The new system will require identification of cats and dogs via electronic microchips or tattoos, obligatory vaccination against rabies and, where necessary, additional checks on the immune response to this vaccination. It will come into force as soon as adopted by the European Parliament and Council. “I am sure these harmonised rules will make travel and holidays abroad much more attractive for those citizens who don't like leaving their cats and dogs behind. They will remove one of the last major barriers to the free movement of not only pets but also of their owners. So far, each Member State has different rules that need to be respected. European citizens will benefit from having the same set of rules applying in the entire EU. I myself am looking forward to travelling with my two dogs more easily”, said David Byrne, Commissioner for Health and Consumer Protection. The new rules are valid only for pets travelling in the company of their owner or another responsible person for non-commercial purposes, i.e. they cannot be sold.

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