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Traveling With Your Pets? Some Helpful Tips

Many of our members ask if they can take their pet on home exchange vacations too.  This is ultimately up to the hosting owner of the property, today around 50% of the owners do allow pets to visit.  To find out if the property you are considering visiting allows pets, click on the House Rules button below the main picture, this will let you know what the owner has stated.  Always a good ideas to directly ask the owner, which can be done via the IVHE communication.    This guest blog is courtesy Sara @ WorldWide Lawyers , Thank you.  

Want to take your pets on Vacation? Here’s how.

More and more of us are taking our pets on vacation! If you are thinking of taking your four-legged friend with you on your upcoming trip, we have provided below some information below that may help.

There are various rules surrounding the movement of pets. The rules that apply to you and your pet will vary depending on your destination country. To help make sure everything goes smoothly, will need to understand the requirements relevant to you and your furry friend before you finalise your plans!
The regulations discussed below apply to dogs, cats (and ferrets!). For other pets you should check the applicable national rules.

Travelling within the EU (or into the EU from another listed country*)

Under the EU pet travel scheme you can freely travel within the EU with your cat, dog or ferret if it has a European Pet Passport.
European Pet Passport demonstrates that your pet has been:
  • micro-chipped
  • vaccinated against rabies
  • treated by a vet against tapeworm (this one applies to dogs only)
Top Tip: Make sure that your pet receives the rabies vaccination at least 21 days before you plan to travel and that the vaccination is received after your pet has been micro-chipped – otherwise the vaccination will not count for the passport purposes!
A pet passport must be issued by an Official Veterinarian (OV). Your vet should be able to advise you how to contact the nearest OV if there is not one at their practice.
Minor changes were introduced the EU pet travel scheme on 29 December 2014. The main changes are that a new style pet passport will be introduced (although the old style ones will remain valid for the life of the pet) and the introduction of pet passport checks when entering EU countries.

Traveling into (or returning to) the EU from a non listed country**

If you are bringing your cat, dog or ferret to the UK or other EU country from a non listed country, they will need to have been:
  • issued with an official third country Veterinary Certificate
  • micro-chipped
  • vaccinated against rabies
  • treated by a vet against tapeworm  (this one applies to dogs only)
In addition to this your pet should have a blood test to show that the rabies vaccination was successful. The vet must take the blood sample at least 30 days after the rabies vaccination was given. Your vet should give you a copy of the blood test.
You will have to wait until at least 3 months from the date the blood sample was taken before your pet can travel unless your pet was vaccinated, blood tested and given a EU pet passport before travelling to the non-listed country,
If however a pet fails to meet entry requirements when it arrives in the EU country, the pet will usually be placed in quarantine at the owner’s expense until disease-control requirements have been met.
Travelling into a Non-EU country

Depending on you destination country there may be additional requirements to bring your pet into the country such as import permits, health certificates, additional vaccinations and blood tests. The destination country may also impose quarantine or other rules depending where you are traveling from.

Transporting your pet

Your pet must travel in a container that complies with the International Air Transport Association (IATA) regulations. 

Certain other conditions will also need to be met before your pet is able to travel, for example they must travel via an approved air, sea or rail route with an approved carrier.

To ensure that you are not parted from your beloved four-legged friend for longer than necessary you should ensure you understand what is required by your destination country and the relevant timescales involved well in advance of your trip.

* Click here for the list of EU listed and Non-EU listed countries
** a non-listed country is a country which has not been included in the list of EU or listed countries because of their higher rate of disease instances or less vigorous veterinary systems.


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