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Traveling with Your Pet in Greece

Can it be done? Should it?

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Traveling with Your Pet in Greece
Photo of cat in Greece © deTraci Regula; licensed to About.com
Travelers to Greece are often confused about whether or not they can bring their dog - or very well-trained cat - with them on their travels. Here are some tips for traveling with your pet in Greece.

Summertime? Wintertime? Forget it.

This has nothing to do with Greece - it applies everywhere. If you are traveling by plane, there is always a risk that your cat or dog will be subjected to extreme temperatures. It's safer to plan your pet travel for spring or fall, when temperatures are milder. And minimize stops and long layovers.

Are you and your pet part of the European Union? Bravo!

Travel with pets in Greece is much easier if you are already part of the European Union. Here is a information on obtaining an EU Pet Passport.

What are the Requirements for Bringing a Pet to Greece from the United States?

The American Embassy in Athens has a good page on what is required for an American citizen to bring a pet to Greece from the United States, with the intention of keeping it in Greece for some time. The minimum includes a rabies vaccination certificate, a microchip, and a good-health certificate. The good health certificate must be from a vet examination within the last ten days prior to your departure for Greece, and the rabies certificate must be no less than 30 days old and no more than 12 months old. There's also paperwork which must be filed ahead of time with the Greek authorities.

This page from the Greek government includes a version of the good-health form in Greek and English, but that doesn't guarantee it will be exactly what is needed at the time of your trip. Please double-check prior to your trip.

Is there rabies in Greece?

Cases of rabies are extremely rare, and many islands, such as Crete, are considered to be rabies-free - something I was glad to learn when I was accidentally bitten by a startled street dog there a few years ago the night before my flight home.

What about Vet Care in Greece?

Your chances are good for finding a vet in the major metropolitan areas, and some rural areas may have an animal doctor as well, but they can be few and far between. There is very little of the on-demand emergency care and advanced veterinary hospitals you may be used to having access to in the States. However, since many prescription drugs for humand and pets may be available without prescription at Greek pharmacies, you may be able to get medication refills fairly easily. Bring a list of your pet's medications with you and have the vet write down the generic versions. Even then, the generic terms may not be identical for the medications in Greece, but it can help a Greek pharmacist, who are generally very well trained and multi-lingual, narrow down the options.

As a side note, the European Union has chided Greece for not having sufficient veterinary staff to handle animal inspections and other tasks.

Yes on Ferrets, No on Parrots?

Oddly enough, Greek pet regulations apply to cats, dogs, and ferrets. Birds are generally not permitted for import, particularly parrots.

Plan Your Own Trip to Greece

Find & Compare Discount Flights to Athens

Find & Compare Discount Rental Cars in Athens

Find & Compare Rates on Hotels in Athens and throughout Greece and the Greek Islands

Book your Own Day Trips Around Athens

Book your Own Short Trips Around Greece

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