Travel regulations are not designed to protect pets against parasites. Their primary purpose is to protect human health and prevent the spread of exotic diseases between countries. Pet parasite protection is therefore an additional consideration when travelling with your pet. It is important to protect your pet against the parasites and disease prevalent in the areas where you travel, many of which can transmit serious or potentially fatal infections.
We strongly recommend discussing preventative treatments with your vet at least three months before you travel.
We can give you advice specific to your area(s) of travel and provide the best protection against parasites for your pet whilst abroad. Some of the main parasites to consider in Europe (risk of contracting infections varies in different countries and areas) are:
Tapeworm: Echinococcus Multiocularis is a type of tapeworm found abroad which is not yet present in the uk. Echinococcus can be present in your pet without any symptoms, which is why regular treatment is important. Presently, on the Pet Passport Scheme, a vet must administer a tapeworm treatment (dogs only) not less than 24hrs and not more than 120hrs (1-5 days) before their scheduled return to the UK .
Leishmaniasis (spread by Sandfly) is often deadly. Treatment can be expensive and will only control the symptoms, not cure the disease. In Europe there are 2.5 million infected dogs, so prevention is the best protection and a vaccination is available. We also recommend using a special medicated collar or spot-on to reduce the chance of exposure (Sandfly bites) alongside the vaccination of healthy dogs for enhanced resistance to infection.
Heartworm (spread by mosquitoes) is also endemic in many parts of Europe and, if you’re going further afield there are even more parasites to consider, many of which can also be spread to people, so if you are travelling with your pet, please talk to us first!