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The Netherlands (Holland) - Pets

Like most EU countries, The Netherlands is a member of the Pet Travel Scheme introduced in 2004 which allows pet carnivores (dogs, cats and ferrets) from any of the countries covered by the scheme to be brought into the country without quarantine provided they meet specified anti-rabies, blood sampling and anti-worm/anti-tick hygiene requirements.

To qualify for entry to the Netherlands under this scheme, the pet must be fitted with an identification microchip; must be vaccinated against rabies within one year and at least 30 days before the move, and blood tested to check the effectiveness of the rabies vaccination, and be issued with an Official Pet Passport (or a Pet Travel Scheme Certificate) by a recognized veterinary surgeon in the country that the animal is moving from. The Pet Passport includes a full description of the pet including the breed, sex, colour age and any distinguishing marks, as well as the name of the owner.

A health certificate is required to bring some other animals into the Netherlands, including birds, horses and cows, but some small pets such as rabbits, hares and fishes do not require a Pet Passport or Health certificate.

Animals can only be brought into the Netherlands as pets if they are not going to be subsequently sold or traded. Pets which do not hold a valid passport will be vaccinated on arrival in the Netherlands and kept in quarantine for a period of 30 days.

Arrangements to transport your pet into the Netherlands and advice on the import regulations can be provided by specialist organisations such as KLM Cargo. There are animal boarding facilities at Schiphol Airport if needed on arrival.

Dutch people are mostly very fond of animals, and many families have pets such as dogs, cats, birds, fish, rabbits or hamsters, while some have larger or more exotic pets such as horses or reptiles. Veterinary services are excellent in the Netherlands, and there are even specialised animal hospitals, medical transport services and even pet crematoriums. There are also dog-walking services, and boarding facilities for pets (dierenpension). There are many pet shops selling animals, pet food, equipment, toys and other pet necessities.

A tax is payable by dog owners.

Further details follow:

Dogs, cats and ferrets from EU Member States

From 3 July 2004, the non-commercial movement of pet dogs, cats and ferrets within the European Union must comply with the following veterinary requirements:

- Pet animals must be identified. In the Netherlands, the most popular method used to identify animals is the electric transponder (microchip), which is inserted just under the skin. A clearly readable tattoo is also accepted as identification. Both means of identification are applied by a veterinarian.
- Dogs, cats and ferrets must be vaccinated against rabies by an authorised veterinarian, who must certify that the animal has a valid rabies vaccination in the EU passport.
- A compulsory blood test must be taken for pet dogs, cats or ferrets travelling to the United Kingdom, Ireland, Malta and Sweden. The blood sample must be taken by an authorised veterinarian (for United Kingdom and Ireland 6 months, for Sweden 4-12 months after the last vaccination) before the date of entry and must have a satisfactory result.
- Dogs, cats and ferrets must be accompanied by an EU passport on journeys between Member States. The passport should provide the animal's identification, the owner's name and address, and proof that the animal has a valid vaccination against rabies.

In the Netherlands, EU passports for pet animals are publised by the Koninklijke Nederlandse Maatschappij voor Diergeneeskunde (Royal Netherlands Veterinary Association), Full Service Bureau Dierenasielen Nederland, Vereniging van Beroepsmatige Kennelhouders and Stichting Chip. The EU passports published by these four organisations are approved by the Dutch Ministry of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality. Pet owners can apply to their veterinarian to obtain an EU passport for their pet. They will receive a Dutch version of the passport.

Dogs, cats and ferrets from non-EU countries

As of 3 July 2004, the following rules apply to pet dogs, cats and ferrets entering the European Union (except the United Kingdom, Ireland, Malta and Sweden) from non-EU countries:

- The animals must have an electric transponder or clearly readable tattoo to identify them.
- Dogs, cats and ferrets must be vaccinated against rabies.
- Dogs, cats and ferrets crossing an EU border must be accompanied by a standard certificate which identifies the animal, gives the owner's name and address, and certifies that the animals was vaccinated against rabies.
- Animals entering the European Union from a country which is not on the list below, must undergo a blood test that provides evidence of the animal's vaccination against rabies.

The veterinary requirements for movements within the EU apply equally to the entry of pet animals from the following countries:

- Norway
- Switzerland
- Iceland
- Andorra
- Liechtenstein
- Monaco
- San Marino
- Vatican City
- Ascension
- Antigua and Barbuda
- Japan
- Saint Kitts and Nevis
- Cayman Islands
- Montserrat
- Mauritius
- New Caledonia
- New Zealand
- French Polynesia
- Saint-Pierre and Miquelon
- Netherlands Antilles
- Australia
- Aruba
- Barbados
- Bahrain
- Bermuda
- Canada
- Fiji
- Falkland Islands
- Croatia
- Jamaica
- Singapore
- Saint Helena
- United States of America
- Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
- Vanuatu
- Wallis and Tutuna
- Mayotte
- United Arab Emirates
- Chile
- Hong Kong
- Russian Federation

And the territories of EU Member States: Greenland, Faeroe Islands, Balearic Islands, Canary Islands (except Ceuta and Melilla), French Guyana, Guadeloupe, Martinique and Reunion, Gibraltar, the Azores, Madeira.

Special requirements for entry into the Netherlands

The Netherlands does not set any additional veterinary requirements for pet dogs, cats and ferrets entering the Netherlands for non-commercial purposes. Animals do not have to be treated for ticks or tapeworms. Young animals aged under three months may enter the Netherlands if the owner can certify that the animal resided at the same place as its place of birth, and had no contact with animals which might have been infected with rabies. Young animals which are not yet weaned, and are therefore accompanying the mother, may also enter the country. Exception: young ferrets from third countries are not accepted, young cats or dogs from third countries not present on the list noted above, are not accepted.

Useful contacts:

PETS helpline
Tel: 44 (0)870 241 1710 (U.K.)
Fax: 44 (0) 1245 458749

Read more about this country

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