Specific animal health requirements for movements within the Union of dogs, cats and ferrets are laid down in Commission Delegated Regulation (EU) 2020/688. Accordingly, the following conditions must be met:
Establishments - dogs, cats and ferrets must come from establishments registered by the competent authority. If the establishment of origin is a shelter or an assembly centre of dogs, cats and ferrets, it must be approved by the competent authority. In the establishment of origin, infection with rabies virus must not have been reported during the 30 day period prior to departure and there must not have been abnormal mortalities with an undetermined cause.
Traceability/Marking - dogs, cats and ferrets must be marked by the implantation of a transponder approved by the competent authority.
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
- 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.
Parasite Echinococcus multilocularis - dogs must, prior to entering one of the Member States or United Kingdom (Northern Ireland) listed in the Annex to Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2018/878, as last amended by Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2020/2017, or Norway, be treated against the parasite Echinococcus multilocularis in accordance with in accordance with Part 2(1) of Annex VII to Delegated Regulation (EU) 2020/688 , 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
Passport - dogs, cats and ferrets must be individually accompanied by a passport (see model in Part 1 of Annex III to Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) No 577/2013)
- completed and issued by an authorised veterinarian
- documenting the alpha-numeric code displayed by the transponder or the tattoo, the details of the vaccination against rabies, the details of the treatment against Echinococcus multilocularis, where applicable, and the clinical examination
Health certificate - dogs, cats and ferrets must be accompanied to the place of destination by a health certificate (model in chapter 61 of Annex I to Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2021/403, issued by an official veterinarian of the EU country of dispatch, who:
- states the registration or approval number assigned to the establishment of origin by the competent authority and the passport number of each animal of the consignment
- attests that the clinical examination was carried out
- notifies the movement to the competent authorities of destination through the Trade Control and Expert System (TRACES)).
Regarding the marking - EU countries shall authorise Intra EU movements of dogs, cats and ferrets marked by a clearly readable tattoo if applied before 3 July 2011.
Regarding the vaccination against rabies:
- EU countries may authorise Intra-EU movement of young dogs, cats and ferrets which are less than 12 weeks old and have not received an anti-rabies vaccination or are between 12 and 16 weeks old and have received an anti-rabies vaccination, but 21 days have not elapsed since the completion of the vaccination protocol for the primary vaccination against rabies carried out in accordance with the validity requirements set out in Annex III to Regulation (EU) No 576/2013.
- In that case, the animals must be accompanied by either:
- a declaration of the owner (see model set out in chapter 61 of Annex I to Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2021/403) attached to the health certificate stating that from birth until the time of dispatch, the animals have had no contact with wild animals of species susceptible to rabies, or
- their mother on whom they still depend and from the passport of their mother it can be established that the mother received before their birth an anti-rabies vaccination which complied with the validity requirements set out in Annex III to Regulation (EU) No 576/2013.
Regarding the treatment against the tapeworm Echinococcus multilocularis - Dogs moved directly between Member States, or United Kingdom (Northern Ireland), listed in the Annex to Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2018/878, as last amended by Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2020/2017, or Norway are exempted from the treatment against the tapeworm Echinococcus multilocularis.
Re-homing of pets
Guidance about the movements of pets sourced from shelters can be found in Working document SANTE/7160/2020rev2 “re-homing of pets: issues detected in trade”