Pet Passport – what is it? Why does your pet need one? How much will it cost?

Pet Passport - why it is important for international pet travelThe term “pet passport” was originally popularized in the European Union (EU) where dog, cat or ferret owners could get a blue pet passport from their veterinarian and travel freely through the EU member countries. This is still true today for people living in the EU. It will last for the lifetime of the pet as long as the rabies vaccination is kept up to date.

However, for pet owners residing in countries outside of the EU, a “pet passport” is simply a term we use to represent all of the pertinent documentation needed to take your pet to other countries. Customs officials will need to see these documents in order to clear your pet, and the inconvenience caused by losing them can be significant.

Your veterinarian can help you create a pet passport for your pet to enter almost any country in the world. For example, if you are from the United States and are visiting most European Union countries, then the pet passport will consist of the following:

  • The Annex IV and APHIS 7001 forms for the country you will be visiting (they are all different) completed by your veterinarian and endorsed by the State USDA veterinarian.
  • Your pet’s inoculation record which must be attached to the certified Annex IV form. (Sometimes the inoculation record is referred to as the Rabies Certificate.)

If you are visiting one of the United Kingdom countries (England, Ireland or Scotland) or Finland or Malta, your pet will need proof of a tapeworm test to complete your pet passport.

Every country in the world will require a minimum of proof of good health and a rabies certificate, although the rules for additional testing vary widely from country to country. You should have a Health Certificate completed by your veterinarian. This certificate is also referred to as a Veterinary or Sanitary Certificate. Sometimes, Import Permits and other testing is required.

The cost for a pet passport will depend on your veterinarian’s fees, the fees for micro chipping (if required), and the fees for completing and endorsing the necessary forms. There will always be a trip to the vet just prior to travel for a health certificate. Other tests such as tapeworm, internal/external parasites, microchips, and blood titer tests, if required, will affect the cost. USDA endorsement in the USA or CFIA endorsement in Canada will add $38.00 per form at this writing and if a titer test is required, the costs rise to $121.00. Many countries also require an Import Permit and they will charge for processing it.

The first thing to do is to find out the requirements to bring your pet to your destination country. In some cases (like Hawaii), you have to plan 6 months in advance to avoid quarantine. The key to avoiding delays at the border and/or quarantine when traveling with your pet is to have your pet passport complete and accurate for the countries you are visiting.

You can find information on country requirements in our immigration section and pet passports with instructions on over 240 countries all over the world. You can also post questions on our blog homepage or forum and we will answer them promptly. More information on pet passports can be found here:


Pet Passport – what is it? Why does your pet need one? How much will it cost? — 120 Comments

  1. Ines – you can find requirements to import your dog to Lebanon here and there are links to further instructions and forms if you need them: We cannot quote costs but we can look at your route and see what airline serves you efficiently and what the layover airports are. You will need to give us your origination city/country for further comment.

  2. i will be going to lebanon for a 2 month vacation i have a 8 month old rottweiler he will be about 10 months when we go . I dont want to leave my pup with anyone because im sure they wont take care of him like i do. What am i supposed to do exactly and ABOUT how much does it cost for his passport and everything all in .

  3. Chloe – the health certificate will be good for 4 months of travel in the EU. If you will be there longer than that, you can get your dogs an EU Pet Passport. Additional requirements depend on the country you are leaving from. See Also know that, when flying AF, if you have a layover, your dogs will need to clear customs in the layover country.

  4. My husband and I going to be in France from Sept 1 to Feb 1 (so, 5 months) and I am bringing TWO dogs, one 30 # dog in cargo and one 14.5 # dog on the plane. I have checked with Air France and downloaded a certificate that says, ” MODEL HEALTH CERTIFICATE FOR THE NON-COMMERCIAL MOVEMENT INTO A MEMBER STATE FROM A TERRITORY OR THIRD COUNTRY OF DOGS, CATS OR FERRETS IN ACCORDANCE WITH ARTICLE 5(1) AND (2) OF REGULATION (EU) No 576/2013″. I assume I need to get an EU passport once I am there. Both dogs are >16 weeks of age (one is 16 YEARS!) and both have rabies vaccinations and microchips. What else do I need to do?

  5. Ruben – we refer to a “pet passport” as the documents required to import a pet to a specific country. If you are in the EU, then you can get an EU Pet Passport for your dog, cat or ferret from your veterinarian. What country will you be traveling to?

