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What is a Pet Passport

Are you thinking of going away on holiday or immigrating to another country? If so, your pets can come too! In this article we are going to explain everything you need to know about pet passports – whether or not you need one, how long it takes to get one, how much they cost and more.

What is a pet passport?

A pet passport is a travel booklet used for pets travelling to Europe that holds all the information on a specific pet. It includes the owner’s details and pet info such as name, breed, microchip number, and the vaccinations and anti-parasite treatments given. It also has a section for health certification which must be completed for airline journeys.

Does my pet need a passport?

Pet passports are for travelling in Europe, so if your pet is travelling to the rest of the world, they do not need one, even for returning to the UK, as this is done using an Animal Health Certificate. Whilst passports are not required for non-EU countries, they can be used for referencing the pet information in one handy booklet if one is already issued.

How long does it take to get a pet passport?

Pet passports are held in most Vet surgeries and can be issued immediately, however this does not mean they are valid. You must do the following:-

  • Have the pet microchipped (if not already done)
  • Have your pet vaccinated against rabies
  • Wait for 21 days for the vaccine to become effective for travel - once this happens the passport is valid for use
  • The passport will have valid from and valid until dates shown on the rabies vaccination page to ensure the vaccine is current when the pet needs to travel. Booster vaccines do not have a waiting period providing it is administered before the expiry date of the previous one.
  • Looking at the pictured information, the pet will be able to travel to an EU Country from 6th September 2019 and can do so up until 16th August 2022. The next vaccine (booster) should be given before 16/08/22 to ensure the pet remains ok for travel.
    pet passport
  • Many EU Countries do have confirmed cases of rabies and as such they require current vaccinations regardless of travel plans, so a passport is a handy booklet to use and keep track of vaccination status.
  • There are additional pages for routine booster vaccines, worming and tick treatments and also for issuing a "fit to travel" exam which is needed for pets undertaking airline journeys.

How long does a pet passport last?

A passport lasts for the pets’ entire life, there is no expiry date as such, however, it only remains valid if the rabies vaccines are current. Expired vaccines do not mean a new passport is needed, this is only required if the pages become full, a new starter rabies vaccine is added and again become valid after the 21 days wait, just like the first vaccination.

How much is a Pet Passport?

The cost of a passport is determined by the issuing Veterinary Surgery, so it is difficult to cost accurately because each surgery has its own pricing system. You should expect to pay for a microchip (if not already done), a rabies vaccination, the booklet itself, and also the Vets time to complete it. As a guide, Fetchapet would charge £150 as of September 2019 for a completed Pet Passport.

How do I get a pet passport?

Most Veterinary surgeries can issue passports, however, not all practices hold a stock of them, so it is wise to tell them a couple of weeks in advance that you need one issued.

What does a pet passport look like?

Pet passports look somewhat similar to human passports, see image below.

pet passport