Italy Pet Passport & Import Regulations
Note that all Italian citizens needing to return to Italy from high-rabies countriesduring the COVID-19 crisis can email the Ministry of Health in Italy (firstname.lastname@example.org) for permission to bring their dog or cat without completing the rabies titer test (see step #3). Steps 1, 2 and 5 must be completed.
NOTICE: The EU Commission has classified the United Kingdom as a Part 2 Listed Third Country. (more information here on this classification) If you are planning to travel to Italy from the United Kingdom, a titer test will not be required; however, UK Pet Passports will not be accepted. A different health certificate will be required. See step #5.
There will be no quarantine imposed on your pet as long as the following requirements are met. Unless otherwise stated, the regulations below apply to domestic dogs, cats and ferrets including service and emotional support dogs and cats. Owners of other pets should refer to item 12.
The first step to prepare your dog, cat or ferret to enter Italy is to have your pet microchipped with an ISO 11784/11785 compliant 15 digit pet microchip.
If your pet currently has a microchip that is not ISO 11784/11785 compliant, then you have 3 choices:
- You can bring your own microchip scanner.
- You can contact the officials at the Border Inspection Post where you will enter the EU and inquire as to whether they have scanners that can read your pet's chip.
- If your pet's current microchip can still be read, your veterinarian can implant compliant chip. The number and implant dates of both microchips must be documented on the EU Health Certificate (see step #5).
A tattoo is an acceptable form of identification as long as it was given prior to July 3, 2011, is clearly visible and your pet was vaccinated for rabies after the tattoo was applied.
All dogs, cats and ferrets must have proof of a current rabies vaccination administered after a microchip was implanted to enter Italy.
The first rabies vaccination after the microchip is implanted is called the primary vaccination and it should be a one year vaccine unless manufacturer specifications permit its use as a primary vaccination. If your pet's previous rabies vaccination had expired before being revaccinated, the next vaccination becomes the primary vaccination.
All vaccinations that are administered after the primary vaccination are called booster vaccinations.
If your pet is entering Italy from a rabies-free (click here) or rabies-controlled country (click here), the primary rabies vaccination must be administered no sooner than 21 days before entering Italy.
There is no waiting period after booster vaccinations as long as:
- the previous vaccination was administered after a microchip was implanted AND
- the booster vaccination was administered before the previous vaccination had expired.
Italy does honor the 3 year rabies vaccination for dogs, cats and ferrets; however, it should only be administered as a booster, not as a primary vaccination. You can speak to your veterinarian about this.
Once your pet has entered Italy, a 21 day waiting period is not required for subsequent visits, provided rabies boosters are kept up to date, and the other entry requirements are met.
If your pet is entering Italy from a high-rabies country, it must wait for a minimum of 30 days after the primary or booster vaccination before receiving a rabies titer test (see step #3).
Rabies Titer Test
If your pet is entering Italy from a high-rabies country (click here), your pet must be microchipped, then vaccinated for rabies (in that order). After waiting 30 days, a rabies titer test (FAVN) must be administered. (Have your veterinarian scan your pet's microchip prior to the titer test.)
Samples must be processed at approved laboratories. Assuming test results are within acceptable limits, your pet can enter Italy no sooner than 3 calendar months after the date the blood was drawn and avoid quarantine. This step is not required unless entering Italy from a high-rabies country (click here).
Tapeworm Treatment - Dogs Only
A tapeworm treatment is not required when entering Italy from any country.
The type of health certificate required for your pet depends on whether or not your pet's transport is accompanied OR it involves a purchase, sale or transfer of ownership. Choose from two options below.
Non-Commercial Transport: the owner or a legal representative of the owner is traveling with or within 5 days of the pet AND the transport does not involve purchase, sale or transfer of ownership.
Non-Commercial Transport to Italy from a country outside of the EU:
Regulations in steps 1 and 2 apply. If entering Italy from a high-rabies country, step 3 applies as well.
