UK pet owners will finally get more freedom of movement for cats and dogs in January 2012 when the UK falls into line with the rest of Europe. Currently, if you want to take a dog or cat from Portugal to the UK, you have to plan six months ahead with blood tests and various other bits of documentation.
The British Embassy has announced that, from 1 January 2012, pets will no longer need a blood test and will only need to wait 21 days before they can travel. Modern science means rabies and other vaccinations are much more effective and work more quickly. The UK’s six month quarantine system was created in the 19th century when such vaccines didn’t exist.
Detailed information on what pet owners and vets need to do before bringing a pet to the UK can be found at http://www.defra.gov.uk/wildlife-pets/pets/travel or obtained from the UK helpline +44 (0)870 241 1710.
In summary, the new requirements are microchip, rabies vaccination 21 days before travel, documentation (pet passport). There will no longer be a need for a blood test or tick treatment.