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Travelling with dogs, cats and ferrets

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To be considered as a non-commercial movement of a pet, the following requirements must be met:
- The maximum number of animals being moved are five. There are some exceptions for competitions, exhibitions or sports activities, duly documented for animals older than 6 months.
- They have no commercial purpose and there is no transfer of ownership.
- The pets travel with their owner or a person responsible for the animal(s) on their behalf during the trip. It is allowed pet and owner travel in a different means of transport if it occurs within a period of no more than five days from the movement of the owner/responsible person.

If the movement of your animal(s) does not correspond to a non-commercial movement of a pet, then it is a commercial movement:

Requirements for commercial movements between EU countries

Requirements for trade movements from third countries

If you are going to travel with your pet within the EU, you should know that there are rules that apply in all Member States.

If you are going to visit a country outside the EU, you must comply with the requirements of that country in order to enter it, and you must also comply with a number of rules in order to return to the EU:

1. Travelling to Spain from an EU country

To introduce a dog, cat or ferret into Spain, the pet must:

- Be identified with a microchip, or tattoo (if it was done before 03/July/2011 and provided that it remains legible).

- Be vaccinated against rabies with a valid vaccine at the time of travel and included in the passport.

- Have a European pet passport . The sections "Owner", "Description of the animal", "Marking", "Issue of the passport" and "Rabies vaccination" must be completed in the passport (see Annex I to the Instruction ).

The sections on “Serological test”, “Treatment against ticks”, “Treatment against Echinococcus”, “Other vaccinations”, “Clinical examination”, “Legalisation” and “Others” are not compulsory for movements from other Member States to Spain.

Instructions on the introduction into Spain of dogs, cats and ferrets from other Member States

Dogs, cats and ferrets under 15 weeks of age, and therefore not vaccinated with a valid rabies vaccine, are not authorized to enter Spain:

- The minimum age for vaccination is 12 weeks.

- For the vaccine to be valid, at least 21 days must elapse since the day of vaccination.


2. Travelling from Spain to an EU country

To travel to the EU from Spain, your pet must

- Be identified with a microchip or tattoo (if this was done before 03/07/2011and provided that it remains legible).

- Be vaccinated against rabies with a valid vaccine at the time of travel.

- Have a European pet passport.

And if you are going to travel with a dog to the Ireland, Malta, Finland or Norway, in addition

- You must treat your dog against E. multilocularis between 24 and 120 hours before arriving in the country

Health requirements demanded by the Member States

3. Travel to a non-EU country

To travel to a third country your pet must meet the requirements of that country:

- Inquire at the embassy or consulate of that country.
- Find out on the website of the Ministry responsible for the country.
- Consult the information available in the section on exports of pets at  CEXGAN, as well as :

Practical guide to travel with your pet

Agriculture areas: Contacts 

The countries of Part I of Annex II to Regulation (EU) 577/2013 (Andorra, Switzerland, Faroe Islands, Gibraltar, Greenland, Liechtenstein, Monaco, Norway, San Marino, Vatican City, Iceland) are considered equivalent to the European Union in health terms, so entry into the EU from any of those countries is considered an intra-Community movement, and must comply with the requirements of paragraph 2. However, to travel from Spain to any of these countries, they have to be considered as non-EU countries, and take care of the aforementioned. The European passport in force is often sufficient, but other countries have specific requirements such as Iceland.

To obtain the export certificate for your pet, your veterinarian must request it through CEXGAN


4. Returning to Spain after visiting a non-EU country

You must return with your pet through one of the designated Travelers' Points of Entry (December-2023) and declare to the Guardia Civil's Tax Department that you are traveling with a pet, presenting the pet's documentation.

If you are going to travel to one of the third countries included in Annex II of Regulation 577/2013, to return, your pet must comply with what is indicated in section I.

If you are going to travel to a country not listed in Annex II (rabies risk countries), you must meet the requirements of paragraph 1, and in addition:

- You must have your pet tested for rabies in an approved laboratory before you travel.
- The result of this test will be reflected in your passport by your veterinarian and must be equal to or higher than 0.5 IU/ml.

Rabies serological test

At least 30 days after vaccination against rabies (in the case of first vaccination) a blood sample must be taken from the animal to verify that the level of post-vaccination antibodies is sufficient, i.e. equal to or greater than 0.5 IU/ml.

(See updated list of approved laboratories).

Information note on samples

The entry of the animal is only authorised after 3 months (see FAQs) from the date of the blood sample collection.

Therefore, the minimum age of an animal coming from a country with a rabies risk is 7 months:

- The minimum age for vaccination is 12 weeks.
- The blood sample for the antibody test shall be taken at the earliest 30 days after inoculation.
- It must be 3 months from the time the blood sample is taken until the animal is allowed to enter the EU.

If the animal is moved from an EU country to a third country and then back, this three-month period will not apply if the test is carried out with a favourable result before the animal leaves the EU territory. This information shall be recorded in the animal's passport.

If the vaccination protocol is maintained, the serological test shall be valid for the lifetime of the animal.

5. Introducing a pet from a non-EU country

To introduce a pet from a third country, you must enter with your pet through one of the designated Travelers' Points of Entry (December - 2023) and declare to the Guardia Civil's Tax Office that you are traveling with a pet, presenting the pet's documentation.

In those cases where there is no European pet passport, the animals must be accompanied by

- An animal health certificate, which must be signed by an official veterinarian of the third country, and presented at least in Spanish;
- and a declaration, both in accordance with EU models, and
- Certified copy (see FAQs) of the identification and vaccination data of the animal/animals.

Model certificate and declaration in Spanish/English:

Model of certificate (Valid from 01/11/2019) 

Besides, your pet will have to:

- Be identified with a microchip, or tattoo (if done before 03/07/2011)
- Be vaccinated against rabies with a valid vaccine at the time of travel.
- If you come from a country not listed in Annex II to Regulation 577/2013, the pet must have undergone a serological test for rabies (see paragraph 4) in an approved laboratory.


YOU WILL NEED MORE INFORMATION IF... You are going to transit, you are travelling with more than 5 animals, and you are travelling separately from your pet...

More information and FAQs

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