Can I travel to Italy with my pet?

Oct 18, 2022

The answer is YES, but under certain conditions.

Traveling with pets may not be a simple step, especially if it is the first time.

Preliminary requirements

  • You can travel to Italy with your pet only if he/she is a dog, a cat, or a ferret. This means that not all pets can travel to Italy under the rules specified in this article. (It may be possible to travel with other animals, however in such case, other rules may apply)
  • You are the owner of your pet, or your pet is traveling with an authorized person designated by the owner to travel with your pet. 

Attention! Even though there are no legal impediments, some airlines do not accept some specific breeds to be on board. This is because, during air travel, it could become difficult for these dogs to breathe, and be dangerous to their health. (such breeds can be, for example, Affenpinscher, Bulldogs, Shih-Tzu, Pug, Pekingese, etc.)

If you are traveling with an animal to be sold or transferred to another owner, including adoptions, the rules indicated in this article will not apply. For such cases, please refer to the procedures relating to commercial movements. 

Traveling to Italy with your pet

1. The general conditions required for all dogs, cats, and ferrets without distinction of the country of origin (departure)

  • They must have a microchip (or tattoo when applied before 3 July 2011) that identifies them.
  • Your pet shall be more than 12 weeks old
  • Your pet shall be vaccinated against rabies, and he/she shall complete the period of vaccination protocol (the min. period is 21 days after vaccination)
  • You should travel within the validity of the period of protective immunity of the vaccine. 
  • You can travel to Italy with your pets. However, the maximum number of pets allowed is five.

2. Specific Requirements when Traveling with your pet to Italy from a Member State.

  • Your pet must have a European Passport: To obtain a European Passport for your pet, you should contact your local/regional competent authorities and/or Veterinary Services
  • A written and duelly signed declaration of the pet owner: In case your pet is traveling with an authorized person

The above requirements apply for animals coming also from Andorra, Switzerland, Faeroe Islands, Gibraltar, Greenland, Island, Liechtenstein, Monaco, Norway, San Marino, and the Vatican City State. 

3. Specific Requirements when Traveling with your pet to Italy from a Third Country

In addition to the general requirements, different rules may apply depending on the specific third county. The requirements are often updated, so it is important to check the latest information.

Tips when traveling with your pet to Italy

  • Make your research in advance: The applicable rules to your specific case may vary, as it will depend on, for example, the country of origin, the countries you will transit to, and the type and age of your pet.  In some cases, the required procedures can take even months. 
  • Don’t focus only on EU and National Regulations: It is highly important to also check the rules that the airlines apply.
  • Contact the Italian Embassy or Consulate to ask for more information: They might help providing specific information that applies to your case.
  • Ask a veterinarian – Check your dog’s health: Traveling by airline can be a traumatic experience for your pet. It is advisable to ask a professional whether your pet is in good health to travel (including possible anxiety issues). 

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