Obtaining a Pet Passport – the Pet Travel Scheme

For many years now, since the introduction of the Pet Travel Scheme, travelling abroad with your pet has been relatively simple.

Most people’s travel wishes involve simply taking their cat or dog abroad to an EU country, either for a holiday, or perhaps to stay for a longer period.

If this is your intention then here’s some advice to make the planning easier;

  • Your pet will need to be microchipped and vaccinated against rabies. The vaccination is a single injection that will last for three years and has no known side-effects.  We can do this and issue you with the Pet Passport at the same time.  After three years we will post you a reminder when the rabies booster vaccination falls due.
  • This can all be carried out at a single appointment at any of our surgeries.
  • Please note that you are unable to use your new Pet Passport for a period of 21 days after it has been issued. Therefore we advise that you obtain the Pet Passport in good time, say two months, before your planned travel date.
  • You will need to travel out of and re-enter the UK via designated ports so that the necessary inspections can be carried out – you are not permitted to sail into the Hamble one evening with your dog or cat on board!
  • Between 1 and 5 days (24 to 120 hours) of re-entering the UK you will need to find an EU vet to administer tapeworm treatment to your pet and stamp the Pet Passport to prove that this has been carried out. This procedure is necessary since there is a particular tapeworm in Europe that does not exist in the UK, which can be carried by dogs and cats and has the potential to cause serious disease in people.  If you are travelling for a short break, that is, you will be returning to the UK with 5 days of leaving then we can administer the tapeworm treatment and stamp the Pet Passport ourselves so save you the need of finding a vet while on a short break abroad.
  • Please note that pets travelling to and from the Republic of Ireland require Pet Passports.
  • If, after three years you miss your pet’s rabies booster due date we can still give the booster on the same Pet Passport but the 21 day travel restriction applies here whereas it would not apply if the booster was administered prior to the due date.
  • If a Pet Passport needs replacing due to damage, loss or if it is full then we can replace it, although we will need to see you with your pet so that the microchip number can be checked. If you think that your Pet Passport has been stolen then you will need to contact the relevant authorities.
  • Although we rarely issue them, please note that your ferret requires a Pet Passport if it travels abroad.

If you have further questions regarding the Pet Travel Scheme, please either call the surgery or go to;

www.gov.uk/take-pet-abroad where further advice can be obtained.

If you are planning to take your pet further afield, to the USA, for example, then although a Pet Passport is often issued there are still numerous other requirements that need to be fulfilled so please make the necessary enquiries in good time before you travel.

Bon voyage!

JH July 2018