Please note

Know before you go – all the latest travel advice as well as entry requirements for your trip.

Can I bring my pet?

Of course! Don’t leave your four-legged friend behind, they’re part of the family! Bring them along so that they can share the adventures and enjoy the fun. On Stena Line, pets are welcome and you can book your companion into a kennel (we advise that you pre-book to secure a kennel), take them on onboard (there are some rules around this) or keep them inside the car.  Some of our ferries have pet friendly cabins that can be pre-booked too.

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What if I’m travelling with a guide, hearing or autism assistance dog?

 

Guide, hearing and autism assistance dogs are welcome in all areas of our ports and ships and are entitled to free travel.  They have full access to the passenger decks on all Stena Line routes and vessels. All guide, hearing or autism assistance dogs must have the necessary paperwork when checking in at the port and must wear the correct harnesses and jackets at all times while travelling. Please refer to the specific information pertaining to assistance dogs on our Irish Sea routes by selecting your route of interest in the "Related Questions" section. 

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What vaccinations does my pet need?

 

If you’re travelling to Britain and Europe, pets need to have documentation showing that the essential vaccinations have been carried out. Please note that it is your responsibility to provide all necessary documents and to make all arrangements, including, where necessary, quarantine, to satisfy all legal requirements.

 

Dogs must undergo a tapeworm treatment not less than 24 - 120 hours prior to check-in for travel to the UK from Continental Europe. The EU pet passport must be giving the time and date of treatment.  For residents of Northern Ireland please visit https://www.daera-ni.gov.uk/articles/travelling-pets for information although there will be no requirement for a pet passport or routine checks .for non-commercial movement of pets between Northern Ireland and Great Britain until further notice.

 

Pets must be vaccinated against rabies.  Firstly ensure your pet is microchipped or the vaccination will not count.  The dog must be at least 12 weeks old before vaccination and the vaccination must be in date at the time of travel.  You must wait 21 days from the date of the rabies vaccination before travelling.

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Does my pet need a pet passport?

 

Pet travel with dogs, cats and ferrets is bound by the conditions of the EU pet passport. The EU pet passport or an animal health certificate replaces all passports or other documents previously used for pet travel in Europe including the PETS document. The EU pet passport can be acquired at any authorized veterinarian after a microchip has been fitted and a successful blood test has been given.

 

From 1 January 2021, UK style EU Pet Passports issued in GB or NI up to 31 December 2020 are no longer valid. As an interim measure, NI pet owners can contact their private vet, who will update their pet passport appropriately to allow travel. A new style UK (NI) branded EU Pet Passport will be distributed to veterinary practices in due course.


Brexit Advice: As of the 1 January 2021, the rules for travelling with your dog, cat or ferret from Britain to the EU have changed. More details are available at GOV.UK.

 

Please note that it is your responsibility to provide all necessary documents and to make all arrangements, including, where necessary, quarantine, to satisfy all legal requirements.

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What papers will my pet need?

 

Under the EU pet movement system, all pet dogs, cats and ferrets moving between EU Member States must meet the same animal health rules. All pets travelling between the Republic of Ireland and the UK, the UK and Continental Europe and across Europe must be micro chipped and accompanied by a pet passport. You can find more information about the changes made to pet travel implemented on 29th December 2014 by clicking the following link - EU Pet Travel Scheme.

 

Please note that it is your responsibility to provide all necessary documents and to make all arrangements, including, where necessary, quarantine, to satisfy all legal requirements.

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Does my pet need to be micro-chipped?

 

All pets travelling between the Republic of Ireland and the UK or Continental Europe and between the UK and Continental Europe must be micro chipped and accompanied by a pet passport. Your pet must be fitted with an approved electronic transponder (microchip) for identification by an authorised veterinarian. Several organisations handle the registration of electronic pet identification numbers. This registration may also be useful when retrieving a runaway pet. 

 

Please note that it is your responsibility to provide all necessary documents and to make all arrangements, including, where necessary, quarantine, to satisfy all legal requirements.

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What are the rules for travelling with pets after Brexit?

 

From 1 January 2021, the rules for travelling with your dog, cat or ferret from Britain to the EU (including pets returning to the Republic of Ireland from Britain) have changed. For more details please visit the links below.

Travelling with Pets from Britain to the EU >>

Travelling with Pets between Britain and Northern Ireland >>

Travelling with Pets from Republic of Ireland to Britain >>

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If my pet remains in my vehicle can I check on it during the crossing?

 

This may be permitted but will vary by vessel and cannot be guaranteed.  Speak to our team at time of booking for further information.

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What if I am travelling with more than 5 pets?

 

From 29th December 2014 changes to the EU pet travel scheme require additional rules for vehicles carrying more than five pets. For more information please click on the following link, EU Pet Travel Scheme.

 

If you are travelling with 6 or more pets with the intention of attending a competition or show, you must complete an exemption from commercial movement declaration form. You should book via our 'Groups' department with evidence of the competition or show then provide the exemption declaration on check-in. 

 

If you are travelling with 6 or more pets and are not travelling for a competition or show, you must book via our Freight department and provide all necessary paperwork for the commercial movement of animals.

 

Please note: It is not possible to travel with 6 or more pets on the Harwich-Hook of Holland route.

 

Useful links (UK)

 

Exemption declaration forms

Travelling with pets from Northern Ireland

Commercial movement of pets from Northern Ireland 

UK Government advice on exporting live animals

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I am travelling with horses, can I book online?

 

Horseboxes up to 12m in length can be booked online on our Belfast - Cairnryan and Belfast - Liverpool routes. On these routes, vehicles over 12m in length must be booked via our freight department. For all other routes please book via Stena Line Freight.

 

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What responsibilities do I have for my pet whilst travelling by ferry?

  • You are responsible for ensuring the animal's welfare.
  • If pets travel inside a vehicle or in the onboard kennel they must remain there for the duration of the crossing.
  • We recommend that dogs should travel in the provided onboard kennel and Stena Line cannot be held responsible for any material or immaterial damage that may arise from not using our kennel facilities
  • It is your obligation to ensure that all conditions for EU pet travel and the UK Pet Travel scheme (PETS) are met.
  • Stena Line cannot be held responsible for the accuracy of the information given.
  • Should your pet not meet the conditions of the EU pet travel and the UK Pet Travel scheme (PETS) the animal is liable to be held in UK quarantine for a period of up to 6 months or be re-exported.
  • Stena Line is obliged as an accredited PETS carrier to verify your documentation and will refuse the carriage of your pet if the documentation is in breach of the PETS rules.
  • If you are planning to quarantine your pet you will be fully responsible for all arrangements and cost associated with this procedure. You will need to produce the relevant documentation to Stena Line prior to carriage.
  • Stena Line cannot be held liable for any cost - material or immaterial in connection with non-compliance with EU pet travel and PETS rules.

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Illicit Puppy Trading
Stena Line condemns the illicit puppy trade and tries to stop this practice. In cooperation with DAERA and DEFRA , Stena Line is actively taking action against the transport of dogs and puppies from puppy farms between Ireland and Great Britain. Investigators are authorized to stop and search vehicles belonging to people suspected of illegally dealing in dogs and puppies. All passengers who are guilty of illegally transporting dogs will be prevented from continuing their journey. The result is criminal prosecution and the confiscation of the puppies.

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Pets Liability Disclaimer

Stena Line cannot accept responsibility for any of the links from this web site, nor the content thereof. The links are provided purely for your benefit and Stena Line is not responsible for inaccuracies in the information provided.

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Contact frequently asked question icon

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