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SofaKingWright's avatar

What is the best way to import a cat from the US to the UK?

Asked by SofaKingWright (530points) April 11th, 2011

I am going to be taking my cat with me to the UK, where I will be living for a few years.

Certain airlines allow pets to travel in the cabin, which is most preferred, however it is illegal to travel directly to the UK with a cat in the cabin. UK restrictions are also quite a bit more harsh than other EU countries.

I had an idea to potentially fly into France and then obtain an EU pet passport for the cat and then travel into the UK with the cat by the train, but I am unsure of the exact advantages of doing this or the feasibility of it. I am hoping perhaps some of you have done similar things, or if anyone could offer some advice or guidance upon how to most effectively get this done it would be appreciated.

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4 Answers

JLeslie's avatar

The UK is strict. They hold the cat for a long time. I had friends who did it, can’t remember the details. I would seriously think about leaving it with someone in the US. I doubt how you enter the country matters, whether it be by plane or train. Your paperwork will indicate how long you have been in the country, whichever country. The cat gets a passport?

Tropical_Willie's avatar

It may not happen your way. Read the following Pet Visas
Sounds like six months in quarantine at £200/month, or get the Pet Visa and approval ahead of time. The Pet Visa, the way I read it, requires the micro-chip and FULL vaccination documentation.

SofaKingWright's avatar

The UK is strict, but as far as I can tell under the PETS scheme they no longer quarantine depending on the country you are coming from, and as long as you follow that 6 month guideline with the rabies shot and subsequent blood test. None of that is a problem – I was just hoping to find a way to bypass that 6 month requisite. I know that most of the time once something is within the EU, crossing the border is not too problematic but I am having a hard time finding information on what I can do in the sort of scenario by entering from the US to France to the UK. France has less strict entry policies to the UK, but it all depends on how I could then be allowed to enter the UK from France. It is hard to find anything concrete and there is so much contradicting explanations out there! My main priority is to find the safest way for my cat, I don’t feel overly comfortable having it in cargo. It is a hairless cat so I am worried about it coping with huge changes in temperature.

Tropical_Willie's avatar

You won’t pass the Visa requirement unless you and cat live in France for six months to year.

All shots would probably have to be repeated in France.

Get the micro-chips and all the shot—-SIX months before you go.

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