As of 1 January 2012 the rules for travelling abroad with your pet changed to allow cats, dogs and ferrets to enter the UK from any country of the world under the Pet Travel Scheme (PETS).  This is great news for pets and pet owners as it means your furry friends can avoid the dreaded kennel or cattery and go on holiday with you.  However, be aware that certain standards must still be met to avoid quarantine.  The standards vary depending on the country you are returning from, but in all cases you must:

  • see a vet to have your pet fitted with a microchip, then
  • arrange for vaccinations against rabies and any other needed shots
  • get a pet passport from a vet
  • treat dogs for tapeworm
  • arrange travel on a PETS-approved carrier and route

It is essential to have your pet fitted with a microchip before being vaccinated against rabies.  The number should then be recorded on your pet’s passport.  It is a good idea to register the number on a database, along with details of your holiday plans.  If Fido falls in love and goes missing this will make it easier to reunite you with your pet .

What greater delight for the kids than to take the family pet in the car with you for a camping trip across the Channel. Again, it is important to check the requirements and to book in advance.  Check the Directgov website here for further details and information on travelling with pets and important links to Defra (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs).

If you decide not to go travelling abroad with your pet and need to use a kennel or cattery, be sure to choose a travel insurance policy that includes cover for *Pet Care.  This covers unexpected cattery and/or kennel fees incurred for delays of more than 12 hours on your trip home.  Delays could be due to events such as strikes, adverse weather or mechanical breakdown (as long as  not notified when you booked the trip or purchased insurance).  Remember to get a written report from your carrier stating the nature of the delay.

*always check the terms and conditions of your particular policy

Flickr cc:  Damian Gadal

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