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EU Rules on Travelling with Pets in 2024- A Guide!

Are you planning a Euro trip with your furry friend in 2024? Well, you're in for an adventure, but before you start packing your bags, there's some important information you need to know about travelling with pets in the EU. These regulations aid pet travel between EU member states, including Norway, Northern Ireland, and 27 other countries in total. These regulations extend to travel to the EU from non-EU countries or territories. In this blog, we will discuss EU animal transport regulations and how pet transportation services can help you when you think about moving with your pets.

Understanding EU Rules & Regulations on Travelling with Pets

The importance of EU rules for travelling with pets cannot be overstated for ensuring a smooth trip with your furry friends. Let’s discuss the details of what you need to do when travelling with pets:


Before even starting to pack your pet’s essentials for a trip, prioritising their identification through microchipping is paramount. The EU mandates that all pets entering its borders must have a microchip that adheres to the ISO 11784 or 11785 standards. This microchip serves as an electronic ID for your pet and is important for their identification and safety throughout their travels. 

It’s essential to microchip your pet before administering any rabies vaccinations. The sequence is crucial because the microchip number is recorded at the time of vaccination to ensure that the vaccine is officially linked to your pet. This step is foundational in creating a verifiable health history for your pet, ensuring they are recognised, and their vaccination status is validated across borders.

Rabies Vaccination

Pets need to get a rabies shot before travelling in the EU to keep them and others safe from the virus. This rule is very important because the EU wants to stop rabies from spreading. Pets must receive the rabies vaccine no sooner than 21 days before their travel date. It’s vital to note that the vaccination must occur after microchipping. 

If the vaccination precedes the microchip implantation, it will not be considered valid, necessitating a repeat of the vaccination process. This regulation ensures that each pet’s rabies vaccination is accurately documented and linked to their unique microchip ID, facilitating seamless travel across EU countries.

The Pet Passport

The pet passport is an essential document for pets travelling within the EU. It acts as a comprehensive record of your pet’s health and vaccination history, including the rabies vaccination and microchip number. For pets and their owners travelling within the EU, the pet passport simplifies the travel process, allowing for easy movement across borders. 

However, for those coming from outside the EU, obtaining an EU Animal Health Certificate is required. This certificate serves a similar purpose to the pet passport, ensuring your pet meets all health regulations for entry into the EU. The process for obtaining this certificate can vary, so it’s advisable to consult with a veterinarian well in advance of your travel plans.

Tapeworm Treatment (For Dogs Only)

For dog owners planning to visit Finland, Ireland, Malta, or certain other countries within the EU, tapeworm treatment is mandatory. This treatment must be administered by a licensed veterinarian and documented in your pet’s passport or EU Animal Health Certificate. 

The timing of this treatment is critical, with a requirement for it to be administered no less than 24 hours and no more than 120 hours (5 days) before entry into the designated countries. This regulation aims to prevent the introduction and spread of tapeworms in these countries, protecting both local and visiting canine populations.

Travelling More Than 5 Pets

If you are travelling with more than 5 pets (cats, dogs, or ferrets), is subject to specific animal transport regulations:

  • They must be participating in a competition, exhibition, or sporting event, evidenced by documents such as registration papers.

  • Each pet must be over 6 months old.

Suppose none of the exceptions mentioned above apply to you. In that case, your pets must adhere to the animal transport regulations that govern the importation into or trade within the EU of dogs, cats, or ferrets.

Travelling with Other Pets

European pet passports are exclusively issued for dogs, cats, and ferrets. If you intend to travel to another EU country with pets other than these, such as birds, reptiles, ornamental aquatic animals, rodents, or rabbits, please refer to the national animal transport regulations of the destination country for guidance on entry requirements. For example, if you are travelling with such animals to Poland, you need the following:

  • Description of the pet's characteristics or marking.

  • Species, and if applicable, breed, owner-stated date of birth, gender, and colour of the pet.

  • Owner's name, contact information, and signature.

  • Veterinarian's name, contact information, and signature who issued or completed the identification document.

  • Details on any preventive health measures administered for diseases or infections besides rabies.

  • Any other relevant information concerning the pet's health status.

How Does Pet Transport Service Help You with EU Rules?

Pet transportation services make it easier to follow the rules when taking your pets across European Union (EU) borders. They know all about the rules for pet travel in the EU, like which vaccinations your pet needs and what paperwork is necessary. These services help make sure your pet meets health and safety standards so they can travel smoothly between countries. Whether it's getting the right documents or finding a comfy place for your pet during the trip, these services take away the stress for pet owners. They handle everything efficiently so your pet can travel safely and legally, making moving with pets less worrying.


As of 2024, the EU's updated animal transport regulations on travelling with pets aim to streamline procedures while ensuring the welfare of animals. These rules provide clarity for pet owners, facilitating smoother journeys across borders. From microchipping to travelling with various pets, you can adhere to every EU rule to have a comfortable journey with your pets.

At Exec Pets, we understand how crucial it is to follow regulations for the safety and comfort of pets during transportation. We are dedicated to upholding these standards, ensuring a smooth experience for both pets and owners. By following these rules, we make pet travel easier and more secure, promoting responsible and worry-free journeys for our beloved companions. Contact Us Today!


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