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Expat Exchange - Moving with a Pet to The Netherlands 2024
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Moving with a Pet to The Netherlands

By Joshua Wood, LPC

AGS Worldwide Movers
AGS Worldwide Movers

Summary: Learn about moving with a pet to The Netherlands: what the requirements are, important vaccination information, what you can and cannot bring to The Netherlands, travel information and more.

Moving to The Netherlands - Moving with a Pet to The Netherlands

Moving to The Netherlands can be an exciting adventure for expats and digital nomads, and for those with furry companions, it's important to understand the process of bringing a pet into the country. The Netherlands is generally pet-friendly, with many residents owning dogs and cats. However, there are specific vaccination and paperwork requirements that must be met to ensure a smooth transition for your pet. While quarantine is not typically required for pets entering from most countries, there are certain regulations and prohibited breeds that you should be aware of. This article will delve into the details of these requirements, as well as provide guidance on how to navigate the Dutch system once you and your pet have arrived.

Can I bring my dog to The Netherlands?

Yes, you can bring your dog to The Netherlands, provided you comply with the country's pet import regulations. Dogs must be microchipped, vaccinated against rabies, and accompanied by a pet passport or third-country official veterinary certificate. The rabies vaccination must be administered at least 21 days before travel. Dogs from certain countries may require a blood test to confirm the effectiveness of the rabies vaccination. It's also important to check if your dog's breed is not on the list of prohibited breeds in The Netherlands.

Can I bring my cat to The Netherlands?

Similar to dogs, cats are also welcome in The Netherlands with the proper documentation and vaccinations. Your cat must be microchipped and vaccinated against rabies. A pet passport or an official veterinary certificate is also necessary when traveling. As with dogs, the rabies vaccination should be given at least 21 days before entering the country. There are no specific breed restrictions for cats, but all the standard import requirements must be met.

Pets that are Prohibited from Coming into The Netherlands

The Netherlands has restrictions on certain dog breeds that are considered dangerous and are therefore prohibited from entering the country. These breeds include, but are not limited to, Pit Bull Terriers and similar breeds without a pedigree. It's crucial to verify the latest regulations before planning your move, as breed restrictions can change and may include additional breeds. Other exotic pets, such as some reptiles, birds, and mammals, may also be subject to restrictions or bans, so it's important to research the specific rules for any non-canine or feline pets you may have.

How do I bring my pet to The Netherlands?

To bring your pet to The Netherlands, you must ensure they are microchipped with an ISO 11784/11785 compliant 15-digit pet microchip. After microchipping, your pet must be vaccinated against rabies. Pets from within the EU should have a pet passport, while those from outside the EU need an official veterinary certificate. Some pets may require additional treatments, such as a tapeworm treatment for dogs. Always check the latest requirements well in advance of your travel date, as regulations can change. It's also advisable to have a health certificate issued by a licensed veterinarian within a certain timeframe before travel. No quarantine is required for pets entering from most countries, but this can vary depending on the country of origin, so always verify the current regulations.

Upon Arriving in The Netherlands

After arriving in The Netherlands with your pet, there are a few steps you should take to ensure their well-being and compliance with local regulations. While there is no mandatory license for dogs or cats, you must register your pet with the local municipality, which may require a small fee. Finding a veterinarian is straightforward, as there are many clinics across the country, and you can ask for recommendations from local pet owners or expat communities. Dutch people are generally fond of pets, and you'll find that dogs and cats are common in residential areas. Dog parks are available, and there are plenty of green spaces where dogs can be walked. Always keep in mind local rules about leashing and cleaning up after your pet. By following these guidelines, you and your pet can enjoy a happy and healthy life in The Netherlands.

About the Author

Joshua Wood Joshua Wood, LPC joined Expat Exchange in 2000 and serves as one of its Co-Presidents. He is also one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. Prior to Expat Exchange, Joshua worked for NBC Cable (MSNBC and CNBC Primetime). Joshua has a BA from Syracuse and a Master's in Clinical and Counseling Psychology from Fairleigh Dickinson University. Mr. Wood is also a licensed counselor and psychotherapist.

Some of Joshua's articles include Pros and Cons of Living in Portugal, 10 Best Places to Live in Ireland and Pros and Cons of Living in Uruguay. Connect with Joshua on LinkedIn.


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