Do I need a Pet Passport?

Dog in car

The UK has for many years been free from a number of diseases, most notably Rabies. In order to maintain this, animals entering from abroad were in the past forced to endure six months quarantine in an approved kennels. This was extremely stressful for both owners and their pets. So, in recent years the government has introduced the PETS Travel Scheme which allows animals to re-enter the UK without the need for quarantine.

What is involved?
  1. Firstly, your pet needs to be individually identified by the implantation of a microchip. See our Microchip leaflet for more details on microchips.
  2. Your pet then needs to be vaccinated against rabies (it is illegal to vaccinate a non-microchipped animal). This can be done at the same visit as the microchipping. See our leaflet on Vaccinations for more details about Rabies.**There is a minimum waiting period of 21 days from the date of the first rabies vaccination before a pet is allowed to travel to or from the UK. A waiting period does not apply to booster vaccinations providing they are kept up to date**
  3. Get a Pet Passport. This will be completed and issued by one of the veterinary surgeons at Oakhill Veterinary Group at Windermere or Ambleside.
What is a Pet Passport?

The UK Pet Passport is a re-entry passport for coming back into the UK from abroad. It does not necessarily give you the right to enter foreign countries with your pet. You must always contact DEFRA well in advance of your intended date of travel to enquire about the entry requirements for other countries.

Entry into most European countries is generally straight forward. However, import requirements into other countries may require a Veterinary examination and certification, perhaps 48 hours before departure.

Certain countries have slightly different Rabies booster vaccination protocols in order to satisfy their import requirements.

For up to date information on pet travel abroad go to:

Before entering the UK

From 1st January 2012, all pet dogs (including assistance dogs) must be treated for tapeworm (see our leaflet on Worms in pets for more information about tapeworms). The treatment must be administered by a veterinary surgeon not less than 24 hours and not more than 120 hours (five days) before its scheduled arrival in the UK. There is no longer mandatory requirement for tick treatment, however we would strongly recommend that you treat your pet with a effective tick treatment before leaving the UK (please refer to our leaflet on Ticks for more details).

What happens when the passport expires?

Your Pet Passport will normally expire on the day the Rabies booster vaccination is due. Provided a booster vaccination is given before this date we can update your pet’s passport.

Exotic Diseases

When travelling abroad please be aware that some countries have animal diseases that are not present in the UK. While it may not be a requirement of the Pet Passport you may need to take further precautions to keep your pet healthy. Please refer to our Exotic Diseases leaflet for more information.


There are three price components to the Pet Passport Scheme. These separate costs are subject to change. Currently (June 2019) these are:

Microchip: £17.50
Rabies vaccination: £42.80
Issue Passport: £49.00
Total: £109.30