Taking your pet on holiday to France

Written by on May 21, 2012 in Pets And Animals

taking your pet on holiday to FrancePets going to France on a temporary basis from the UK

If you’re taking your pet on holiday and will be returning to the UK (temporary basis classification) you’ll need to take the following actions to confirm with UK regulations.

it is important that the requirements are carried out in the order specified as if you get the animal vaccinated before you have the ID resolved you will have to re-vaccinate. These requirements are also necessary for guide and hearing dogs:

1.  Identification of your animal: microchip under the skin only, as British authorities do not accept identification by tattoo.

2. A valid vaccination against rabies (first vaccination and boosters). Animals must be at least 3 months old before being vaccinated.  Only rabies vaccinations given after the microchip are acceptable – treatments prior to the microchip don’t count.

Rabies boosters have to be kept up to date. You need to wait 21 days after the first vaccination date before re-entering the UK but subsequent entries to the UK have no waiting period provided rabies boosters are kept up to date. If the vaccination is in two parts the 21 day wait will be after the date of the second vaccination.

3. An EU pet passport issued by a Government-approved vet (check with your vet that he/she is covered to issue the required document).

4. From 1st January 2012 the rule concerning tapeworm treatment has been applied to dogs only.  Before a dog can enter the UK it must have tapeworm treatment to be carried out not less than 25 hours and not more than 120 hours before the planned time of arrival in the UK.   The details of the treatment must be recorded on an official certificate of treatment or in the pet passport by the vet who has carried out the treatment.  If you’re on holiday and not sure how to find a vet in your locality you can ask at the local tourist office or town hall or check the Pages Jaunes online for a local vétérinaire.  There is no mandatory requirement for tick treatment for cats and dogs.

Approved routes

The UK Government requires that pets travelling into the UK must be transported using only approved routes. The French authorities do not apply restrictions on routes of transport of pets between the UK and France. The use of private means of transport is allowed.

Routes approved for transport from France to the UK are listed on the DEFRA website.  Eurotunnel, P&O ferries and various other ferry companies all accommodate pet transport requirements.

For more information on travelling with pets from the UK to France see our section on taking an animal to France.

Important information when taking your pet on holiday to France

Dangerous Dogs

Make sure that your pet dog doesn’t fall into the category of dangerous dogs in France – certain breeds are not allowed into France without a licence, check our update on the dangerous dogs rules in France.

Pet medication

If your pet has a requirement for medication ensure you don’t fall foul of the rules – follow the recommended guidelines and make sure your pet has the medication he or she needs and that you don’t have the medicine confiscated with – check our section on carrying veterinary prescribed medications to France.


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