Ireland information: bringing your pet to Ireland

County Sligo

The importation of pets into Ireland is tightly controlled. Find out more about how to bring your pet with you on your visit

A place for pets

Bringing your pets on holiday with you is fun – they’re part of the family after all. Some hotels, guest houses and B&Bs happily accommodate pets: the five-star Hayfield Manor in Cork even has matching dog kennels. B&B Ireland has over 150 members who accept pets into their homes and many self-catering properties are now pet-friendly. 

For the enthusiastic dog owner, the possibilities for walks are endless on the island – just remember to keep your pet on a leash at all times. During the summer months some country fairs and festivals hold dog shows, cat shows and pet races. So if you’re particularly proud of your pets, why not see if they can bring home a prize?

Bringing your pets into the Republic of Ireland

Entry requirements for bringing your pets to the Republic of Ireland will depend on what country your pets are coming from, and their country of origin.

From within the EU

For example, if you're coming from the EU and want to bring a pet with you to Ireland, you’re going to need an EU Pet Passport. This document proves your pet has been microchipped and vaccinated against rabies.

Only airlines registered with the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine can transport pets. Each ferry operator has differing rules on travelling with animals, but pets must travel with their owner (or with a person acting on behalf of the owner) while on a ferry.

From outside the EU

If you want to bring your pet to Ireland from a country outside the EU you must first check whether your country is designated as low risk or high risk.

Pets from a low-risk country outside of the EU:

  • Must be microchipped (this must be done before anything else)
  • Must be subsequently vaccinated for rabies
  • Must have a veterinary certificate issued by the correct authority in the country of origin
  • Dogs must be treated for tapeworm between 24 and 120 hours before travel, and the time and date of treatment must be entered on the passport.

Pets from a high-risk country outside of the EU:

A pet coming from a high-risk country must do all of the above and also have a blood test after the rabies vaccination at least three months before entry. The animal must be transported by air to Ireland on an approved airline. 

Alternatively, owners can apply to the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine for a prior approval. Entry by airline is through Dublin airport only, where your pet will be inspected in the quarantine facility.

Bringing your pets into Northern Ireland

The Pet Travel Scheme (PETS) allows dogs, cats, ferrets, domestic rabbits and rodents from certain countries to enter Northern Ireland without quarantine – so long as they meet certain criteria. The scheme only applies to pets coming into the UK from a set number of countries and territories.

Pets travelling from the Republic of Ireland to Northern Ireland should be microchipped, vaccinated against rabies and accompanied by a pet passport.

Pets entering Northern Ireland from non-qualifying countries must spend six months in quarantine on arrival. 

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