Bringing Pets To: Portugal



Moving to Portugal with pets? Our team of experts is here to assist you and ensure that this aspect of your relocation is as stress-free as possible, allowing you to concentrate on the human side of your move. Learn more about the ins and outs of taking pets to Portugal so you can be prepared for your upcoming move!

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What to Know Before Transporting Dogs and Cats to Portugal

Portugal Import Requirements and Timeline

A checklist with checkmarks on it

Microchip and Vaccinations

One of the most important considerations for pet travel to Portugal is ensuring your pet is properly microchipped and has the required vaccinations. These are a priority when moving to Portugal with pets.

Time frame: we recommend starting at least 30 days ahead

If you’re taking pets to Portugal, it's important to note that they must be microchipped and vaccinated in accordance with Portugal's regulations. To help you prepare, we've outlined the specific details and requirements below.

How to start the process of transporting your pet to Portugal

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. Portugal currently accepts AVID 9 and AVID 10 in addition to ISO.

The microchip must be implanted before the rabies vaccine is administered.

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 and endorsement.

Further details regarding the rabies vaccine:

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

Other recommended vaccines include:

  • Dogs: Distemper, Hepatitis, Leptospirosis, Parainfluenza and Parvovirus (DHLPP) and Bordetella.
  • Cats: Feline Viral Rhinotracheitis, Calicivirus and Panleukopenia (FVRCP).

While not a requirement, these vaccines can help keep your dog or cat healthy before, during and after moving your pets to Portugal.

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

Import Documentation

Pet transport to Portugal also requires a lot of important documentation. Ensuring you have the necessary forms and they’re filled out correctly can help your pet's travel to Portugal go as smoothly as possible.

Time frame: Within 10 days prior to departure (non-commercial)

At this stage, we provide detailed templates for your veterinarian and answer any questions regarding the proper completion of all forms.

Proper paperwork prevents hangups at customs

EU Health Certificate

This will be provided by your dedicated relocation coordinator. 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, 

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 the 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 time frame for this changes within the context of a commercial move. Please read below for more information on the 5-day rule and commercial move requirements.

The 5-Day Rule (and more)

More important information to keep your move on track.

Before you transport your dog or cat to Portugal, make sure you're aware of regulations unique to the EU!

What to know about commercial moves and breed bans

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.

If you are unable to fly within 5 days of your pets, you will need to meet stricter import requirements. Contact your relocation coordinator to discuss commercial moves.

Restricted breeds in Portugal

Not all dog breeds are allowed in this country. You may not be able to bring your pet if they are one of the following breeds (or a mix of one):

  • Pit Bull Terrier
  • American Staffordshire Terrier
  • Dogo Argentino
  • Staffordshire Bull Terrier
  • Rottweiler
  • Tosa Inu

Before moving to Portugal with a dog, make sure you know their breeds in addition to when they’ll be able to travel.

Unlisted Countries and additional requirements

Are you coming from an "unlisted country"? If so, your pet will need a rabies antibody test, known as a titer. In this case, you must follow the below steps:

  • Microchip and rabies vaccination (at least 30 days old prior to blood draw)
  • Rabies antibody test performed by an accredited veterinarian and sent to an EU-approved laboratory
  • You must wait 90 days after the blood draw (assuming a passing result) before completing export paperwork

Find out if your origin country is listed here

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