  6. i need info nation about Passport for my 3 dogs
    they have all the recor up date include chip where i need to go and get the passport
    how much they cost for each one.

  7. October 2018, my wife and i will travel to the Philippines and we are bringing our small dog with us. What do we need to do so that we can bring our dog with us? Please help us and thank you!

  8. U. O’Connor – all commercial airlines will require that your pet flies into the UK and Ireland as air cargo. You can fly into mainland EU with your dog in the cabin as long as it can fit comfortably in an airline-compliant pet carrier and your airline will allow it. From the mainland, you would need to look at ferry options to Ireland. Many of these ferries require that your dog travels in a car. Irish Ferries is one such example.

  9. Can I bring my dog from NY to Ireland on vacation? He is 18 lbs and I don’t want him in cargo. What airlines may I use?

  10. Hello Malena – if you want to avoid the cargo requirement into the UK, then you may want to consider flying to AMS, taking the train to Rotterdam and taking a pet friendly ferry like Stena to Hull. You do not need an EU Pet Passport to do this. The EU health certificate that your vet completes within 10 days of travel will be good for 4 months of travel within the EU. If you are there longer, you can get your pet an EU Pet Passport from a vet in the EU.

  11. Hello!
    I have big concerns about bringing my dog from Jakarta to UK. I’ve already have an agent who is in charge of all the necessary documents. I’m in the UK but with a good advice I can choose between take her as a cargo or go there and bring her like a exceed luggage buying a ticket and going there.
    Well, It seems, I can take the dog through out 2 ways;

    1- with KLM to Amsterdam, like a luggage exceed and then from Amsterdam to UK by land or by ferry. cheapest option but I don’t know how I can take my dog from there, Amsterdam to UK without the EU passport. She is from Jakarta so I will only have all the required documents ( import, health.. microchip, titer Rabia blood test…etc)

    2- like cargo;
    2a- with Malaysian airlines with which one I have lot of concerns about how they treat pets but is the shortest way, less hours to London. I saw terribly reviews only from customers flying without I’m afraid of how they can treat an animal if the are so rude with the normal customers)
    2b- with kLM again but like cargo to get into UK. More hours that with Malaysian airlines.
    As a cargo it’s so expensive but if I do it from Amsterdam would be cheaper and I would travel with here in the same plane, and also I trust more in KLM to bring pets. But in this case my concern is the one I mentioned before. If I will be able to travel with those documents to UK, but without passport.
    I knew also I can do it from France but I’ll have the same problem that travelling to Amsterdam. Will it be necessary to do an European Passport once I get Those cities?
    I’m not sure if I explained well all my concerns, about to take her into UK by land or ferry, about Malaysian airlines, the bed way to bring here and also the cheapest way.
    Thanks so much in advance


  12. Susie – the airlines will never give you a guarantee that your pup will be on the same flight as you are; however, you can request to see the manifest before you board. Pups flying as air cargo as subject to the demands on the cargo hold, a bit more than those flying as checked baggage. If not on your flight, then the airline will prioritize the transport on the next flight and will care for your dog during the holding time. That said, when you land in London, a registered agent must pick up your dog and take it to the Animal Reception Center where you will claim it. Normally, the process can take 2-4 hours to complete. The agent is normally arranged by the airline and built into the price of the ticket.

  13. I am at my wits and trying to get my little 9 pound dog into England. Airlines give such different opinions that I dare not book a flight. I’m happy to have my dog in cargo but would like it to be on the same flight as myself. How do I go around guaranteeing that.? Rather than a transport company that may not get in or be around when I get there either can anyone help me?

  14. Vanessa – veterinary officials must have told your husband why there was a problem with your dog. Were the veterinary offices closed? If you still need assistance, this agent may be able to help you:

  15. My husband flew in our pet to the USA from Honduras and is flying back, but once at the airport they won’t let him get on the plane with our dog….although she has all her papers in order. What can we do.

  16. Hello Fi – we intended to say Northern Ireland, of course. What page are you seeing this statement on?

  17. hello,can you please correct the above error?
    You wrote ” If you are visiting one of the United Kingdom countries (England, Ireland or Scotland) …” The Republic of Ireland is not in the United Kingdom so like any country it has its own legal system which would also involve it’s own laws around bringing animals to Ireland . Thank you

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