Advise please: Bringing US dog to UK??

:confused: Hello all.
I am considering a move to London from the United States and I am in turmoil about bringing my dogs.

Have any of you had any experience with bringing dogs to the UK? Quarantine restrictions are my biggest concern. None of the sites I’ve seen have said if I can even VISIT them! I’ve checked this site: which allows for animals from some outlying countries in without quarantine…but not the US. I’m debating a dog sitter in the states to a kennel in the UK.

Should I even bother trying to bring them?

Any/all advise is much appreciated.

A friend brought her dog from the US to Ireland, where regulations are very similar. Yes, she could visit the dog while it was in quarantine.

Her assessment, FWIW, was that she wouldn’t do it again. It cost a small fortune, and on the whole she felt her dog would have been happier had she found a new home for it in the States.

Passports for Pets has lots of very useful information and links.

From the look of things, if you can hold off moving for a while until the USA is accepted for the PETS scheme you may be able to bring your dog over without having to have it quarantined.

Checking the FAQs for the kennels I found after Googling “uk quarantine”, it looks like you can visit your dog but they suggest you give a short “settling in” period.

From the United Kingdom’s [url=""Code of Practice for THE WELFARE OF DOGS & CATS IN QUARANTINE PREMISES:

So, yes, you are entitled a right to visit your pet while it’s in quarantine (which is likely to be a period of 6 months). But since these codes are voluntary, make sure you communicate directly with the quarantine provider you choose to make sure they offer this provision (however, 59 out of the UK’s 61 providers have agreed to them). After all, these codes are voluntary, so it’s incumbent upon you to see what you get.

You can find more contact info at the bottom of that Code link.

The regulations regarding importing pets to Britain from North America may be changing soon.

Here’s a link to an article Pet Travel Scheme: North America Q&A dated 15 July 2002. It also gives details about how contact relevant the Department for further details.

In the meantime, yes there’s no problem about visiting your pet in quarantine, but it’s not a pleasant arrangement for you or the animal.

Okay, let me try that link again: Code of Practice for THE WELFARE OF DOGS & CATS IN QUARANTINE PREMISES

Thanks for all the info. It seems that the regulation change was due for an update in September…however, I can’t seem to find any info on this. everton’s link was the “latest” news I could find.

You may want to check the UK’s “Dangerous dogs” law. If your pooch is on the list of banned breeds (American Pit Bull Terrier, Tosa Inu, and Dogo Argentino, amongst others), you will likely either be banned from bringing them in, or they may be confiscated and euthanized at a later date.


My aunt and uncle moved to the UK and had to put their dog in quarantine. The effect on the dog was terrible. After the 6 months, the dog had lost its socialization completely, snapped at their kids, growled and barked incessantly, and so on. Ultimately they had to put it down, because the vet said it had been psychologically traumatized by the six months away from the family, in quarantine.

Now, that was many years ago, and maybe visiting rights have improved, but I don’t think I could put my dog through it.

I’m sure I’ve read something very recently (in the last couple of days) to the effect that pets from the US will no longer have to go through quarantine when entering the UK. Sorry I don’t have time right now to go look for the reference, it might have been in the London Times …

I was right: from the Times today:

(A brief summary, I can’t access the Times online at the moment)

"Pets may become the latest travel accessory for Britons heading for holidays in the warmer climate of Florida and California……

An announcement is expected from Eliot Morley, the Animal Health Minister, before the end of the month.

The first pets to enter the UK under the new scheme are expected in ;the new year. Airlines must apply to the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs for a licence to carry the dogs, but a Whitehall source said that the process would be speedy.

However the success of the North America scheme will depend on airlines, and yesterday not one would confirm its participation in the scheme.

Good news: The British government announced Wednesday that as of Dec. 11, dogs and cats from the U.S. and Canada will be allowed to enter Britain without enduring the dreaded six-month quarantine.

Now to find the vet to do the bloodtest and and airline to transport them.

It’s hard to be a mom sometimes…but the sloppy kisses make it all worth it.