Pet travel requirements - Animal Health Certificates

Are you planning on taking your dog, cat, or ferret abroad? If yes, we advise that you should research the entry requirements for the destination you are travelling to and contact Alpha Vets as soon as possible to discuss your pet’s travel needs.

Book a pet travel consultation


You can rest assured that our teams have a combined wealth of knowledge and experience dealing with pet travel. We can provide you with the necessary health checks, treatments, blood tests, and documentation for your dog, cat, or ferret to travel overseas.

Not every veterinary practice can offer this service as Vets need to hold Official Veterinarian (OV) status in order to issue Animal Health Certificates and other pet travel documentation.


Travelling to an EU country or Northern Ireland

You should begin the process of obtaining the necessary pet travel paperwork at least 4-5 weeks before you are due to leave. This is because your pet will require a rabies vaccination and a blood test (after 21 days) to prove rabies protection, before they are eligible to travel. You can research entry requirements here:

Your pet needs:

  • a health check
  • to be microchipped
  • to have a valid rabies vaccination (having waited 21 days for the results)
  • an animal health certificate (or a pet passport issued in an EU country or Northern Ireland)
  • tapeworm treatment for dogs if you’re travelling directly to Finland, Ireland, Northern Ireland, Norway or Malta, and for entry back into Great Britain (it must be given no less than 24 hours and no more than 120 hours (5 days) before you enter GB).

Please be aware:

– These requirements also apply to assistance dogs.

– You may need to produce your pet’s documents on arrival.

– Post-BREXIT, you can no longer use a pet passport issued in Great Britain (England, Wales & Scotland) for travel to an EU country or Northern Ireland. You can, however, still use a pet passport issued in an EU country or Northern Ireland.

– You can find rules for repeat trips and travelling with more than five pets on the Government’s travel advice site:


Travelling to a non-EU country / Rest of the World

We recommend that you research the requirements for exporting your pet to a destination outside of the EU well in advance of your travel dates. For some countries with strict requirements, you may need to start preparing for your pet’s trip eight months in advance.

You will need to get an export health certificate (EHC), and complete an export application form (EXA) if you are in England, Scotland or Wales. The export health certificate checks that your pet meets the health requirements of the country you are travelling to – you must nominate an officially recognised Vet who will be sent the EHC to complete during the required health check. The EHC and EXA forms for each country and pet will tell you how to apply.

Contact us to book a travel consultation


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