Formalities to bring your pet in Hungary

Hi all,

What are the formalities and paperwork required to bring your pet in Hungary?

How long do formalities & paperwork usually take in Hungary?

What are the relevant authorities to contact?

Which vaccines are compulsory? Do your pets have to go in quarantine at their arrival in Hungary?

Which advice would you give to the ones who would like to move with a dog, a cat or any other pet?

Thanks in advance for participating :)

I have regularly travelled from Belgium to Hungary with my dog and other peoples dogs. I have used both the train and private car. I have also travelled within Belgium with my cat.

Link to Movement of Pets (Dogs, Cats and Ferrets) - Introduction
FAQ … nda_en.htm
Legislation … dex_en.htm

What are the formalities and paperwork required to bring your pet in Hungary?

You should get a Pet Passport for your pet if it travels, this may be combined with an ID chip or ear tattoo.

How long do formalities & paperwork usually take in Hungary?
It took my vet one visit to give my cat and dog a passport, the passport was free but I had to pay for a full health check-up. I got the passport at the same time at there annual vaccines.

What are the relevant authorities to contact?
The first place to turn is your vet, either inside or outside Hungary, they should have all the information you need.

Which vaccines are compulsory?
Any good vet in the EU will know what annual vaccination a pet should have to live within the EU, however since about 2007 it is compulsory for all domestic pets to also have an annual Rabbies vaccine in Hungary.

Do your pets have to go in quarantine at their arrival in Hungary?

If the pet is travelling from within the EU then no quarantine is required in Hungary, however for pets travelling from outside the EU you would need to speak to a good vet.
If your pet travelles to the UK, Sweden, Norway or Malta they are required to go though 'quarantine' which can now be done at home again any good vet can help you through the process.

What advice would you give to the ones who would like to move with a dog, a cat or any other pet?
If you do not have a Pet Passport get one from your vet.

It is recommeded that you do a general health check-up of your pet 24-48h before you travel, your vet will write all the information into the Pet Passport and give you a travel certificate. Within Schengen you will probably not be checked by the authorities.

If you are travelling with a cat buy a good harness and cat lead for travel and train your cat to walk on a lead so you can go for walks.

travelling by train
book your ticket so that you have at least 1-2 hours between trains, this will give you time to let your pet strech it's legs and go to the toilet - take your time if you can. If travelling on the night train between Budapest and Munich this train stops for about 3 hour in Saltzberg, double check with the ticket inspector, get off the train and take your pet for a long walk.

Travelling by car
For the sake of your pet try to stop every 3-4 hours so your pet can stretch it's legs and go to the toilet. Give your pet lots to drink but reduce food so they don't get uncomfortable bowels. If it's hot roll down the windows, if it's cold make sure the car is not too cold or too warm. Never leave your pet unattended whilst travelling, they may be disorentated or scared.

Before flying sit down with your vet for advice as they will know whether is it better to sedate your pet or not or if other travel drugs, training tools should be used. Prepare your pet by getting them used to the travel crate, let them sleep in it for several weeks before you travel. Make sure the travel crate has familiar smells in it and take a spare 'smelley' blanket in case your pet does the toilet or vomits during the journey.

NEVER TRAVEL without talking to your vet first. It may cost money to talk to a vet but what you learn could be very important for your pet once you are on the road.

Do not let your pet scavange at all you do not know what they will be eating.

Make your dog special sandwiches as these are easier to transport than dog food, and your dog may not want to eat much anyway.

Have at least 2 or more litres of water for your pet and a travel drinking bowl as they will need to drink. Offer water every time you stop even if your pet is not thirsty.

From a seasoned pet traveller (within the EU only)


Hi Zabz!

Thanks for this brilliant contribution :one


We brought our dog from the United States to Hungary. So if anyone needs tips on flying I can give you more details about that. There are SO many different rules and regulations that it really depends on where you are coming from and where you are going and what form of transportation you are using.

The airlines themselves have lots of regulations such as certificate of fitness to fly and crate type/carrier.

For a cat/small dog in a crate/carrier its worth buying puppy training pads and line the bottom of the crate with them (maybe held in place by tape).  Many airlines insist on free access to water (which inevitabley spills) so these pads mean your pet is always sitting on something dry. Also they may urinate in fear and again it means they are dry and not smelly

We used a water bottle instead of a bowl (the kind like for hampsters) they make big ones. And it seems to work the best. And leak the least.

I had the hamster bottle and a special crate drinking bowl as I had heard some airlines will let you use the hamster bottle and some won't.  BA wouldn't let me use the hamster bottle as they said it was not for cats!!!!!!! I think it is a lottery who you get at the airport to be honest as the truth is the cats were not going to drink from either and the hamster bottle would not have made such a mess.

I dread having to take them back to the UK again

If I every have to take my beasts back to the UK I will try to find a friend with a car or even rent a car. Although it's a long journey I feel more secure knowing what is going on rather than letting my pets go in the baggage hold.
Travelling outside Europe is a lot more complex and you can't always drive, I feel sorry for both pets and owners that have to do long-hawl.

