Travelling to the ROI or NI with your pet

A current EU pet passport issued in GB will not be valid for travel to the ROI or NI from 1 January 2021.

Before your dog, cat or ferret can travel to the EU or NI for the first time after 1 January 2021, you’ll need to take the following steps. These steps are similar to the current process for taking your pet to the EU, but you’ll need an animal health certificate (AHC) instead of a pet passport.

  1. You must have your dog, cat or ferret microchipped.

  2. Vaccinate your dog, cat or ferret against rabies – your pet must be at least 12 weeks old before it can be vaccinated.

  3. Wait 21 days after the primary vaccination before travel.

  4. Visit your vet to get an AHC for your pet, no more than 10 days before travel to the EU.

Find out more about rabies vaccination boosters and blood tests.

As long as you keep your pet’s rabies vaccinations up to date, you will not need to get repeat vaccinations for repeat trips to the EU or NI.

Getting an animal health certificate (AHC)

You must also take your pet to your vet no more than 10 days before travel to get an AHC. The AHC needs to be signed by an official vet. Check with your vet that they can issue AHCs for pets.

You must take proof of:

  • your pet’s microchipping date

  • your pet’s vaccination history

      Your pet’s AHC will be valid for:

  • 10 days after the date of issue for entry into the EU or NI

  • onward travel within the EU or NI for 4 months after the date of issue

  • re-entry to GB for 4 months after the date of issue

 

Travelling to Republic of Ireland or NI

If you’re travelling with your dog directly to Finland, Republic of Ireland, NI, Norway or Malta, it must have treatment against tapeworm (Echinococcus multilocularis). Your dog will need to receive treatment 1 to 5 days before arriving in any of these countries. Your vet must enter full details on the AHC following treatment.

Arriving in ROI or NI

On arrival in the EU or NI, pet owners travelling with pets will need to enter through a designated travellers’ point of entry (TPE).

At the TPE, you may need to present your pet’s original AHC along with proof of:

  • your pet’s microchip

  • rabies vaccination

  • tapeworm treatment (if required)

Check the rules of the country you’re travelling to for any additional restrictions or requirements before you travel. Read the travel advice: coronavirus (COVID-19) guidance before travelling overseas.

Repeat trips to the ROI or NI

Your pet will need a new AHC for each trip to the ROI or NI.

To get a new AHC, you must take your pet to an official vet no more than 10 days before you travel. You must show proof of your pet’s:

  • microchipping date

  • rabies vaccination history

If your pet has an up-to-date subsequent rabies vaccination history, it will not need a repeat rabies vaccination before travelling again.

You’ll need tapeworm treatment if you’re travelling to Republic of Ireland, NI,

Travelling to NI with your pet

The UK government recognises that pet owners and assistance dog users will need time to adjust to these changes. It’s working with the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) on an enforcement approach that takes these challenges into account. For further information read the pet travel guidance from DAERA.

This approach will be implemented in a way that supports pet owners and assistance dog users while the government seeks a permanent solution.

NI-based pets and assistance dogs returning to NI from GB can use an NI issued EU Pet Passport to re-enter NI and will not need an animal health certificate. You should contact DAERA or your vet for further information on entrance requirements for returning to NI.