Relocating to Malta with your pet

In this article you will find out all the-need-to know details about relocating to Malta with your pet, or relocating to most European countries.

Want to Relocate Abroad with your Pet?

Relocating abroad is a process that requires a lot of careful planning. Even more so if you’re relocating together with your beloved pets. Regulation (EU) No 576/2013 regulates the non-commercial movement of pets which accompany its owner to another country. The regulations builds on the existing passport scheme for pets and introduces a new model whereby pets can travel to the EU with their owners if they have a passport containing proof of their identity and anti-rabies vaccination.

What is the timeline for non-commercial movement of the pets?

The non-commercial movement of the pet animal may take place up to 5 days before or after the movement of the owner, in which case the non-commercial movement of the pet animal is carried out under the responsibility of a natural person who has authorization in writing from the owner to carry out the non-commercial movement of the pet animal on his behalf.

The maximum number of pets (dogs, cats or ferrets) which may be moved for non-commercial purposes is up to five (5). This number can only be exceeded in exceptional circumstances such as when the movement of pets is due to participation in competitions or that the pets are more than six months old. Movement of pet animals which are younger than 15 weeks is not allowed.

What are the Health Requirements when relocating to Malta with your Pet from Non-EU Countries?

Health Requirements for Pets Entering Malta

Prior to entering Malta your pet (a dog, a cat, or a ferret) must fulfill the following health requirements:

  • Make sure that your pet has been microchipped. No countries in Europe will allow a pet enter unless it can be traced and the owners contacted in the event of an incident or emergency. The required ISO identification is a 15 digit microchip, or clearly readable tattoo. The animal must be identified before the rabies vaccination;
  • A rabies vaccine at 12 weeks of age is required. In case you’re relocating from an “unlisted country” your pet might also need a blood test. The test must be carried out on a sample collected by an authorized veterinarian at least 30 days after the date of vaccination and not less than three months before the date of movement. The test must measure a level of neutralizing antibody to rabies virus in serum equal to or greater than 0,5 IU/ml, and must be performed in an approved laboratory;
  • An Official Health Certificate issued by the country of departure either “listed” or “unlisted country”. You may find full lists below;
  • 21 days have to pass from the date of the rabies vaccination, and 3 months after the rabies neutralizing antibody test if you are relocating from an “unlisted country”;
  • If you’re travelling to Malta with your dog it must be treated against tapeworms between 24 hours (1 day) and 120 hours (5 days) before entering the country. If you fail to have your dog treated within the established time scale, it may be put into quarantine for up to 4 months. The treatment must be administered by a veterinarian and officially recorded in your pet’s passport.
  • An online pre notification needs to be submitted.

When to apply for a European Pet Passport?

If you’re relocating to Malta with your pet or any other European country, you may consider applying for a European pet passport.

This document lists down all the vaccinations and treatments your pet has received and includes a description of your pet (name, age, color, breed, county of origin), as well as your name and contact information. European Pet Passports are issued by authorized veterinarians in compliance with EU regulations. The passport becomes valid 21 days after the primary rabies vaccination and remains in effect for three years, provided that rabies vaccinations are kept up-to-date.

There are many benefits of obtaining a European pet passport:

  • It allows easy travels within and outside of EU;
  • The passport allows to avoid quarantine;
  • The document keeps all the records in one place.

Should you wish to apply for European pet passport in Malta, contact a veterinarian of your choice at least 2 weeks prior to your appointment.

Listed countries

Below you can find the full list of listed countries:

Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Aruba, Ascension Island, Australia, Bahrain, Barbados, Belarus, Bermuda, BES Islands (Bonaire, Saint Eustatius and Saba), Bosnia-Herzegovina, British Virgin Islands, Canada, Cayman Islands, Chile, Curaçao, Falkland Islands, Fiji, French Polynesia, Guernsey, Hong Kong, Isle of Man, Jamaica, Japan, Jersey, Malaysia, Mauritius, Mexico, Montserrat, New Caledonia, New Zealand, North Macedonia, Russian Federation, Saint Maarten, Singapore, St Helena, St Kitts and Nevis, St Lucia, St Pierre and Miquelon, St Vincent and The Grenadines, Taiwan, Trinidad and Tobago, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom (GB), USA (includes American Samoa, Guam, Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico and the US virgin Islands), Vanuatu, Wallis and Futuna.

Unlisted countries

The unlisted countries are the remaining countries other than the “listed”.

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