A licensed veterinarian in the originating country must complete the non-commercial EU health certificate for Italy within 10 days of travel. If your pet is traveling from the United States, the veterinarian must be accredited by the USDA and the health certificate must be endorsed by the State USDA office unless the certificate is completed by a military Veterinary Corps Officer or GS-0701 series civilian government veterinarian employed by the military.
The CFIA must endorse forms issued by Canadian veterinarians.
If traveling to Italy from another country, then the forms must be endorsed by the government agency responsible for the import and export of animals.
This form is good for transports of 5 or less dogs, cats or ferrets. (see item 6 if you are traveling with more than 5 pets.) The form is good for 4 months of travel within the EU as long as the rabies vaccination documented on it does not expire.
Non-Commercial Transport to Italy from another EU Member State:
Regulations in steps 1 and 2 apply.
Have your veterinarian update an EU Pet Passport for your pet. An EU health certificate is not required for pets traveling to Italy from another EU Member State unless a rabies booster was administered by a veterinarian outside of the EU at any time after your pet received its microchip.
No matter what country you are entering Italy from, you or your representative must sign a Declaration of Non-Commercial Transport stating that your pet's transport does not involve the sale or transfer of ownership of your pet.
Commercial Transport: the owner or a legal representative of the owner is not traveling with or within 5 days of the pet OR the purpose of the transport involves a sale or transfer of ownership OR more than 5 dogs, cats or ferrets are traveling with or without their owner.
Commercial pet transport to Italy from a rabies-free or rabies-controlled country outside the EU:
Regulations in steps 1 and 2 apply. Step 3 does not apply.
A licensed veterinarian must complete the commercial EU health certificate for Italy within 48 hours of entry. If your pet is traveling from the United States or Canada, the veterinarian must be accredited by the USDA or CFIA respectively and the non-commercial EU health certificate must be endorsed by the local USDA (United States) or CFIA (Canada) office. This form is good for transports of 5 or less animals. (see item 6 for transports of more than 5 pets.)
Your pet must enter through an approved Border Inspection Post. Notice must be given 24 hours prior to arrival.
All dogs must be vaccinated against distemper.
Commercial Transport to Italy from high-rabies countries outside the EU:
Dogs, cats and ferrets can only enter Italy from these high-rabies countries. Pets must conform to all rules above and also have a titer test according to step 3 above.
Commercial pet transport to Italy from another EU Member State:
Regulations in steps 1 and 2 apply.
Your pet must travel from a licensed premises which is registered with the governing authority in your EU country responsible for the import and export of animals.
Your veterinarian must obtain and update an EU Pet Passport for your pet.
Your pet's veterinarian must issue an Intratrade health certificate completed within 48 hours of entry.
Your pet's transport must be entered into the TRACES system.
Traveling with more than 5 pets
If you are traveling with 6 or more cats, dogs or ferrets, in order to transport them under non-commercial regulations, they must be 6 months or older and attending or training for a competition, show or sporting event. If this is not the case, your pets must meet the requirements for commercial transport. (see step #5)
Entering Italy from Malaysia & Australia
If your pet is entering Italy from peninsular Malaysia, the following conditions must be met:
1. Your pet has had no contact with pigs during at least the past 60 days prior to export.
2. Your pet has not lived in a place where cases of Nipah disease have been confirmed during the past 60 days.
3. Your pet has been tested with negative a result to an IgG capture ELISA test carried out in a laboratory approved for testing for Nipah disease viruses within 10 days of export.
Cats may only enter Italy from Australia under the condition that they have not lived in areas where cases of Hendra disease have been confirmed during the past 60 days.
Entering Italy by Air or Sea
Unaccompanied pets or those entering Italy from a non-EU Member State or Andorra, Switzerland, Faroe Islands, Gibraltar, Greenland, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Monaco, Norway, San Marino, or Vatican City State must enter Italy by air at international airports in Bologna, Milan, Pisa, Turin or Rome. Pets traveling with their owners or designated representatives can enter at Venice.
