Vaccinating Your Dog Against Rabies

A while ago, we took an in-depth look at rabies and how it can affect your dog. Luckily, for those based in the UK, rabies in dogs has been eradicated thanks to stringent measures. However, the disease can still be found in very rare circumstances.

The last case of rabies in the UK occurred in 1970, due to an imported animal that was outside of quarantine. However, the illegal trade of animals could easily cause a rise in cases once again.

If animals are transported correctly and processed through the proper channels, there is nothing to worry about. That’s why, as specialists in dog travel, PBS Pet Travel can help keep you and your pet safe and eliminate potential risks.

In this blog, we will cover how to safely transport your dog into and out of the UK, ensuring all rabies risks are eliminated along the way.

Taking your dog abroad

If you are looking to take your dog out of the UK, there are several things you must do to ensure legal compliance. If you fail to follow all required measures, you risk having your animal taken away from you.

Part of this compliance includes proving that your dog has been vaccinated against rabies. Your dog must be at least 12 weeks old before receiving the vaccine, and their age must first be verified with the vet.

If you are looking to travel to the EU or Northern Ireland with your pet, you will need to wait for 21 days after the first vaccination before you travel.

The vaccine must be an inactivated or recombinant vaccine that has been approved in the country of use.

Bringing your dog into the UK

If you live outside of the UK and are looking to visit the country, you will need to be aware of the requirements that the British government have in place.

Before travelling to the UK, you must ensure your dog is vaccinated against rabies. As with taking your dog outside the UK, your dog must be at least 12 weeks old before receiving the vaccine, and their age must first be verified with the vet.

Depending on where you are travelling from will determine the next steps. If you are travelling from what is know as a part 1 or 2 listed country, you will need to wait until 21 days after the first vaccination after your dog has been microchipped. If you are unsure whether you are coming into the UK from a part 1 or 2 listed country, you can check here.

If you are not travelling from a part 1 or 2 listed country, there are a few additional rules to follow. After vaccination, your pet also must have a blood sample taken within 30 days. The results of the test must show that the rabies vaccine was successful. You can then travel after waiting a further 3 months from the date of the blood sample.

However, if you are planning to enter the UK and your pet was vaccinated, blood tested and issued an EU pet passport before travelling to an unlisted country, you will not have to wait the required 3 months.

Do I need to get booster jabs for my dog?

You will need to arrange rabies booster jabs, and can usually check when they are due by checking your animal health certificate or pet passport.

How long do dog rabies vaccines last?

Vaccines issued within the UK last for three years, but abroad, there are many that only last for one year. Keep this in mind when travelling to avoid any penalties around non-compliance.

How much is a rabies vaccine for dogs?

The prices for a rabies vaccination can vary between vets, but you can expect to pay around £50. In addition, the blood test could cost up to £120.

These costs are variable, so always check with a few vets first to get the best price for you.

Whilst largely eradicated, rabies is an extremely dangerous and fatal virus. It can affect both animals and humans, so it is important to ensure vaccines are up to date.


Whether you are looking into pet travel to Europe or are considering taking pets abroad much further afield, contact the team at PBS Pet Travel. We have over 20 years of experience transporting animals across the globe. Get a free quote now and let us help you help your pets!