Private: Pet Relocation to Netherlands

Guidelines and Advice for Moving Pets to the Netherlands

Relocating to a new country can be an exciting but challenging experience, especially when you have furry friends to consider. If you are planning to move to the Netherlands and bring your beloved pets along, it's essential to be well-prepared and informed about the legal requirements and healthcare tips for pet relocation. In this article, we will provide you with a comprehensive guide on how to successfully relocate your pets to the Netherlands.

Understanding the Legal Requirements

Before you embark on the journey of moving your pets to the Netherlands, it's crucial to familiarize yourself with the legal requirements set by the Dutch authorities. These regulations are in place to ensure the safety and well-being of both your pets and the local community. Here are the key legal requirements you need to consider:

1. Microchipping and Identification

All dogs and cats entering the Netherlands must be microchipped with an ISO-compliant microchip. The microchip should be implanted before the rabies vaccination is administered. The microchip serves as a unique identification for your pet and is necessary for the pet passport or health certificate.

2. Vaccinations

Rabies vaccination is mandatory for dogs, cats, and ferrets entering the Netherlands. The vaccination should be administered at least 21 days before the travel date. Make sure to keep the vaccination records and certificates as they will be required during the immigration process.

3. Pet Passport

A pet passport is a document that contains all the necessary information about your pet, including identification details, vaccination records, and health certificates. It serves as a travel document for your pet and is required when entering the Netherlands. Ensure that your pet's passport is up to date and valid.

4. Health Certificate

Obtaining a health certificate from a licensed veterinarian is essential for pet relocation. The health certificate confirms that your pet is in good health and free from any contagious diseases. The certificate should be issued within ten days of your departure to the Netherlands.

5. Import Permit

Depending on the country you are relocating from, you may need to obtain an import permit for your pets. Check with the Dutch embassy or consulate in your home country to determine if an import permit is required and the necessary procedures to obtain one.

Preparing Your Pet for the Move

Relocating can be stressful for both humans and animals. To ensure a smooth transition for your pets, it's essential to make adequate preparations before the move. Here are some guidelines to help you prepare your pets for the journey:

1. Visit the Veterinarian

Prior to the move, schedule a visit to your veterinarian for a thorough health check-up. Discuss your plans for relocation and ensure that your pet is in good health and fit to travel. Your veterinarian may also provide additional advice and recommendations specific to your pet's needs.

2. Update Vaccinations

Ensure that your pet's vaccinations are up to date, especially the rabies vaccination. Some countries may have specific vaccination requirements, so check with your veterinarian to ensure compliance with the Dutch regulations.

3. Arrange for a Pet Carrier

Invest in a sturdy and comfortable pet carrier that meets the airline and transportation regulations. Allow your pet to get familiar with the carrier by gradually introducing it and making it a positive and safe space for them. This will help reduce stress during the journey.

4. Familiarize Your Pet with Travel

If your pet is not accustomed to traveling, it's essential to gradually introduce them to the experience. Take short trips in the car or on public transportation to help them get used to the motion and unfamiliar surroundings. This will help reduce anxiety during the actual move.

5. Pack Essential Supplies

Make sure to pack all the necessary supplies for your pet, including food, water, medications, toys, and bedding. Having familiar items will provide comfort and a sense of security during the journey and in the new environment.

Arriving in the Netherlands

Once you have successfully completed the legal requirements and prepared your pet for the move, it's time to focus on their well-being upon arrival in the Netherlands. Here are some healthcare tips to ensure a smooth transition for your pets:

1. Register with a Local Veterinarian

Upon arrival, register your pets with a local veterinarian in the Netherlands. They will provide you with essential information about local healthcare requirements, vaccinations, and preventive measures specific to the region. Regular check-ups and vaccinations are crucial for your pet's well-being.

2. Update Microchip Information

Ensure that your pet's microchip information is updated with your new contact details in the Netherlands. This will help in case your pet gets lost or goes missing. Contact the microchip database provider to update the information.

3. Familiarize Your Pet with the New Environment

Allow your pet some time to adjust to the new surroundings. Gradually introduce them to the new home, neighborhood, and local parks. Maintain a routine and provide plenty of love, attention, and reassurance to help them settle in.

4. Research Pet-Friendly Facilities

Research and locate pet-friendly facilities in your area, such as parks, veterinary clinics, grooming salons, and pet stores. Knowing the available resources will make it easier for you to provide the best care for your pets in the Netherlands.

5. Monitor Your Pet's Health

Keep a close eye on your pet's health and behavior during the initial weeks in the Netherlands. If you notice any unusual symptoms or changes, consult your veterinarian promptly. Early detection and treatment can prevent potential health issues.


Moving your pets to the Netherlands requires careful planning and adherence to legal requirements. By understanding the legal obligations, preparing your pets for the journey, and ensuring their well-being upon arrival, you can successfully relocate your beloved companions to the Netherlands. Remember to consult with professionals, such as veterinarians and pet relocation services, for personalized advice and guidance throughout the process. With proper preparation and care, your pets can enjoy a smooth transition and settle comfortably in their new Dutch home.