These last days we have been asked several times about after-Brexit new regulation for travelling with pets from UK to EU and vice versa.
So far, we haven’t received any official notification at all. Veterinary College keeps every member updated about any kind of modification, not only in case of import-export laws, but every aspect we have to take into account for developing our profession legally (and there are thousands of aspects!).
In case Brexit becomes real, the most probable thing is pets import-export regulations will be similar to the Norwegian ones (Norway is an European but non-EU country). Which are the regulations for Norway? Surprise! Exactly the same which are valid nowadays for the UK.
As everybody knows, the requirements for taking a dog from Spain to the UK are: microchipping, valid rabies injection (minimum 3 weeks before travelling if it’s the first rabies, or if you let the previous one expire), and a worming treatment not earlier than 5 days and not later than 24 hours before the animal is crossing the border (or embarking when travelling by ferry). This is the British (and Norwegian) procedure.
What about returning to the EU? In case of Norway, since it’s free of rabies, the only requirements are rabies and microchip. UK is free of rabies as well (and, hopefully, it will continue like this after Brexit!), so, we sincerely don’t think you’ll be asked for extra requirements, since countries such as USA, Argentina or Russia, which are NOT free of rabies countries, are asked for any extra requirement for exporting pets to EU.
Which are those “extra” requirements? Quarantines and rabies antibodies titration. These requirements are still mandatory for importing dogs, cats and ferrets from, for example, African countries. As many people will remember, those quarantines and titrations were mandatory for taking dogs, cats and ferrets to the UK (NOT from UK to EU), before more simple and modern regulations were adopted some years ago.
We suppose pets travelling regulation will be the same (or very similar to the actual one). The worst case scenario would be returning to the old regulation with quarantines and rabies titrations.
Laws can be modified every time Parliaments consider it necessary, and no law lasts forever.
Anyway, what we recommend is to keep rabies injection valid (don’t let it expire), this will make all the procedure go faster in case you are asked for rabies blood test, since you are avoiding the quarantine. We also recommend you to look for info in official websites only, such as DEFRA or British Council. Don’t trust gossip! Fake news have gone too far (and produced a lot of damage), and there are people that would like to take an advantage from you by making you waste your money in unnecessary procedures.
If there is any companion pet import-export regulation which is going to change after Brexit, we promise we’ll let everybody know via an article, and that article will include, of course, a copy-and-paste from the mail we may eventually receive from our College.
Happy new year.
Liliana Aldeguer Cerdán col 793
English translation by Sergio Reina Esteban col 74