Imports from non-EU countries

Imports from non-EU countries


In order to be subject to import into the Union, the following conditions must be met:

Authorised countries - dogs, cats and ferrets must come from territories or third countries listed in Commission Implementing Decision (EU) 2019/294 with reference to:

Registered establishments - dogs, cats and ferrets must come from holdings or businesses which are registered by the competent authority and are not subject to any ban on animal health grounds (including rabies), and which undertake to have these animals regularly examined, to notify possible disease and to comply with the requirements ensuring the welfare of the animals held (Directive 92/65/EEC).

Marking - dogs, cats and ferrets must be marked by the implantation of a transponder (see technical specifications in Annex II to Regulation (EU) No 576/2013).

Vaccination against rabies - dogs, cats and ferrets must be vaccinated against rabies by an authorised veterinarian in accordance with Annex III to Regulation (EU) No 576/2013, as follows:

  • the animal was at least 12 weeks old at the date the vaccine was administered
  • the date of administration of the vaccine does not precede the date of marking or reading of the transponder or tattoo
  • the period of validity of the vaccination starts not less than 21 days from the completion of the vaccination protocol for the primary vaccination, and any subsequent vaccination was carried out within the period of validity of the preceding vaccination

Rabies antibody test - dogs, cats and ferrets must undergo a rabies antibody titration test in accordance with Annex IV to Regulation (EU) No 576/2013, as follows:

  • the test must be carried out on a sample collected by an authorised veterinarian at least 30 days after the date of vaccination and not less than three months before the date of movement
  • the test must measure a level of neutralising antibody to rabies virus in serum equal to or greater than 0,5 IU/ml
  • the test must be performed in an approved laboratory

Parasite Echinococcus multilocularis - dogs must, prior to entering one of the Member States listed in the Annex to Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2018/878, as last amended by Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2020/2017, or United Kingdom (Northern Ireland) or Norway, be treated against the parasite Echinococcus multilocularis in accordance with Commission Delegated Regulation (EU) 2018/772, as follows:

  • the treatment must be administered by a veterinarian within a period of not more than 120 hours and not less than 24 hours before the time of scheduled entry
  • the treatment must be certified by the administering veterinarian in the relevant section of the passport

Clinical examination - dogs, cats and ferrets must undergo within 48 hours prior to the time of dispatch a clinical examination carried out by an authorised veterinarian, who must verify that the animals show no signs of diseases and are fit to be transported for the intended journey

Border Control Post - dogs, cats and ferrets must be accompanied to a Border Control Post (BCP) to which one working day notice has to be given, by an animal health certificate (see model in the Annex to Commission Implementing Decision (EU) 2019/294/EU completed and issued by an official veterinarian of the territory or third country of dispatch, who:

  • states the veterinary registration number assigned to the holding or business of origin by the competent authority
  • attests that the clinical examination was carried out
  • documents the alpha-numeric code displayed by the transponder or the tattoo, the details of vaccination against rabies, and where applicable, the details of the blood sampling and of the treatment against Echinococcus multilocularis .


  1. The use of the Community Trade Control and Expert System (TRACES) by the country of dispatch in order to issue the animal health certificate automatically pre-notifies the arrival at the BCP (number, nature and estimated time of arrival of the animals).

Common Health Entry Document - at the BCP the importer or his agent completes Part 1 of Common Health Entry Document (CHED), the official veterinarian completes Part 2 following the successful outcome of the identity, documentary and physical checks, then the entire CHED is issued by the official veterinarian. The identity, documentary, and physical checks are performed in accordance with the Official Controls Regulation 2017/625 and Delegated Regulation 2019/1602 supplementing Regulation (EU) 2017/625

Health certificate – Animal health certificate remains at the BCPs after official controls. CHED must accompany the animals to the place of destination.


Regarding the marking - EU countries shall authorise imports of dogs, cats and ferrets marked by a clearly readable tattoo if applied before 3 July 2011.

Regarding the purpose of the movement and the number of animals moved - Dogs, cats and ferrets moved for non-commercial purposes in a number of more than five may derogate from the aforementioned rules where:

  • their movement is for the purpose of participating in competitions, exhibitions or sporting events or in training for such event, and
  • the owner or authorised person submits written evidence that the animals are registered either to attend the event or with an association organising such events
  • the animals are more than six months old.

Regarding the vaccination against rabies:

  • Imports of young dogs, cats and ferrets not vaccinated against rabies are not allowed
  • Imports of dogs, cats or ferrets from territories or third countries listed in Annex II to Implementing Regulation (EU) No 577/2013 and destined for a body, institute or centre approved in accordance with Annex C to Directive 92/65/EEC may derogate from the anti-rabies vaccination requirements.

Regarding the rabies antibody titration test - The test is not required for dogs, cats or ferrets moved into an EU country from a territory or a third country listed in Annex II to Implementing Regulation (EU) No 577/2013, as last amended by Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2020/2017.