Actually, I'd love a little insight on the steps you had to take in order to successfully get your animal(s) here.

I'm in Budapest now, but heading home in a few days to spend a month and a half getting everything ready to be moved back here - my little four legged furry friends included.

JonnyWhatshisface :

Actually, I'd love a little insight on the steps you had to take in order to successfully get your animal(s) here.

You should contact the USDA APHIS (Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service) for details. Your pets will need to get a micro chip installed, vaccinated and officially certified for travel to Europe. See also: … sts_TX.pdf

We are planning to bring our 5 dogs to Hungary early next year, but I believe 2 may be regarded as 'dangerous', our 10 year old Rottweiler & 3 year old Staffordshire Terrier, both family pets & both neutered.

Can anyone provide any clarity as to whether will be allowed into Hungary & any special conditions we have to meet?


desertbhoy :

I believe 2 may be regarded as 'dangerous'

You can buy Rottweiler puppies here. I see, nor do I know of any (but I can be wrong) regulation preventing their import as your pet unless they do not pass the required physical and medical conditions for importing a dog into Europe.

Dogs in Hungary are often seen as tools (e.g. guard dogs), not as pets. I have seen people with "vacation" homes that just leave their dog in a fenced yard alone for home security. Some local being hired to "throw" food at them from time to time. So a Rottweiler is probably just going to be seen as a security tool.

Getting to rent a place that allows such a pet will be another matter all together of course. And local communities have the right to restrict pet ownership (such as the number of dogs you can have -- that number is two (2) in my village).

desertbhoy :

Can anyone provide any clarity as to whether will be allowed into Hungary & any special conditions we have to meet?

You will have to comply with EU regulations first. Then any specific Hungarian regulations. Your local vet will be the best one to answer this question regarding EU regulations (as they are standard). He should also be able to do the research for you regarding Hungarian and special regulations as your departure location may incur different requirements than others.

Thanks for the info. My dogs are definitely family pets, and I would not dump them in the UAE, as often happens with expats here. We have a home in Hungary where the dogs will be whilst we are there & will travel with us if we are away for any period of time.

I will follow up with our local vet & also planning to visit a Hungarian vet on our next visit.

Thanks again

desertbhoy :

Thanks for the info. My dogs are definitely family pets, and I would not dump them in the UAE, as often happens with expats here. We have a home in Hungary where the dogs will be whilst we are there & will travel with us if we are away for any period of time.

I will follow up with our local vet & also planning to visit a Hungarian vet on our next visit.

Thanks again

I think you'll almost certainly need a rabies certificate and tests for the dogs. 

Many people do not look after their animals at all and let them roam around. Dogs in particular have been known to form packs in the forest and chase people.  There are rabid foxes in the hills around Budapest. Sometimes (quite rarely) you see helicopters dropping vaccinated bait for them.

Be careful with vets here.  Our kids' hamster was put down as having fatal disease but when Mrs Fluffy checked into it in a bit more detail we found it was probably only suffering from a vitamin deficiency.

I had a similar experience here in the UAE with a vet when my Rottie was having problems with his back legs. The vet thought he knew what the problems was, but needed to put the dog down & do an autopsy to be sure! Muppet! 6 sessions with my chiropractor & he was on the move again.

I don't suppose anyone can recommend a trusted vet in Debrecen?


Just wondering if you ever brought your dogs to Hungary and if so did you have any problems bringing your Staffordshire Terrier?  My husband and I are looking to possibly move there and we have a Dogo Argentino and a Pitbull Terrier.  I've had a hard time trying to find breed restrictions online.

ksallee - Excellent, helpful link. Thank you! … el-hungary

I brought both my dog and my cat with me to Hungary. There are no issues with Staffordshire Terriers, nor any other bully breed, here in HU.

The tricky part was getting the paperwork that nobody bothered to check (minus the airport in the US).

You will need a certificate from the Department of Agriculture, no older than 10 days by the time you arrive. You'll also need them to provide you with the necessary paperwork for entering Hungary. The forms will be in Hungarian AND english, and will be a 1:1 - so he/she (the vet) will have to fill out the paperwork first in English, then transfer the same answers to the same boxes on the Hungarian version.

Your best bet is to contact the US Department of Agriculture, and they can get you on your way with it. :)

In about a year, my friend will be traveling to Budapest from los Angeles. How hard is the flight on the dog and is it better or worse to leave her at home than to take her. Your input is highly valued

Big dog? Small dog? Short- / snub- nosed dog?
Going for a short vacation or is this a long-term move?
Thanks for adding important details!

