The PETS scheme
The scheme is designed to stop the spread of rabies and other diseases into the UK while still allowing pets to travel.
The UK has been free of rabies for many years, but mammals are still at risk in some other countries. All rabies-susceptible animals entering the UK have to spend six months in quarantine, unless they arrive under and meet all the conditions of PETS.
Most European Union (EU) countries and many outside the EU have joined PETS. You can check details and the full procedure for preparing your pet on the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) website.
To be eligible to go, your cat, dog or ferret must:
- First be fitted with a microchip.
- Then be vaccinated against rabies.
- Wait 21 days from the date of their first rabies vaccination before travelling to another European Community country.
- Not have visited any non-approved countries or territories for at least six months before they enter or re-enter the UK.
You must also ensure that your pet:
- Is issued with a pet passport by your vet – you must order this from the Department of Agriculture & Rural Development (DARD) on 02890 524622. This will then be posted directly to your veterinary clinic.
- Is treated by a vet for tapeworm and ticks, not less than 24 hours and not more than 48 hours before checking in with a PETS-approved carrier for the journey back to the UK.
- Travels into the UK on a PETS-approved sea, air or rail route.
If you intend to return to the UK, please allow at least 2 months before you travel to carry out all the relevant vaccines, tests etc carried out.
It is your responsiblilty to ensure that you meet the transport requirements set by your travel company ie crate size etc.