Travelling with your dog, Photo by Egor Gordeev on Unsplash
Travelling with your dog, photo by Egor Gordeev on Unsplash

Brexit and travelling with your dog in the EU

After such a long spell cooped up indoors during 2020, we’re all dreaming of our next holiday. But, if you’re thinking of taking your dog on holiday with you to an EU country after 1st January 2021, there’s some changes you’ll need to be aware of.

With the Covid-19 pandemic currently having such a strong hold over our lives at the moment, holidays seem like a distant fantasy, right? We all know it’s going to be some time before we’re off enjoying nice holidays and visiting friends abroad again. However, if you do usually travel with your beloved furry friend in tow, it’s worth knowing that the rules have now changed for them as well as us!

Now the Brexit transition period is over, there’ll be new rules that you’ll need to follow when travelling abroad with your pooch. As if life isn’t complicated enough right now, I hear you say. Indeed.

These new rules mean that pet passports will no longer be accepted. Instead, you’ll need a valid Animal Health Certificate (AHC).

What’s an Animal Health Certificate?

Unlike the pet passport, getting an AHC will require a little bit of forward planning before you go travelling with your dog. This certificate will need to be obtained from your vet. And you’ll need to get it no more than ten days before you depart on your journey. The document will contain your dog’s vaccination and microchip details and will be signed and dated by the vet.

AHC’s are only valid for a set period of time. So, you’ll need a new certificate every time you travel. You’ll also need one of these certificates when travelling to Northern Ireland.

And some countries will still have extra requirements, such as getting tapeworm treatment. If in doubt, it’s definitely worth checking the government website before booking any trips abroad. Or ask your vet for advice.

In the meantime, while we all keep safe at home, we hope you are continuing to enjoy your local dog walks, exploring new bits of your hometowns, paths, fields and woodlands. And hopefully in 2021 (or 2022), you’ll get to plan new places to go travelling with your dog!