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Italy is a beautiful country filled with stunning scenery, delicious foods and wine and, of course, piles of history. If you’re considering moving there, there’s bound to be a place that suits you perfectly.

While travelling with animals has often been seen as a huge barrier, Italy is actually one of the easiest places to take your four-legged friends. They’ll be welcomed with open arms so you can emigrate guilt-free.

However, before you take the plunge, there are just a few things that you’ll need to think about.

How to Travel to Italy with Your Pet

Before you book your flights, take a look into the documentation and veterinary checks that you’ll need for your pets relocation to Italy.

Your Pet’s Vaccinations

If you intend to travel with a dog to Italy, you will need to ensure that they’ve had their vaccinations for:

  • Distemper
  • Hepatitis
  • Leptospirosis
  • Parainfluenza
  • Parvovirus
  • +/- Bordetella
  • And most importantly – Rabies

If you have a cat going to Italy, they will need their vaccinations for:

  • Feline Viral Rhinotracheitis
  • Calicivirus
  • Panleukopenia

All vaccinations should be included on their EU health certificate which you will need to prove that your pet is fit and healthy to travel.


Once your pet has had all of their vaccinations, you’ll need to have these declared on an EU Health Certificate by your vet. This certifies your pet to travel as long as the vaccinations are still in date.

They typically last around 3 years as a booster. However, their initial vaccine will only last a single year – so the frequency will entirely depend on age.

All vaccines will need to have been administered at least 2 weeks prior to travel to ensure their maximum effect and to make sure that your pet experiences no adverse side effects.

Your vet (or our vet) will also need to see your pet within 10 days of their transfer date to give them a clean bill of health. This full health check should be signed by your vet in coordination with us, your pet travel company. Without the go ahead from your vet along with the microchip implantation record and Rabies certificate, your pet won’t be allowed to travel.


For pet relocation to Italy, all pets MUST have a valid microchip assigned to you before travelling. This is how your pet will be identified if they get lost or stolen.

The chip must comply with ISO Standard 11784 or meet with AVID 9 or 10.

Your pet’s chip must be implanted prior to the Rabies vaccination being given. This means that the vaccination will show on their records when you travel.

Pet-Friendly Italy

Moving to Italy with your dog or cat is usually a great idea. Italy welcomes pets and it’s known to be one of the most pet-friendly places in Europe.

The popularity of having a pet in Italy increases every year and there are many restaurants and days out that welcome your furry friend along too.

Many apartment owners will also welcome your dog or cat, as long as they are house trained and well behaved, so you’re not likely to come across as many barriers if you decide to rent than you would in other countries.

Things to Watch Out for

Once you’ve committed to moving to Italy, there are a few extra things that you’ll need to think about before packing up your pet.

Banned Breeds

Unlike a lot of other European countries, most breeds of dogs and cats are allowed in Italy. They don’t have the problems with strays that other countries seem to have.

However, some dogs are considered dangerous breeds. If you own a Rottweiler or Doberman Pinscher, or a similar mixed breed, then you will need to declare this before entering and it’s possible that they will require a behaviour assessment.

Unfortunately, neither of these breeds are permitted in Venice.

5 Day Flight Regulations

To be considered a ‘non-commercial’ flight, your pet will need to fly within 5 days of your flight. However, managing your pet’s flight times can be tricky for pet travel, and if you go beyond this 5-day rule, you may be classed as flying commercially. This will likely increase your import charges and change your import requirements.

To assist to find a suitable flight, and to get your pet’s EU documentation ready, it’s recommended that you seek the assistance of our pet relocation service.

Ferndale will help you plan your documents, vet visits and will help you settle your pet onto the flight so that they feel at ease. Contact us well in advance if you would like to move with your pets to Italy!