book your trip.

An antibody test needs to be done in an authorized lab, and it measures the level of neutralizing antibodies to the rabies virus.

Tapeworm treatment

This requirement applies only to dogs. Initiate treatment 24 to 120 hours before entering Malta, the Republic of Ireland, and Finland. Tapeworm treatment needs to be done at the vet’s office and they have to verify this procedure in the passport.

Health certificate

One of the things you need to get before going to Europe is a pet health certificate. In most cases, an official vet issues this certificate, which has to include the following info:

  • Transponder code or a tattoo
  • Rabies vaccination details
  • Blood sample details
  • Tapeworm treatment details

Keep in mind that certificate has a time limit of ten days. Therefore, you need to enter your destination country within this time limit. For every trip to the EU, you need to get a new certificate.

Entering the UK

An EU passport isn’t valid in the UK; therefore, you will need to visit an authorized vet in the UK and follow the instructions.


Now that you know the possible regulation you might face when traveling to Europe, you can start preparing on time. This is a great way to spend a lovely vacation with your pet and enjoy all the things Europe has to offer.


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