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New pet import rules for European Union and the United Kingdom

  • Published
  • By Lynn Miller, Doctor of veterinary medicine
  • Travis Veterinary Treatment Facility
As permanent change of station season starts, it's important to plan ahead for all of your dependents, including the family pet. New rules and regulations have tightened the import of animals into the European Union and the United Kingdom, but the Veterinary Treatment Facility has you covered if you follow a few simple rules and plan ahead.

1. All dogs and cats must have a 15 digit International Organization for Standardization compliant microchip. Not sure if your pet's microchip fits the bill? Call your veterinarian to find out, or stop by our clinic and we'll scan your pet for free.

2. All dogs and cats must have a valid rabies vaccine administered after 15 digit microchip implantation. Rabies vaccines must be given no less than 21 days before entry onto EU and UK soil. It is critical that the rabies vaccine was administered after the microchip or it will not be recognized as a legal rabies vaccination.

3. New: All pets, regardless of species, traveling to the UK and EU must have a United States Department of Agriculture Health Certificate, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service 7001, filled out no more than 10 days prior to landing on the foreign country's soil. This is critical for those taking leave en route. Don't let your pet's health certificate expire while you're on leave. It's only good for 10 days once signed. If this certificate is obtained at a civilian veterinary practice it will need to be countersigned by the local USDA office.

4. All pets going to the European Union affiliated countries: Must have a valid 2012 EU health certificate. New: This form is no longer the one valid for four months. It is only valid for 10 days once signed. Just like the APHIS 7001, if it is signed by a civilian veterinarian, it must be countersigned by the local USDA office.

5. All Dogs going to the UK: Your tapeworm treatment must be performed no more than five days and not less than 24 hours before landing in the UK. We cannot issue you the 2012 EU health certificate before the tapeworm treatment so the health certificate is only good for five days maximum.

6. Dogs going to Germany: Make sure your pet is not on Germany's breed restriction list.
7. Exotic pets: Depending on the species, additional forms may be required. Check with us at the Travis VTF, or the Sacramento USDA APHIS Office at (916) 854-3950.

8. Resources: and

Need help figuring it all out? No problem. Veterinary Treatment Facility staff are available to answer any questions you have from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday at 424-3010.

Don't leave a valued member of the family behind this PCS season. Let us be your comprehensive source for your pet's health certificate needs. Appointments are available Mondays and Wednesdays from 8:20 a.m. to 3:40 p.m. and Fridays from 8 a.m. to noon. Appointments for PCS moves are free with the exception of dogs going to the UK. Owners moving to the UK will need to buy one dose of praziquantel tapeworm treatment or bring a dose of product with you to the appointment.

Moving somewhere else? We also have the latest regulations for Japan, Hawaii, Guam and many more. Give us a call or stop by the VTF to pick up a copy of the rules governing you and your pet's future home. We're located at 411 Lane St., Bldg 543, at the corner of Lane and Hickam, next to the construction for the new Military Working Dog Kennels.