How does your lovely pet feel abroad?

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Take your pet overseas with you!

How much do you love your pet? Are you ready to take you pet with you abroad if you have a chance to do it? Are you ready to go through all the veterinary and paper stuff to bring your lovely miaowing or whoofing or doing-other-stuff pet with you to your new home? If the answer yes, I am so much on the same planet with you! If not, I can also understand that.

My fluffy girl had already lived with me for 4.5 years in Russia, when I decided on moving abroad. My mom told me that I could just leave Kisyounysh (yes, that’s her name!) with her, and she’ll take care of the cat. But my goodness!

I didn’t want to say “goodbye” to my kitty, who is not just a cat to me, but many different things. Luckily my husband (back then boyfriend) loves her too, so there was no problem there.

Silver tabby cat playing with a toy Taking cat abroad
Elena’s cat, Kisyonysh, loves playing with anything she sees in front of her.

Even though I had a full-time job and had to take care of everything regarding my moving, I found time and wish to clarify all the paper and veterinary issues, flight “ticket”, etc. for Kisyonysh.

Well, Kisyonysh actually took all the moving around and the flight extremely well! She feels home in Denmark and even started to go outside once in a while. Now every day when I look at her, I get convinced again and again that it was all worth it! Just look at this lovely creature. How can you leave it behind?

No doubt it was quite a busy period when I had to figure out which documents I needed to have and what I had to do to relocate her here. It was especially complicated due to the fact that different authorities were telling me slightly different things. So every time I had to check and recheck twice. Which I also recommend that you should do.

Plus I worked at that moment and was busy with packing and getting ready for moving myself. So there was a little pressure back then, but I’ve never regretted it!

Kisyonysh didn’t have a passport or vaccinations done by that time. So I had to make sure she got those.

But first she was supposed to get a microchip (has to be done before the first rabies vaccination). You can get the passport (+ registration certificate) and microchip done at your local veterinary station the same day. Unfortunately, I cannot remember how much it cost me.


As for vaccinations, the requirements for them vary from country to country.

To move your cat to Denmark you should make sure it gets a vaccination against rabies; but my cat, for example, also got one called Nobivac Tricat Trio (it contains the 3 core viruses – feline panleucopaenia virus, feline herpesvirus, and feline caliciviru). The vaccinations can be done in a local veterinary station as well. Just call yours and make sure you do everything right.

You should take into consideration that your cat should get vaccine(s) injected for a certain period before your departure (check with your local vet station). There has to pass certain time for vaccine(s) to work.

When this period is over, you are to bring your cat to the vet station again for the vet to examine the animal and confirm that they can travel abroad (provided everything’s fine). Then, you get a veterinary certificate (or transportation paper) allowing you to take your animal abroad with you. Keep in mind that this certificate is valid for 5 days only! At that time (July 2012) it cost me 475.80 rub (which is around 12EUR).

To sum up, from your veterinary station you have to get the following:

  • Microchip or tattoo (done before the first rabies vaccination)
  • Veterinary certificate or Pet Passport that certifies the requirements
  • Valid rabies vaccination (in accordance with the recommendations of the manufacturer of the vaccine)
  • Transportation paper

Flying with a cat

But this was only the medical part, as I call it. Now I had to make sure Kisyonysh could get on the plane.

So my next step was to buy her a “flight ticket”. The company I flew with (AirBaltics) provided only two “animal seats” (that would mean on the floor next to my feet ) on board. If one of them is taken by a dog for example, cats are not allowed. But I was lucky with that one. So I paid 50 EUR for the cat “seat” and now had to make sure that I had the right cat transportation bag; it had to correspond with the flying company’s rules. Most likely you can find the rules on your flying company’s website. However, I decided to call them as well to get all the details. That was a very good idea! That’s how I figured out that I had to hurry with buying a place for my cat, before a dog would get on that flight.

Border inspection

Remember! at least 24 hours prior to arrival the Border Inspection Post must be notified of the import.

The following information should be mailed or faxed to the Border Inspection Post of entry:

  • Information on the animal and owner, incl. country of origin
  • Time and date of arrival and flight number

Call and make sure you’ve sent it to the right inspection post!

So far, so good.

Though there was one thing I was worried about – to get her through the veterinary customs control at the airport. Not that there was anything wrong with Kisyonysh, but I’d just never done it before…

At the airport

At the airport I had to go to the vet customs before going through the registration. There they had to take the transportation paper issued by the local vet station and if everything’s fine there, to issue a veterinary certificate (it’s in both Russian and English and is valid in the EU) allowing me to finally get Kisyonysh on board. Plus I also got so-called Annex II which I had to fill out there.

Despite my concerns, everything went pretty easy and fast. So my lovely cat was all ready and happy to go with me to our new home.

Everything went well. Kisyonysh behaved and did well on board. We got to Denmark without any problems and now live happily together, including my husband who, luckily for me, likes Kisyonysh, too

To move Kisyonysh surely took some time and effort, but every day when I look at her I know it was worth it! So if you have such a chance, take your pets with you to your new home!

Republished with kind permission from Elena via Life in Denmark: How Does Your Lovely Pet feel Abroad?. And Take your pet with you to your new home

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  1. I couldn’t imagine living without my dog. When I moved abroad, I made sure he came with me. He got chipped/vaccinated and handled the plane so well. Now he loves his new home in Denmark 🙂

  2. We could not imagine moving without our dogs, one of our dogs moved with us to four different countries. We did leave our cat and parrot in Nigeria, however, the cat was a nomad with an established life and many different owners and we could not get an export permit for our parrot.

    Our current dog is not too impressed with our home in Astana, she misses the countryside, hates living in an apartment and cannot stand the winter cold but she has managed to cope for the last two years and would have missed us terribly had we left her with family.

    1. I too can’t imagine leaving my pets behind, although sadly, many, many people do. My cat is very well travelled and settles well. My dog is less settled and more sensitive, but she will come around to her new life. She does miss the huge garden we had in Berlin though. And hasn’t taken to all the comings and goings of living in an apartment block.

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