22 May 2017
A record number of pets travelling to Jersey from mainland Europe has prompted the States Vet to remind people to follow the importation rules.
747 pets came into Jersey from Europe, excluding the UK, under the PETS travel scheme in the first four months of 2017 - 709 dogs and 38 cats. Approximately 1 in 20 (4.1 per cent) failed to meet the pet passport travel requirements, resulting in animals being refused travel or being put into quarantine. This figure has been creeping up since 2014 (2.6 per cent).
The previous high for the number of dogs or cats coming to Jersey from outside the UK for the same period was in 2015 when a total of 690 pets arrived in the Island from Europe (641 dogs and 49 cats).
Over the last three years the Animal Health and Welfare Section in the Department of the Environment has seen a significant increase in the number of pets that don’t comply with the travel scheme requirements. The service is dealing with pet arrival problems, on average, twice a week, as a result of people failing to comply with the requirements, typically due to lack of awareness and lack of attention to detail.
Up to the end of April this year, 31 pets failed the checks for travel. The most common reason is dogs not having a valid tapeworm (echinococcus) treatment, and not having a valid rabies vaccination, or these details not being correctly recorded in the pet passport by the vet.
The States Veterinary Officer, Theo Knight-Jones is reminding pet owners
- before travelling, check your pet’s rabies vaccination is up to date in the pet passport
- before coming to Jersey, pet owners must arrange for a vet to give their animal an anti-tapeworm treatment. This must be done between one and five days before they plan to arrive in Jersey
- pet owners should ask the vet to check that the details entered in the pet passport are correct.
Dr Knight-Jones said “The rules are there for a good reason - to protect you, your animal and the wider community from sickness, and serious, sometimes fatal diseases like rabies.”
“Travelling with animals can be stressful – for pets and owners – and we’d urge you to avoid any further stress by knowing what steps you have to take to come into Jersey, this includes getting the relevant treatments done within the right timescale with everything correctly recorded in the pet passport. By doing this, needless delays, stress and expenses can be avoided.”
The States Vet is also advising people planning to travel abroad with their own pets in the May half-term or summer to check their pet-passports, to make sure that the rabies vaccination dates are valid for the whole duration of their stay, before they travel.
Under the Pet Travel Scheme pet owners can travel with their own pets within the EU.
If in doubt please contact your vet or the Department of the Environment for advice or check www.gov.je/PetTravel.