The Adventures of a 12 pound Shetland Sheepdog (Sheltie) going to Paris.


Tom & Maxine like to travel. Blogging helps us create a record of the trips, and share with friends and family...

Monday, August 07, 2006

Bringing Pets Into France -- Requirements

We were unable to find any single, authoritative source that described all the requirements to bring our dog into France and then take her out and back home to Los Angeles. So, what we know, we've pieced together. Here are the basics:

To leave the US/Enter France.
1. Dog must have a current rabies vaccine (given at least 30 days before the trip)
2. Dog must have a 'chip' or be tattooed (note that the tattooing alternative is being phased out and w/in 5 years only a 'chip' will work.
3. Dog must have a dual language (English, French) health certificate prepared w/in 10 days of the trip, signed by your vet, and stamped by the USDA (luckily for us the USDA office is 45 minutes away -- I understand that you can fedx the documents back and forth to them as well)

To leave France/Return to the US.
1. We don't believe that there are any French requirements to leaving
2. The California Department of Agriculture defers to USDA requirements (as I was told in a phone call)
3. The USDA only requires a valid rabies vaccine (meaning the dog was vaccinated w/in the last year)

Here are some resources.
1. French embassy in the US page on pet importation requirements.
2. US Customs Requirements (PDF)
3. California Department of Agriculture
4. French (actually EU) health certificate PDF (see #3 above)
5. USDA alerts of French specific requirements.

***The USDA alerts on French requirements contain a special warning***
"Note:France will accept only the ISO 11784 microchip."
As I understand it the EU has approved the use of either the ISO11784 or ISO 11785 chip, BUT France REQUIRES (per this USDA warning) only the 11784 chip. THE TRICK IS THAT CHIPS SOLD AS 'EUROCHIPS' are 11785. Just as importantly, you can't (as I was told by Avid, the maker of the Eurochip we had implanted in Cassie) buy an 11784 chip in the US. In other words, Cassie has a chip accepted by all of the EU, EXCEPT France.

What to do? The Avid representative told me that standard practice is to rent a scanner which can read this chip, bring the scanner with you to France, and use it to demonstrate that your dog has a chip. Complications! If this last piece (on French chip requirements and how to satisfy them) isn't clear feel free to comment and I'll add more detail!


Blogger cucina testa rossa said...

Hi Tom & Maxine ~ Bienvenue a Paris! Laura

12:29 AM  
Blogger Riana said...

From what I have heard, the French are very laxidazial about dogs coming in, most won't even ask you for papers. A lady on bonjour paris describes bringing her dog and they just walked on in. Nothing was said. No worries.

9:22 AM  
Blogger Merrily said...

We have been bringing our cat back and forth, USA, France, USA for 4 years now. Agree with what Tom & Maxine say. We have our cat in the cabin and I must carry her in my arms through the security people scanner. Does anyone know how the new "Total Body" scanner will affect pets? Thanks. Merrily

2:29 AM  

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