NetherlandsWorldwide

How do I take my pet to the Netherlands?

If you are travelling to the Netherlands with your pet, the steps you need to take depend on which kind of pet you are bringing and the country you are travelling from.

Choose your situation

If you are travelling with your dog or cat, the steps you need to take depend on the country from which you are travelling to the Netherlands. Check the list of EU countries and select your situation.

From an EU country

If you are travelling from an EU country to the Netherlands, you will need the following for your pet:

  • An EU pet passport. You can get this from your vet.
  • A vaccination against rabies. This must be recorded in the pet passport. You can get your pet vaccinated if it is 12 weeks or older. This must be done no later than 21 days before you travel. Rabies vaccinations are valid for 1 to 3 years, depending on the vaccine used. Ask your vet how long your vaccination is valid.
  • An ID chip. This must be placed before or on the same day as the rabies vaccination. The date on which your pet was chipped and the chip number must be stated in the pet passport.

If you will be staying in the Netherlands for more than 3 months, register your dog with a vet.

For more information on what you will need in your situation, please answer several questions and find out what you need for your dog or cat (NVWA) (information in Dutch).

From a non-EU country

If you are travelling from a non-EU country to the Netherlands, you will need the following for your pet:

  • An EU pet passport or valid veterinary certificate. You can get this from your vet.
  • A vaccination against rabies. This must be stated in the EU pet passport or on the veterinary certificate. You can get your pet vaccinated if it is 12 weeks or older. This must be done no later than 21 days before you travel. Rabies vaccinations are valid for 1 to 3 years, depending on the vaccine used. Ask your vet how long your vaccination is valid.
  • An ID chip. This must be placed before or on the same day as the rabies vaccination. The date on which your pet was chipped and the chip number must be stated in the pet passport or on the veterinary certificate.
  • A blood test. Find out which conditions the blood test needs to meet on the website of the NVWA. A blood test is not required if you are travelling from a country with a low risk of rabies.

For more information on what you will need in your situation, please answer several questions and find out what you need for your dog or cat (NVWA) (information in Dutch).

If you are transiting through the Netherlands to another EU country find out more about the rules that apply when transiting in the Netherlands on the website of the NVWA.

Submitting a customs declaration

You will need to submit a customs declaration if the following 3 conditions apply:

  • You have bought 1 or more pets outside the EU.
  • You are taking the pet or pets to the EU for the first time.
  • The pet or pets costs more than € 430.

If these conditions apply to you and you do not submit a customs declaration, customs may impose a fine. And you still have to submit a customs declaration.

If you are travelling with a different pet, the steps you need to take depend on the country from which you are travelling to the Netherlands. Check the list of EU countries and select your situation.

From an EU country

If you are travelling to the Netherlands from an EU country with your rabbit, rodent, bird, fish or reptile, you will not need an EU pet passport or rabies vaccination. Rabbits and guinea pigs do not need veterinary certificates. Other pets may need veterinary certificates from a vet. For example, birds, in the event of an outbreak of bird flu.

If you are travelling with a different pet, or are not sure whether you need a veterinary certificate, consult your vet or the NVWA customer service centre on 0900 0388.

From a non-EU country

If you are travelling to the Netherlands from a non-EU country with your rabbit, rodent, reptile or bird, check the website of the NVWA to find out which rules apply to you.

Find out more about the rules for taking rabbits, rodents or reptiles with you (NVWA) (information in Dutch)

Find out more about the rules for taking a bird with you (NVWA) (information in Dutch)

If you are transiting through the Netherlands to another EU country find out more about the rules that apply when transiting in the Netherlands on the website of the NVWA.

Submitting a customs declaration

You will need to submit a customs declaration if the following 3 conditions apply:

  • You have bought 1 or more pets outside the EU.
  • You are taking the pet or pets to the EU for the first time.
  • The pet or pets costs more than € 430.

If these conditions apply to you and you do not submit a customs declaration, customs may impose a fine. And you still have to submit a customs declaration.

Good to know

  • Follow the rules of all countries you are travelling to or through with your pet. If you are travelling to the Netherlands via another country, you must follow the rules set by that country.
  • If you do not follow the rules, your pet may be sent back, at your cost.
  • The same rules apply to service and assistance animals.
  • The rules apply to pets you own and will continue to own during your journey to and stay in the Netherlands. If your dog or cat will get a new owner in the Netherlands, find out which rules apply on the website of the NVWA (information in Dutch).
  • If you are travelling by air, check the rules of the airport and airline as well.

Contact

If you want to know whether you can take your pet into the Netherlands, you can call the Customs Information Line (DouaneTelefoon).

If you have a question about anything else, contact NetherlandsWorldwide.

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