Moving to Germany with Pets

Are you interested in importing pets to Germany? As with all pet travel, your best bet is to give yourself plenty of time to plan for the trip. Before bringing pets to Germany you will need to ensure they have a microchip implanted for identification purposes, an up-to-date rabies vaccination, and an EU health certificate prepared by an accredited veterinarian.

German authorities also request that dogs have full vaccinations prior to entry, including Distemper, Parainfluenza, Bordetella, and others.

To make the process of shipping pets to Germany as easy as possible, prepare them in advance by helping them get used to the travel crate. This can help ease their anxiousness when the time for relocation comes.

Find more information on the requirements to import a dog to Germany below, and let your PetRelocation Specialists guide you every step of the way.

Relocation Info According to Species

Regulations for Importing Pets to Germany

Attention: This information should be used as general guidelines and may not be updated to meet the current requirements. Before you travel, be sure to contact the appropriate authorities for your destination country.

Microchip

Each pet shall be identified by means of a microchip. No other form of identification is acceptable. The microchip used should comply with ISO Standard 11784 or Annex A to ISO standard 11785. Germany currently accepts AVID 9 and AVID 10 in addition to ISO. The microchip must be implanted before the rabies vaccine is administered.


Rabies Vaccination and Certificate

All pets must have an original Rabies Certificate signed by the vet. The Rabies vaccine must be at least 21 days old at the time of the final health exam.

Further details regarding the rabies vaccine:

  • Pets may travel to Germany with a current one year vaccine (also known as a “primary” vaccine).
  • Pets may travel to Germany with a 3 year vaccine that was administered less than a year ago (otherwise it may be considered a booster).

If you have questions about this, please ask your PetRelocation Specialist about possible exceptions.

Additional Vaccines

It is suggested that all pets have full vaccinations, as well:

Dogs: Distemper, Hepatitis, Leptospirosis, Parainfluenza and Parvovirus (DHLPP) and Bordetella.

Cats: Feline Viral Rhinotracheitis, Calicivirus and Panleukopenia (FVRCP).

These should be valid at the time of import and administered no less than two weeks before export date for maximum effectiveness.

EU Health Certificate

This will be provided by your PetRelocation Specialist. This is the standard Health Certificate to be filled out by your accredited veterinarian and must be signed in a different color than that of the certificate's printing (usually blue ink). This certificate is valid for 10 days from the date of issue by the official veterinarian until the date of the checks at the EU point of entry. For the purpose of further movements within the EU, this certificate will be valid for a total of 4 months from the date of issue or until the date of expiration of the rabies vaccination, whichever date is earlier.

USDA Endorsements

The forms below must be sent to your local USDA for their stamp of approval. Please contact your PetRelocation Specialist to learn more about best way of managing this.

  • Microchip Implantation Record
  • Rabies Certificate
  • EU Vet Health Certificate

Airline Health Certificate

Your vet should have these in stock. It’s a good idea to call ahead and ask. This is an international health certificate that needs to be completed by your vet within 10 days of departure.
 

The EU 5-Day Rule

In order for pets to fly “non-commercially,” they must fly within five days of their owner. If you are unable to meet this 5-Day Rule, the move can still be carried out but it will be considered a commercial move, which increases costs and changes the EU import requirements and timeline.

Please check with your PetRelocation Specialist if you have questions about the EU 5-Day Rule and how to make your pet move as smooth as possible.

Additional Details

All original documentation listed above must travel with the pets.

In order for us to successfully clear customs we will need the following documents supplied prior to the pet’s arrival:

  • Copy of pet owner's passport
  • A signed letter of transfer from your company on letterhead
  • A copy of your plane/e-ticket/boarding pass showing your arrival within 5 days of your pet
  • If this is a military move: move orders, APO address, rank and office

Pet Travel Stories

“The cats ended up arriving home half an hour before I did! They were just fine, and maybe it was a little easier. They weren't afraid to come out of their crates and generally seemed as if it was just another day.”

— Nicole

Cat Travel Story: Chloe and Charlie Return to the US

From Our Blog

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