Exactly , not worth putting the poor dog into cargo hold on a long haul flight if it is just for a short trip.
My bro and SIL are both airline mechanics in the US.
My bro told me a ton of horror tales about pets in cargo hold, they are suppose to give them water at certain stops depending on how many hours they have been traveling, If you knew the way it really goes you would never send a pet unless you could take in the cabin with you. Most of those airport workers don't want to mess with getting close to a frightened dog.
I flew my big Doberman to Hawaii from Cal. poor boy , he was so stressed out even though the vet gave me some light meds to relax him,when he arrived in Honolulu, he was crying and moaning, had a comfy sheep skin blanket in his carried with him to keep him warm( never put a pet in cargo hold in the winter, no heating) the blanket was ripped into a thousand pieces, all shredded up.
On thinking it over it was not good to give him anything that he could of swallowed.That blanket could of killed him.
I was not allowed to touch him and comfort him due to Hawaii's quarantine rules at that time. ( 4 months of lock up) I was taken into a back room where I could talk to him but I was not allowed to touch him until he had some tests run, after 5 days. Sad thing to want to comfort your pet and not being allowed to do so.
We later moved to Hilo and he was again put in cargo hold for the short flight. When we arrived at HIlo's airport some jerky baggage handler's had left his carrier with him in it out on the tarmac in the sun. I had to get angry and make them go out on the field and bring his carrier into the airport.
Flew him home after a couple of years, was again in a sad state when we reached LAX. All this on a 6 hour flight.
My DIL brought both her dog and cat to Vegas from Budapest, they were not in such a sad state as my dog had been. Of course he was a bit spoiled and her pets were lucky to be feed on time. I am a softy when it comes to animals and hate to see the suffer unless there  is nothing else to be done.
They also don't feed pets on these long flights, don't want them to get sick in the hold.
Silly me I met my DIL at the airport with water, dishes and food for her pets, they were starving.
My HU friends brought their female Dobbie to HU from the east coast of the US. It was a one way trip and I was told it was super hard on her as well.
This from a dog who had been shot and attacked by a group of male dogs in the US, she was tough but still it took her weeks to recover from the long haul flight to HU. She recovered faster from some redneck farmer shooting her then she did from the flight.
Unless it is either a long time or a one way trip, I would seriously think about just putting her pet in a good kennel.

Probably came off as a crazy lady but when it comes to a beloved pet, only you know what is best for them.
I really did experience first hand how laid back and sloppy those who are in charge of your pet during and after flight can be.
When we arrived at HIlo airport from Honolulu we picked up our luggage and went to the package area to get our dog. No where to be found, the stupid baggage handler's had taken him off the flight and left him all alone on the runway in the sun for over an hour. They had unloaded suitcases and forgot about him.
My bro said they usually do not even bother to tie the pet carrier to anything solid during the flight, they shift and slide all over with the baggage, on a rough, long flight it is just miserable for them.
My German friend in Vegas got papers to show her huge Mastiff is a care dog, he can lay on the ground under her feet during flights.
Of course she only takes him back and forth to her home in Hawaii and Vegas.

Hi i saw your advice on bringing a Pet to Hungary.

Would you be able to tell me when i arive at Budapest Airport from Philippines and YES I HAVE the Pet passport and all other vaccinations paperwork, WHAT HAPPENSD AT BUDAPEST?

I cannot see where to get an IMPORT certificate or who to actually see on arrival.

I cannot imagine you just show the immigration officer your pet.

The internet and the hungarian Autrhorities do not seem to have any docyumnetation on their websites what to do ON ARRIVAL at the airport or what documnets you need.

Can you help as you have done this before?

thanking you


Excellent question -- I hope our friends reply!
According to the website,, Pets entering by air from non-EU countries must do so at the Border Inspection Post at the international airport in Budapest, Debrecen and Sarmellek.

But to your point, where exactly is the "Border Inspection Post"?  I don't know.
I asked a similar question last year and was told by someone that you pick up your dog after customs.  I can't imagine that you'd have to carry your dog before the customs check.  So somewhere after that...

A quick update on my experience.
The US is done on a state by state basis.  Generally you get your state-approved veterinarian to validate your pet's health within 10 days of the date of travel. The pet doesn't need every vaccination, but for a dog, an ID chip that is ISO compliant and current rabies is essential.  Your vet sends the paperwork off to the state office within that 10 day travel window.  The official state veterinarian stamps your pet's health papers. You should be ready for travel to the EU now.

When I went to the airport, the airliner did not ask for my pet's papers at all, nor verify that I even had them. When I arrived at Hungary, I couldn't see where the pet inspection might be, so I asked at the lost luggage info center and they said the pet would come out on the luggage belt. However unlikely I may have thought that answer, I stood by the rubber luggage flaps at the beginning of the belt and within 5 minutes, a luggage handler stuck his head through and asked (in Hungarian) if someone had a dog. I said I did and he did indeed put it on the belt for me to grab. With my luggage and dog in crate in hand, I was expecting some inspection point, but no, I literally just walked out of the airport.  Dog walked around a bit and off home I went.

I did take my dog to a local veterinarian the first week and she got a combination booster shot for distemper and such, and a rabies booster because although the US has a 3-year rabies vaccination, Hungary only recognizes a yearly shot. So you need to get a rabies shot every year, not every three.  The shots are recorded and health reviewed and then I received a pet passport with confirmations of all of the above, including the serial numbers of the vaccinations and such. Easy peesy really.  But I worried a lot before I reached a calm state of mind about it!

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