With travelers taking less frequent but much more extended trips, airlines and hotels are making it much easier to bring man’s best friend along for the journey. Traveling with your pet isn’t difficult, but there can be many hoops to jump through, including pre-travel vet appointments, applying for a pet passport, and knowing airline size and weight restrictions. We’re here to help you navigate every step along the way. An excellent place to start is knowing the regulations specific to your destination, and we’ve compiled a list of popular places to get you started!
Traveling to Italy with a pet can be done in one of two ways. First, travelers can apply for an EU Pet Passport, which allows them to freely travel throughout the EU (save for additional entry requirements in Ireland, Finland, Malta, and Norway). Suppose your pet doesn’t have a passport. In that case, other requirements include identification with a microchip, rabies vaccination and mandatory waiting period, and a co-signature with a USDA Accredited Veterinarian and your USDA APHIS Veterinary Services Endorsement Office. Passports require updating when your pet receives a new vaccine, and a health certificate is valid for four months from the date of issue.
Bringing your dog or cat to Mexico is relatively easy. There is no longer a health certificate requirement. Instead, travelers are required to visit the Mexican Animal and Plant Health Inspection Office to have their pets examined with personnel working with SENASICA to make sure they are in good health. Additionally, if you frequently travel between the U.S. and Mexico with your dog, you can request to register for the Frequent Traveler Pet Program.
In the Caribbean each island tends to have its own regulations. The Dominican Republic, for example, requires a similar health certificate as pets entering Italy without a passport. The form is valid for ten days after issuance. It requires a co-signature with a USDA Accredited Veterinarian and your USDA APHIS Veterinary Services Endorsement Office, in addition to a rabies vaccine. The best way to check the specific entry requirements is by visiting the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service area on the USDA’s website and selecting your destination.