Pets should enter Italy directly or transit through another EU Member State. If your pet transits through a high-rabies country, then a Transit Declaration will be required stating that your pet has had no contact with rabies-carrying animals and remained secured within the airplane or airport.
All dogs, cats and ferrets entering Italy by sea can do so at the following ports: Bari, Genoa, Livorno, Naples, Salerno, Gioia Tauro, Trapani, Ravenna, La Specia, Trieste and Venice.
All domestic dogs and cats must be free of evidence of disease communicable to humans when examined at the port of entry to Italy. If your pet is not in apparent good health, further examination by a licensed veterinarian may be required at your expense.
Puppies and Kittens
Non-vaccinated puppies, kittens and ferrets are not permitted to enter Italy from any country or EU Member State. Rabies vaccinations must not be administered prior to 12 weeks of age. The youngest age a puppy or kitten can enter Italy is 3 months and 22 days.
Italy restricts the import of the following breeds: Rottweiler, Doberman Pinscher (Venice only). All aggressive breeds must be conducted in public places compulsorily or with a leash or with a muzzle while in public places and means of transport it is mandatory the use of a leash and muzzle.
Exporting Cats and Dogs from Italy
All dogs, cats and ferrets leaving Italy must be microchipped, vaccinated for rabies (in that order) and wait 21 days before leaving Italy. If you are planning to take your pet on a trip to a high-rabies country, your veterinarian should do a Blood Titer Test before you leave Italy if you intend to return.
Birds, (small birds with the exception of parrots, see below), dogs, cats, fish (small), common frogs, common reptiles, rodents, rabbits, common lizards and green lizards, sugar gliders and small turtles may be imported to Italy from another EU or rabies-controlled country if the following conditions are met:
- Not more than 5 animals accompanied by their owner
- Animals are transported in a compliant pet carrier that ensures their safety.
- Animals will be accompanied by an international health certificate issued by a licensed veterinarian within 48 hours of entry. The certificate must include: description of the animal, the animal's owner and source and destination address.
Bird owners or their representative are permitted to enter Italy from OIE member countries countries with their birds under the following conditions:
- Application for a Licence to Import Pet Birds, health certificate and Owner's Declaration must accompany your bird.
- Your bird must reside in an OIE member country.
- You are not importing more than 5 birds.
- Your bird must have undergone isolation for 30 days prior to export OR
- Two vaccinations against avian influenza with the H5 vaccine between 60 days and 6 months of import OR
- 10 days of isolation and undergone a test to detect the H5N1antigen or genome OR
- 30 days of quarantine in a registered premesis in the United Kingdom or other EU countries.
- All permits must accompany birds that are covered by CITES.
- Export permits may be required by the wildlife authority in the exporting country.
Pet birds may enter Italy only at Milan Malpensa Airport or Rome Fiumicino Airports. Notice must be given in advance of arrival. Up to 5 birds are permitted as long as they are accompanied by a sanitary certificate.
Pet owners of other animals are strongly advised to seek further information from the relevant authority of their country and/or that of the country of destination.
If your pet is not a dog, cat or ferret, and especially if it is a turtle or parrot, you should verify that it is not protected under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES). You will need to apply for additional permits if this is the case. Over 180 countries participate and enforce CITES regulations. .
Need More Assistance?
To the best of our ability, we ensure that recommendations given on PetTravel.com reflect the current regulations. We cannot predict how a given country may enforce these regulations. Noncompliance may result in the need to make arrangements to put your pet into quarantine at your expense, return your pet to the country of origin, or euthanize your pet. We suggest that you minimize the disruptions that may occur by following the rules of the country you are visiting.
Further detail on import permits, costs, tests and procedures are available at minimal cost at PetTravelStore.com. We also stock all the equipment and accessories you will need for traveling with your pet. Same day shipping Monday through Friday until 4:00 PM EST.
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