Getting a pet passport opens doors to travelling to and from a European country with your beloved companion by your side. This document is what your furry friend needs to cross borders and travel abroad, and is an essential part of any planned journey outside of the UK.
So what exactly is a pet passport, and what are the steps you need to follow in order to get one?
What are Pet Passports?
Established under the Pet Travel Scheme in 2000, pet passports are documents which certify your dog’s identity, vaccination status and overall health to allow them entry and departure from certain countries. Since their implementation, pet passports have saved animal owners the previous hassle of going through endless documents and paperwork. This document was established to ensure that the animals being brought to and travelling from countries are not carrying any contagious or viral diseases and to put an end to animal smuggling and illegal animal trade.
Now you might be thinking, what exactly goes into a pet passport?
Much like human passports, which contain all the essential information that allows us to travel freely, pet passports work in the same way. The passport will contain proper identification of your dog’s identity, including their breed, age, gender, and vaccination history and can be issues from any certified veterinary. The passport will also contain confirmation of your pet receiving necessary treatments required by the country of your destination.
In order to apply for a pet passport, you need to have the following things in order:
- The Microchip. If your pet is to travel with you, they must have a microchip in order to easily track them and ensure that your pet will be found and identified if it gets lost. The vet will microchip your dog at the appointment if they are not chipped already.
- Vaccinations. Your dog’s passport is there to certify that they have taken the necessary vaccinations before leaving the country. Make sure your pet is up to date on all the necessary vaccinations required to your destination of travel. Planning ahead of time is essential, as some vaccines such as Rabies need further blood tests to confirm that the vaccine has worked.
- Health Checkup. Taking your dog along with you when issuing the passport is necessary, as the vet needs to preform an overall checkup on their health as well as confirm their identity in terms of their breed, age, and overall health status in relation to the submitted documents and information.
Book an appointment with a certified vet or clinic and ask them ahead of time of all the necessary steps you will need to take depending on your country of travel. Certain countries might have different requirements, and therefore researching what vaccinations and treatments your dog needs is important to ensuring your pet is allowed to travel.