Pets in Ireland

Hello everyone,

Many of us in Ireland have four-legged friends. What about you? Do you have one or more pets? Share your experience with us!

What are the formalities to import pets in Ireland? What about pet adoption procedures in the country? Did you bring your pet from your home country to your host country? If so, did everything turn out fine?

What do Irish think about pets? Are they comfortable with dogs, cats or unusual pets?

Share your advice!


HI everyone,

Thanks for the really interesting e-mail regarding pets.

Actually, I dont have a pet and don't plan on getting one and have no idea what the formalities are for transporting or owning a pet.  I think that there are websites that might provide more clarity on this issue.

I hope this might be helpful for you .


We brought our dog with us from the US. Aer Lingus will only deal with ONE company. I understand that. The regulations are so rigid and complex and the stakes so high, both for the individual dog and the rabies-free, unprotected animals of Ireland, that the airline would quickly find themselves in a swamp of no redeeming value.

Nonetheless... we paid $1,400 to this company, plus about $900 for the vet bills required to meet regulations. The company made our lives one living hell for months. We needed to train our dog to the shipping crate so I cleared purchase of a proper crate with them two months prior to departure. Two days before we left I got a phone call from a woman, a subcontractor, wanting to know if the crate had holes on the back. Seems they couldn't ship the dog without this. I was moving in two days and had been very careful to ensure we had the right crate two months earlier, so I was a bit stressed by this new wrinkle. She told me she'd tell the driver to bring a drill. Seems they've had to drill holes in the back of the crate before because of the company's negligence.

The day before we left--when I should have been packing--I got a phone call from a nice young man in Dublin who informed me the company had only just told him the dog would be arriving. The dog had to be in the crate four hours before the plane departed. The flight is at least six hours. Nice Young Man couldn't guarantee he'd be able to find a vet to clear him, which meant the dog would spend an extra three hours sitting on the tarmac until normal business hours. I burst into tears, called the subcontractor crate-drill woman back for advice.

We worked it out, no thanks to the company we'd paid all that money to. But because my packing was so interrupted by their shoddy work I ended up leaving behind my laptop, plug adapters, Irish phone and all the other electronics I need for my work sitting neatly in a row where I'd lined them up so I wouldn't lose track of them. This complicated my life for months after our move.

Now that we're here--here being the southeastern coast--we've found it's nearly impossible to rent with a dog. We have been exceedingly lucky in that we were able to do so. But I'd hate to pin my housing on luck.

Our dog has a genetic ailment, plus he was seven years old so he was unadoptable. My serious advice to anyone contemplating moving with an animal is to find a good home in the US for your beloved pet. Seriously. If at all possible, spare them the stress and disruption and yourself the expense of an overseas move. We've since adopted a second dog here and are settled, although if we have to move... we'll really be in the soup. NO one here wants to rent to anyone with a dog.

We also had serious vet problems, thanks to a misdiagnosis on the part of a lab in the UK. Not the local vet's fault, but the dog nearly died and we spent yet another fortune in vet bills to save him. This is one expensive dog! We adopted the second on the vet's advice to lower his stress level. That part has worked out fine.

Good luck. I'd check out all options, including landing in the UK or France to avoid dealing with that company. Aer Lingus was great with the actual shipping, but I wouldn't wish that required company on a dog...


I'm planning on moving to Ireland from Portugal and I want to take my dog with me. I've already booked a flight for him (the same one has ours) and it will cost me more than 400€.
I've been looking for a place to rent and I've indeed noticed a lot of "No pets allowed". Is it really so difficult to find a house for rent that allows dogs?

Yup it is... its an additional hinderance to find a house... see message

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