How to Get an EU Pet Passport for Your Dog or Cat in France


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How to Get an EU Pet Passport for Your Dog or Cat in France

If you are a pet owner in France, your pet is entitled to an EU pet passport. This document serves not only as your pet’s health and vaccination record, but it will enable you to travel hassle-free between countries of the EU, as well as the UK.

To Obtain an EU Pet Passport, Your Pet Must Be:

  • Microchipped with an ISO standard microchip, prior to rabies vaccination (tattoos carried out before July 3, 2011, are also accepted, providing that it remains clearly legible)
  • Vaccinated against rabies with an approved vaccine (Note that your pet must be microchipped before being vaccinated).

The passport is activated for travel 21 days after the rabies vaccine has been administered and remains active as long as the vaccines are kept up to date.

Pet passports cost €15 and is issued by your French vet. Note that while an EU Pet Passport is required for your pet to travel within the EU and to the UK, it is not obligatory if you don’t intend to travel with your pet.

Importing a Dog or Cat to France: Registering for an EU Pet Passport

If you move to France with your pet from a non-EU country such as the UK or the US, your pet will also be able to obtain an EU passport, providing they meet the requirements. This also applies to pets who have a UK-EU Pet Passport issued before January 1st, 2021 (Brexit) – these passports are now invalid for travel, although they are still permitted as proof of vaccination (see the official word on this here).

Your pet must be:

  • Microchipped with an ISO standard microchip, prior to rabies vaccination (tattoos carried out before July 3, 2011, are also accepted, providing that it remains clearly legible)
  • Vaccinated against rabies with an approved vaccine (Note that your pet must be microchipped before being vaccinated).
  • Registered on the Fichier national d’identification des carnivores domestiques(I-CAD) (France’s national pet register).

Pet passports are issued by your French vet, who is responsible for checking the animal’s registration with I-CAD and vaccination record.

Registering your pet with I-CAD

In order for a pet of non-EU origins to enter the French system and receive a French EU Pet Passport, the pet must be registered in the Fichier national d’identification des carnivores domestiques (I-CAD) (France’s national pet register). This registration can be done by a vet, but only if the animal is staying in France longer than three consecutive months. The official rules state that a dog or cat must be registered with the I-CAD within eight days of arriving in France (if you are importing the dog to France – this isn’t required for travel and short-stay purposes), so it’s a good idea to book your vet appointment as soon as possible if you are looking to stay.

You will need to present the same documentation required for moving to France with your pet to your vet, so make sure you keep hold of all the relevant documents, including your Rabies antibody titration test (if required). You should also bring with you proof of your residence in France or intention to stay in the country for longer than three months (for example, your long-stay visa or carte de sejour).

Your vet will fill in the provisional certificate of identification during import or intra-Community trade form, and you will need to pay the registration fee of €9.23 to ICAD.

*IMPORTANT* Your pet’s previous vaccinations will not be listed on their new EU Pet Passport, so it is important that you hold on to their vaccine card or UK Pet Passport (if applicable). Remember that you MUST present proof of rabies vaccination for travel, so if your pet’s current rabies vaccination is not listed in their new Pet Passport, you will need to present both documents at the border.

See the official rules for bringing a dog or cat from abroad into France here.

Validity of Your Pet’s EU Passport

Your pet passport has an expiry date, which is linked to the rabies vaccination. If the date of rabies vaccination is missed – even by one day – then the pet passport is invalidated and only becomes active three weeks after the rabies revaccination date.

Travelling to the UK with an EU Pet Passport After Brexit

Post-Brexit, the Pet Travel Scheme (PETS) is still valid for travel to the UK. Pets with a valid EU pet passport can enter the UK without passing through quarantine, provided the following requirements are met.

  • Cats and ferrets can return to the UK with no veterinary treatment or health check.
  • Dogs can enter the UK provided that 24-120 hours (1-5 days) prior to check-in for the return journey, a vet treats your pet against tapeworm (with a product containing praziquantel), signing and stamping the passport appropriately.
  • Your pet must not have been outside any of the qualifying PETS countries in the three months before it enters the UK. If it has then other regulations apply – see the defra website for details.

When Travelling to the UK, you must:

  • Confirm the identity of your pet by scanning with a microchip reader.
  • Present a valid EU pet passport, showing that your pet has successfully been vaccinated for rabies, including any relevant boosters.
  • Present proof of treatment for tapeworm issued within 24 hours and 120 hours (five days) of travel. If you do not have the correct documentation or the 24-120 hour limit is not respected, your pet will not be allowed back into the UK without going through quarantine or re-treating against tapeworm.

UK Pet Passports After Brexit

While pets living in the EU may still use an EU Pet Passport to enter the UK after Brexit, UK pets are now no longer able to use the Pet Passport Scheme. This means that UK-issued Pet Passports are no longer valid, and vets in the UK can no longer issue EU Pet Passports. Read our guide to Travelling to France with Your Pet Post-Brexit for more on this.

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  •  kayi
    2023-09-19 03:07:34
    Hi I will be visiting Paris and want to get a EU passport for my dog as I will be traveling a lot with him from the US to Europe do I have to be a local resident to get it as I asked other countries within the EU and they all need to be local resident in order to get it I'm just a visitor from the US


  •  Lee overton
    2023-04-19 05:51:38
    Lee overton
    Hi my wife will bring her dogs from Russia to France and then to uk , she will live with me in Uk. How does she get eu pet passport in France


    • Zoë Smith
      2023-04-19 21:10:12
      Zoë Smith
      Hi Lee, If your dog is living in the UK, I'm afraid he/she will not be eligible for an EU Pet Passport. Best regards, Zoe


  • mkmb2006
    2016-01-14 21:35:17
    How do I find out about bringing my pet from the US to France?


    • Sylvia Davis
      2016-01-15 08:42:32
      Sylvia Davis
      Hi Mkmb2006, thanks for your question. Here is a link to the information currently offered by the French Embassy in the US, listing the requirements to bring your pet to France: Hope that helps!