British dogs and ferrets lose EU passports but can travel after Brexit

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FILE PHOTO: Outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Milton Keynes

LONDON (Reuters) -British pets such as dogs, cats or ferrets will lose their current European Union passports after Britain leaves the EU's orbit on Dec. 31 and will have to be microchipped, vaccinated and have a special animal health certificate to travel.

Britain was granted Part 2 listed status under the EU Pet Travel Scheme meaning that those with pets and assistance dogs will need to jump through more hoops to travel to the EU.

"We have been granted ‘Part 2’ listed third country status by the EU which will ensure that travelling with your pet continues from 1 January onwards," Christine Middlemiss, UK Chief Veterinary Officer, said.

Pet dogs, cats or ferrets must be microchipped, vaccinated against rabies, treated for tapewom and have an Animal Health Certificate (AHC) to travel to the EU, the government said. The rules will also apply to pets travelling to Northern Ireland from Britain.

There will be no change to the current health preparations or documents for pets entering Britain from either the EU or Northern Ireland.

Britain had been seeking Part 1 listed status.

(Reporting by Guy Faulconbridge; Editing by Kate Holton)