Veterinary - 21-12-2018 - Cyril Hayes MVB MRCVS - 0 comments
The Pet Travel Scheme and Brexit

When the UK leaves the EU on March 29th 2019 the hope is it will agree a 'deal', almost certainly on a continued harmonious relationship. However, the government does wish to prepare the country for the prospect of 'no deal' and there are implications for this in relation to the Pet Travel Scheme.

Currently and up to March 29th 2019

Under the EU Pet Travel Scheme dogs, cats and ferrets can travel to and from EU countries provided they hold an EU Pet Passport and satisfy a few other criteria:

  • Have a microchip
  • Received a Rabies vaccination, after the microchip was inserted, and at least more than 21 days before travelling
  • In the case of dogs, receive treatment for tapeworms between one and five days before entering UK 

After March 29th 2019 (if there is no deal)

If there is a 'no deal' scenario then after the UK leaves the EU it will become a third country for the purpose of the pet travel scheme.In respect of being a third country there are a further three categorisations; 

1. Part 1 listed countries operate under the same EU Pet Travel scheme rules as EU member states and there would be only minor changes needed to the documentation to travel between the UK and EU but no change to the health requirements / preparations.

2. Part 2 listed countries require some new conditions, most importantly the issue of an Official Veterinarian (OV) Health Certificate. This certificate confirms the health, rabies vaccination status and identification of the pet. It would differ from the EU Pet Passport, would be valid for 10 days and for up to four months of onward travel within the EU. A new certificate would have to be issued for each trip to the EU. On entering the EU pet owners travelling with their pet would be required to report to a Travellers' Point of Entry.

3. Unlisted third countries. This is the worst case scenario as in this case;

  • Pet owners would need to prove their pets are effectively vaccinated against rabies. In this situation we would recommend a very recent rabies vaccination, or more likely two vaccinations 14-21 days apart and then a blood test 30 days after the latest vaccination to show an effective antibody response
  •  There is then a 3 month waiting time (from the date a successful blood test was obtained) before the pet can travel.
  •  An OV Health Certificate would need to be issued within 10 days of travelling confirming all the criteria have been met; again this will be different from the EU Pet Passport, and a new one would need to be issued for every journey.
  • On arrival into the EU pet owners would need to visit a Travellers' Point of Entry, and also to provide proof of microchip, rabies vaccination and the blood test result alongside their pet's health certificate

To re-iterate, it is, I am sure, in the UK and EU's interest to arrive at a 'deal' that also encompasses Pet Travel but the government and the George Veterinary Group would want everyone to be as familiar as possible with the possible implications of a 'no deal' scenario. For example, if you are travelling after March 2019 you may wish to come and talk to us about what you may need to put in place quite soon in order for this to be possible in all scenarios. 

Further information can be found here 

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