Just as UK travellers will be issued with Britain’s new blue passports from now on (don’t worry, you don’t have to change your passport after Brexit unless it’s up for renewal), Britain’s pet population will also have to give up their EU stars. Pet owners will no longer be able to use the EU’s handy pet passport system – instead, there are new rules to follow if you want to bring Fido to France.
No More Pet Passports for British Pets
With the UK’s Withdrawal Agreement with the EU now in effect, from 1 January, 2021, pet passports are no longer valid for dogs, cats, and other animals registered in Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
There’s no need to panic about organizing a dog-sitter or having to leave your beloved furry friends behind, though. Pets will still be able to travel to France after Brexit, as well as to other countries in the European Union and Schengen Area, and they won’t be subject to lengthy quarantines and strict health regulations as they once did before.
However, the process will require a little more paperwork…
New Rules for Bringing Your Dog To France After Brexit
If you are planning to bring your dog, cat, or other pets on your French holiday:
- Your pet must be microchipped
- Your pet must be vaccinated against rabies
- You must obtain an animal health certificate (AHC) for your pet, within 10 days prior to travel
Other requirements include a tapeworm treatment for dogs travelling to countries including Ireland and Northern Ireland, but this is not currently required for pets travelling to France.
On arrival, the entrance process is likely to be similar to before. You will be asked to present the above documents and scan your pet’s microchip.
What is an Animal Health Certificate?
Animal health certificates (AHC) can be issued by any vet in the country you are travelling from. They must be issued within 10 days of travelling and are valid for four months from the date of issue. In the UK, you should expect to pay around £100 for an AHC – fees may vary, so check with your vet.
Each AHC is valid for one trip to the EU, so if you’re a second-home owner in France, you will need to do this every time you visit if you want to bring your pets along. The good news is that a single AHC is valid for onward travel in the EU and your return travel to the UK (as long as it’s within the stipulated four months).
Bringing Dogs and Other Pets From France to England
If you’re a Brit living in France after Brexit, you will still be able to bring your pets with you on your UK visits. Pet passports will remain valid for pets registered in the EU for entry into the UK. However, if your pet currently has a pet passport issued in the UK, you will need to change this for a French pet passport instead. Your vet should be able to do this for you.
Check the EU travel regulations for the latest on pet travel to the UK.
Keep checking this page for the latest news on travel with pets in France after Brexit or head to our Brexit zone to learn more about living, travelling, and buying property in France from now on.