Admission of pets from abroad
What do you need to know?
It is a procedure handled by the Government of Catalonia Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (EU animals) and the Spanish Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (non-EU animals) to obtain the certificates and requirements necessary for pets to enter Spain.
Animals can travel in a separate means of transport from their owner within no more than five days of travel of the owner or person responsible for them.
Who does it apply to?
- If you are an EU citizen, you can check the official page for the formality on the Government of Catalonia Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries and Food website (available in English, Catalan and Spanish).
- If you are a non-EU citizen, you can check the official page for the formality on the Spanish Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food website (available in Catalan, Spanish and Spain’s other co-official languages).
In Spain, pets are understood to be dogs, cats, ferrets and domestic birds that are not farm birds.
These animals must not be travelling for commercial purposes and must be with their owner or an authorised person, who will be responsible for them during the journey.
A maximum of five animals is allowed per person and non-vaccinated animals are not allowed to enter.
Entry requirements vary depending on whether the animal comes from an EU member country or not.
If all the requirements are not complied with, the animal may be held in quarantine, or returned to its country of origin, or even, as a last resort, put down.
What is the purpose of this authorisation?
The purpose of this authorisation is to prevent the spread of potentially contagious diseases and ensure the protection of human and animal health.
What does this formality cost?
This formality is free of charge.
How is it processed?
What are the entry requirements for domestic animals from abroad?
Common requirements to be considered a pet
These are general requirements that may vary depending on the animal being transported and on its age, medical history and country of origin. You are advised to consult the country of origin's consulate or diplomatic mission directly.
- They may not be taken to Spain for a commercial purpose, nor to transfer ownership.
- A maximum of five animals can be brought, all accompanied by the owner or person responsible for them.
- All animals must be vaccinated and comply with applicable healthcare requirements, all evidenced by the respective supporting documents.
- These requirements vary depending on whether the animal comes from an EU member country or not.
General health requirements for cats, dogs and ferrets
- They must be identified by a tattoo (done prior to 3/7/2011) or a microchip.
- They must be over 3 months of age, or 7 months if coming from a non-EU country where rabies is present or a risk.
- They must have had the rabies vaccination.
- If it is the first time the animal has been vaccinated, you must wait 21 days before being able to travel.
- If you are coming from a country that is not included in Annex II to Regulation (EU) 577/2013:
- A test must be carried out for rabies antibodies.
- A blood test for rabies must be carried out in an authorised laboratory.
- If you have a European pet passport, it must be stamped and signed by a vet.
- If you do not have a European pet passport:
- You must have an animal health certificate filled in according to the European Union form. This document must be obtained in the country of origin and must be signed by a vet and submitted, at a minimum, in Spanish.
- Have a certified copy of the animals’ identification and vaccination details.
Specific healthcare requirements for animals from an EU member state
- The animal must be over 3 months old.
- It must have an INTRA-2 form veterinary certificate drawn up, at a minimum, in Spanish and issued within the last ten days.
- You must have an animal health certificate filled in according to the European Union form, signed by a vet and submitted, at a minimum, in Spanish.
- In the specific case of pet birds, one of the four options set out in the veterinary certificate must be complied with:
- Prior to import, they must be in isolation under official control in the country of origin for at least 30 days.
- After import, they must be in quarantine for 30 days at authorised facilities.
- They must have been vaccinated in the last six months and not later than 60 days prior to travel. They must have been re-vaccinated against bird flu at least once.
- At least during the 10 days prior to export, they must have been isolated and given a test to detect the H5N1 bird flu antigen or genome, carried out with a sample collected not before the third day of isolation.
Where is it processed?
The procedure is carried out in person:
- Animals from EU countries: Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries and Food (Generalitat de Catalunya-Government of Catalonia).
- Animals from non-EU countries: Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (Government of Spain).
What steps must you follow?
Before travelling to Spain
- You are advised to consult a vet and the country of origin’s consulate or diplomatic mission before you travel to Spanish territory allowing a sufficient amount of time:
- If you come from an EU member state, a minimum of two months prior to travelling.
- If you are travelling from outside the EU, it is advisable to do so earlier.
- You must ensure that the animal meets all requirements, otherwise it may be held in quarantine, or returned to its country of origin, or even, as a last resort, put down.
- If you wish to travel with a specific animal that is not included in the list of requirements, you must consult the conditions for being able to do so and the additional documentation you may need.
- In order to identify your pet correctly and have all the documentation available, you must go to your usual vet:
- In European countries, the actual vet may authorise the issue of the European pet passport. This document must be stamped and signed by the vet.
- If you do not have the above passport, you need to obtain an animal health certificate, which is issued by the relevant body in your country of origin. This document certifies that the animal is in a good state of health and attests to its origin.
Once in Spain
- Present the documents showing that the pet meets all requirements. The documentation should be presented at customs, if you are requested to do so.
- Apply to register the animal in the Register:
- If you own dogs, cats, ferrets or other wild animals in captivity, the first step you need to take to prove your ownership once you arrive in the city of Barcelona is to register them in the register of pets and wild animals in captivity.
Want to know more?
Which bodies are responsible for authorisation?
The Government of Catalonia Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries and Food (EU animals) and the Spanish Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (non-EU animals).