Why You Should Get an EU Pet Passport
If you plan on living in or traveling to European Union countries with pets it makes sense to get the proper documentation. An EU Pet Passport ensures that your pet meets all the requirements for travel country to country within the European Union. It can also help save time when you travel to other countries and are bringing your pet.
In addition, an EU Pet Passport stores all your relevant pet history and documentation in a single location, including vet, vaccinations, microchip number, parasite treatment, etc.
Follow the easy steps below to get a certificate issued EU Pet Passport for your pet from a licensed veterinarian.
Step 1: Find an EU Veterinarian
Many travelers are confused and think that an EU Pet Passport is something they need before traveling to Europe. This is not the case. You’ll often see this stated incorrectly in pre travel information.
You get the passport after your arrival in Europe. Specifically, in your destination country. As soon as you can, find an EU veterinarian. Don’t delay because some paperwork expires.
Finding a veterinarian on the road isn’t as tough or scary as it might sound. We’ve been to dozens all over the world and have had pleasant experiences. We have a few tactics we use while locating a quality veterinarian abroad.
Google is the best place to start. Look for a vet that has high ratings and speaks English. Not all veterinarians list the languages they speak, so be sure to look through the reviews to find someone who may have commented on this. We’ve actually found that many veterinarians do speak English.
Another good resource are Facebook expat groups for the city in which you will be staying. They have more experience with the city and can tell you whether the veterinarian speaks your language.
Step 2: Veterinarian Visit
It’s simple to obtain the EU Pet Passport if you’ve got all your documentation. Most of the paperwork will be the same as what you used to import your pet. You’ll need to have the following paperwork ready to be provided to the vet:
- Pets rabies vaccination or rabies booster certificate
- Any tapeworm treatment
- Country Official Veterinary Certificate. This what you would have used to enter the EU with your pet. If you’re coming from the United States (this is your country of origin), this would be the health certificate from your local veterinarian
- Any blood tests or other paperwork you want documented in the Passport
- Your local address
- Your passport
These are the documents required to fly internationally with your pet, so you should already have them in order. Generally, your documents should not be older than 21 days. Note that most veterinarians will not “certify” records that were performed by another veterinarian.
In the three times we’ve gone to get EU Pet Passports, they’ve all cost less than €50 and took fewer than 30 minutes. We just show up without an appointment and the vet tech at reception completes the paperwork for us.
Advantages of an EU Pet Passport
When pets are traveling through EU countries, they’re supposed to be documented and have official papers like their human companions. For travel outside the EU, it’s important to remember that having a pet passport gives you the ability to reenter the EU without issue (like Ireland, Malta, and the United Kingdom).
That means you don’t have to obtain new export papers, EU health certificate, vaccinations, and go through the painstaking process all over again. Essentially, you’re free to travel and now you’ve got one place to store all of your pet’s records.
What does an EU Pet Passport Contain?
There is a ton of information inside the little blue book including:
- Details of ownership (name, address, passport number, telephone, etc.)
- Description of the animal (name, species, breed, date of birth, etc.)
- Microchip number and details
- Veterinarian details issuing the passport
- Vaccination against rabies
- Rabies antibody titer test approval
- Anti-echinococcus treatment records
- Other parasite treatment records
- Other vaccinations recorded and treatment records
All records are signed and marked by your veterinarian with official stamps of the medication that was used.
Things to Consider – How to Get a Pet Passport
Your EU Pet Passport does not require a photo of your pet, and you’re completely free to add one if you like.
When traveling outside of Europe, do not have unofficial, non-EU veterinarians write or document records in the passport. We made this mistake with Sora’s dog passport and while nothing happened, the USDA official informed us that this invalidates the whole passport. Alternatively, staple in the official signed paper copy of any vaccinations or other treatments performed by a non-EU vet.
We’ve used the EU pet passport for traveling in South America and back to the US. Though issued in Europe and designed for the European Pet Travel Scheme, it still simplified border crossings because all of the necessary documentation was in one place.
A EU Pet Passport can be used for dogs, cats, and ferrets. Unfortunately, it cannot be used with rabbits or other animals.
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How To – Getting en EU Pet Passport
Time needed: 2 hours.
Learn how to get an EU Pet Passport for your furry friend. This applies to once you’ve entered the EU. You cannot get one outside the EU.
- Find an EU Veterinarian
Search Google for a veterinarian that has high ratings and speaks English in your European city of choice. Schedule an appointment.
- Veterinarian Visit
Bring your pet’s documentation to the appointment. You’ll need the rabies vaccination, official health certificate from country of origin, any blood tests, a local address (this can be your AirBnB, hotel, or even campground), and your passport. Documentation must be issued in the last 21 days.
- Pay fro the EU Passport
Generally it costs less than €50 to get your EU Pet Passport. Then you can enjoy traveling in the EU and beyond!