Dog being checked by vet

Animal health certificate

From 1 January 2021 pet passports will no longer be valid for travel from Great Britain (GB). The animal health certificate (AHC) will take its place.

How do I get an AHC?

You will need to call your vet practice and ask if they have an official veterinarian (OV) on site. They will need to hold an appropriate certificate and be authorised by the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) to issue an AHC.

If your usual practice doesn’t have an OV, you will need to call other practices to find one.

Once you have found an OV, you will then need to book an appointment with them. On arrival at your appointment you will need to have with you:

  • your pet
  • vaccination card and other medical records (if this vet is different from your usual one)
  • microchipping date
  • vaccination history


Be sure to speak with an official veterinarian and check the government website before you travel.

Is there anything I need to prepare before the appointment with the OV?

Your pet will need to have had their rabies vaccination at least three weeks before the appointment with the OV. You will also need evidence that your pet has had a UK rabies vaccine within the past three years.

What details do they need for an AHC?

The AHC will usually include details such as:

  • owners personal details
  • a description of your pet
  • rabies vaccine details
  • tapeworm treatment details (if needed)
  • the EU country you’re entering - you will need to make sure that your AHC is issued in both English and in the language of the country you are planning on visiting

How long will the AHC last?

Your AHC will be valid for entering the EU for 10 days from the date it is issued. It will then last four months for any onward travel to other EU countries and for your return to GB.

Who will need to apply for the AHC?

This must be completed by the owner of the pet, or a person who has been nominated in writing by the owner. The owner or nominated person will need to be over 16 years old.

How much does an AHC cost?

On average, an AHC will cost between £100-£150 which will include the consultation and reviewing all the paperwork. However, this will not include the additional costs of:

More information

  • Visit the government website
  • Call the government’s pet travel helpline on 0370 241 1710 Monday to Friday, 8:30am to 5pm (closed on bank holidays)
  • Email the government’s pet travel helpline at [email protected] 

— Page last updated 27/01/2023