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Guidelines for EU Pet Passport in 2023

A Quick Guide

Are you planning a trip to the European Union with your pet? Although navigating the EU Pet Passport application procedure may appear complicated, it is not!

If you're headed to the European Union with your furry friend, proper paperwork matters. The EU Pet Passport guarantees your pet meets all EU travel requirements. Dive into our 2023 guide to learn how to apply for EU Pet Passport and make your pet's travel a breeze.

Your Pet's Ticket to European Adventures: The EU Pet Passport Explained

An EU pet passport is an important document for pet travel that adheres to rules set by the EU and is required for travel throughout the EU. It includes a description of your pet, information about them, the microchip, proof of rabies vaccination, and the contact details of the veterinarian who issued the passport and the pet owner. You can get a European pet passport from any authorised veterinarian. The European pet passport has validity for life.

Having an EU pet passport means your pet can explore the EU hassle-free, with no quarantine needed. This particular document certifies your pet's fitness for travel. The documents needed for travel vary based on your departure and destination countries, each with unique rules for importing and exporting pets. We have covered these specific criteria below.

Key Prerequisites for Obtaining an EU Pet Passport in 2023

Pet Travel Within the EU

There are a few conditions to be met to obtain your pet passport when you are travelling within the EU:


Make sure that your pet has a microchip, as it is the first step in acquiring an EU pet passport. Your pet's skin is easily and swiftly chipped with a tiny microchip. A certified practitioner should place the microchip and adhere to ISO criteria. The specific identifying number connected to the microchip will help identify your pet uniquely.

Rabies Vaccination

For travel within the EU, rabies vaccination is a must. Make sure that your pet has received the rabies vaccination at least 21 days before travelling. Consult your veterinarian before travelling. Extra vaccines may be needed depending on where you're going in the EU.

Treatment for Tapeworm

Dogs require a tapeworm treatment if you are going to the UK, Ireland, Finland, Norway, or Malta. Before travelling to these nations, your dog must have a tapeworm treatment between 24 and 120 hours. Your dog might be quarantined for up to 4 months if you don't get the necessary treatment within this time frame. A veterinarian must provide the treatment, and it must be documented in your pet's passport.

Application for a Pet Passport

To get an EU pet passport application form, get in touch with your veterinarian or an authorised animal health authority in your nation. Fill out the form completely and correctly, making sure to include all relevant facts, including your contact information, your pet's identifying information and vaccination records.

To prevent any errors or mistakes that can cause the procedure to take longer, review the application form carefully. Upon approval of your pet passport application, you will receive an EU pet passport.

Pet Travel from the UK to EU

AHC (Animal Health Certificate)

In place of the EU Pet Passport, the UK Animal Health Certificate has emerged as the primary requisite for individuals intending to travel with their pets between the UK and EU member states. This health certificate has replaced the previous pet passport, which consisted of 12 pages. AHC serves as a single-use document, permitting entry of up to 5 pets into the EU and Northern Ireland, and exclusively applies to dogs, cats, and ferrets.

The shift from EU Pet Passports to the UK Animal Health Certificate marks a fundamental adjustment for UK residents travelling with their pets within the EU. The AHC must be received ten days before departure and attested by an authorised veterinarian. Every time you depart from the UK and enter an EU nation or Northern Ireland, your pet must have a fresh animal health certificate.

The Animal Health Certificate has a relatively brief validity period of just five months from the date of issuance. Consequently, pet owners must strategically plan their travel arrangements to ensure they fall within this timeframe. The AHC certificate adheres to standardised guidelines, fostering consistency and uniformity in terms of pet travel health requirements.

To get AHC, your pet needs to be at least 12 weeks old, rabies vaccinated and microchipped. A veterinarian, known as an "Official Veterinarian" (OV), will examine your pet and sign the certificate. You'll also need to show proof of your pet's microchip date and vaccination history.

Once you receive the Animal Health Certificate :

  • You have ten days to enter the EU or Northern Ireland.

  • It will be valid for four months for travelling within the EU.

  • You must return to the UK within those four months before the certificate expires.

To get an estimate, please complete our free quote form detailing personal, travel, and pet details.

Pet Travel from the EU to the UK

When bringing your pet back from the EU to the UK, you need an Animal health certificate (AHC) issued in the UK that was used for travelling to the EU( valid for 4 months) or a UK animal health certificate from the EU country for travel into the UK.

For dogs, they should have a treatment for tapeworms 24 to 120 hours before entering the UK.

However, if you're coming to the UK from Northern Ireland or the Republic of Ireland, your pet doesn't need these documents or the tapeworm treatment.

You can bring up to five pets with a health certificate. If you have more than five pets, you need to show proof that they're in a competition, exhibition, or sports event. Otherwise, you need to follow special rules for bringing in more pets, similar to importing animals for business purposes.

Pro Tip: Click on Pet transport in Europe to know more!


As we conclude our journey through this blog, it becomes clear that the process to apply for EU pet passport in 2023 isn't as intricate as it may appear, as long as you're well-prepared. Before your next excursion with your furry companion, ensure they possess a distinct identification chip, a recent rabies vaccination, and an authorised EU pet passport, all confirmed by a licensed veterinarian. Lastly, acquaint yourself with the regulations of your destination country and assemble the necessary documents. This thoughtful preparation will streamline the journey for both you and your pet.

For additional assistance, consider seeking guidance from a professional pet transportation company. At Exec Pets, we are renowned for providing top-tier pet transportation services across EU nations. Feel free to contact us or request a quote to learn more about pet transport requirements – we're here to assist you every step of the way.


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