Avoiding quarantine or delay on entering a foreign country is easier than you think. Get a pet passport.
Although technically a pet passport does not exist outside of the European Union, veterinarians in the United States and Canada can help you obtain one. The passport is a convenient way to ensure that your dog or cat has all the proper documentation in one single place needed to avoid delays upon entering a foreign country.The passport allows border officials to verify your pet’s health and vaccination records.
Typically, a pet passport contains the following basic information:
- Photo and description of the animal
- Owner’s name, address, and phone number
- Information about your pet’s microchip
- proof of rabies vaccination
- Serology tests to confirm the presence of rabies antibodies
Your veterinarian can help you assemble all the essential tests and paperwork needed for a pet passport. United States citizens will need the following when entering most European Union countries:
- EU Form 998 for the country you will visit, completed by your veterinarian and certified by your state’s USDA veterinarian
- Your pet’s inoculation record, sometimes referred to as the Rabies Certificate, must be attached to Form 998
Additional forms are needed for the United Kingdom (England, Scotland, and Ireland), as well as Norway and Sweden. These are:
- Results from your pet’s blood titer test.
- The Ticks and Tapeworms treatment form
Forms and requirements vary for each country. Make sure you have the proper ones. You can contact the embassy or department of state of the countries you are visiting to learn about requirements.
Travel outside the EU is trickier. No matter where you travel, however, have your veterinarian complete a Health Certificate. If there is no Health Certificate speciific to the country you will visit, use the International Health Certificate USDA-APHIS 7001 form, also known as the United States Interstate and International Certificate of Health Exam for Small Animals.
Timing and Costs
Your veterinarian should fill out the International Health Certificate 14 days or less before your date of travel. Make sure your pet has had a rabies shot at least 30 days, but not more than one year before you leave.
The certificate will specifically list the following information:
- Name and age of pet
- Country of origin
- Details about inoculations
- Statement that the pet is healthy and free of parasites
All EU countries require a USDA certified stamp on the International Health Certificate. When you have assembled all documentation needed, take original copies to your nearest USDA/APHIS/VS Area Office where the papers will be endorsed and stamped. Cost is $35 but jumps to $111 if the country you are visiting requires the blood titer test and the Ticks and Tapeworms treatment form. More than one animal may be listed on a single form.