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UK Government changes UK’s Pet Travel Scheme

They say that Brits are pet crazy. We buy our pets clothes. We send them to the hairdresser. We feed them organic chicken before putting them to bed in bespoke baskets to the sounds of whale music. OK, so maybe you haven’t gone that far but many of us like to take our pets on holiday with us. A two week trek across the Alps is so much better with your dog running alongside you. Why shouldn’t your pet cat come with you when you pop to your parents in the Italian lakes?

Thankfully as of the 1st January 2012 the UK Government will be introducing new rules making it easier for you to travel with your pet. Under the new arrangements all pet dogs, cats and ferrets from the EU can enter or re-enter the UK without quarantine as long as you adhere to certain rules concerning your pet passport.

A pet passport is a way of allowing your pet to travel between certain qualifying countries (mainly within the EU) as often as you please during the life of the passport. With a valid pet passport you can avoid export certificates and quarantine. All that is required is an identity-chip and a rabies vaccination. You are then issued with a passport 21 days after the vaccination and you and your pet can go, and come back again, and go again and come back again …

Steps involved in getting a pet passport:
Day 1 – An identity-chip** is inserted (if required) and the first rabies vaccine given.
Day 14 – The second rabies vaccination is given*.
Day 21 – You are free to travel between participating countries.
(*Please note that although the second rabies vaccination is not an absolute requirement it is highly recommended it)

(** If your pet already has an identity-chip the vet will simply check the chip at each stage of the above process)

For more information go to www.defra.gov.uk/pets

Happy Holidays!

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