Instructions on completing the Health Certificate for the commercial movement into the European Union (EU) from Canada of dogs, cats and ferrets


  • Corrections on the health certificate cannot be made with white-out. Where necessary, corrections can be made by crossing out and initialing the change. If at all possible, it is preferable to re-print the document and fill it anew.
  • The document must be printed on letter sized paper (8.5 x 11 in).
  • The certificate must be signed in blue ink.
  • Some sections will require strike-outs (indicated by the reference keep as appropriate) and are performed by tracing a single straight line (the use of a ruler is highly recommended) through the applicable text. Each strike-out must be initialled by the person who performed it. It is important that strike-outs only be made in sections that permit them, otherwise, the certificate may be rendered invalid. The strike-out must be made in a manner that still allows the underlying text to be read.
  • The date format indicated in the certificate must be followed.

Part I: Details of dispatched consignment

Section I.1 – Consignor: The consignor is the person responsible for the animal(s) in Canada. Enter the name and the coordinates (address and phone number) of this person in Canada.

Section I.2 – Certificate reference number: Please leave this section blank as this number is assigned by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) District Office at the time of endorsement.

Section I.3 – Central Competent Authority: As the CFIA is the competent authority in all cases, this section has been pre-filled.

Section I.4 – Local Competent Authority: Please leave this section blank as it will be filled by the CFIA with District of (district name inserted here).

Section I.5 – Consignee: The consignee is the person responsible for the animal(s) once arrived in the European Union. Enter the name and the coordinates of this person in the EU.

Section I.7 – Country of Origin: As it is Canada in every case, this section has been pre-filled.

Section I.9 – Country of destination: Enter the appropriate code for the EU member state of destination from this list: Austria AT; Belgium BE; Bulgaria BG; Cyprus CY; Czech Republic CZ; Denmark DK; Estonia EE; Finland FI; France FR; Germany DE; Greece EL; Hungary HU; Ireland IE; Italy IT; Latvia LV; Lithuania LT; Luxembourg LU; Malta MT; Netherlands NL; Poland PL; Portugal PT; Romania RO; Slovakia SK; Slovenia SL; Spain ES; Sweden SE; and the United Kingdom/Northern Ireland UK

Section I.10 – Region of destination: Please leave this section blank.

Section I.11 – Place of origin: Enter the Canadian owner's / facility's name and address. For the Approval number, enter the number given by the District Office or leave blank for entry by the CFIA. Continue to add places of origin if more than one.

Section I.12 – Place of destination: Enter the Name and Address of the EU destination. Leave Approval number blank.

Section I.13 – Place of loading: City and province where the animal(s) is/are leaving the place of holding.

Section I.14 – Date of departure: Date the animal(s) is/are scheduled to leave Canada.

Section I.15 – Means of transport: Please give all details on the means of transport, e.g. flight number, ship name, etc.

Section I.16 – Entry BIP in EU: The exporter will need to work with the importer to determine the BIP code for the country in which the animal(s) will enter the EU. BIP codes can be found in Annex I.

Section I.18 – Description of commodity: In this section, only the species (common names) is entered: dog(s) and/or cat(s) and/or ferret(s). Do not write the name(s) of the animal(s) or any further details.

Section I.19 – Commodity code (HS code): This section is pre-filled with the applicable code. No additional information needs to be entered.

Section I.20 – Quantity: If only one species of animal is listed on the certificate, a single number needs to be entered: 1, 2, 3, etc. If the certificate is used for pets of various species, please indicate how many of each species: 1 dog, 2 cats.

Section I.22 – Number of packages: Insert number of cages in shipment.

Section I.23 – Identification of container/seal number: Not mandatory, but if the crate has a seal, place the number here.

Section I.25 - Commodities certified for: Specify here the end-use of the animals – pets for companion animals; approved bodies, for example research animals; and others for all other end-uses.

Section I.27 – For import or admission into EU: Please check the box.

Section I.28 – Identification of the commodities: Each animal must be listed individually in this section.

Species: the scientific name must be indicated: Canis lupus familiaris (dog), Felis silvestris catus (cat) or Mustela putorius furo (ferret).

Identification system: microchip or tattoo.

Date of application and/or reading of the transponder or tattoo: this date must predate all other procedures listed in the certificate. In other words, the rabies vaccine(s), titre test (if applicable) and parasite treatment must all be done on or after the transponder application or reading date. The EU does not consider valid any procedure done before the application of a microchip. In cases where the date of application is not known, a reading (before any other procedures) will qualify.

Identification number: the microchip or the tattoo number (where acceptable) must be written in its entirety.

Date of birth: if the exact date of birth is not known, a complete (dd/mm/yyyy) estimated date of birth is acceptable. It is important to note that the date of birth entered on the export certificate should be the same as the date indicated in supporting documents.

Due to the significant amount of information to write in a relatively small space, it is acceptable to provide all the information requested as a "sentence" divided by forward slash symbols (/). As an example, a dog could be entered as follows:

Canis lupus familiaris/M/Microchip/red with white markings/Nova Scotia Duck Toller/01/02/2011/123456789101112/25/12/2010

Part II – Certification

This section contains all the requirements imposed by the EU in order for the animal(s) to enter commercially. Careful attention must be paid to ensure that all requirements are met and appropriately documented on the certificate. The following information is to clarify or provide further information on the statements contained in the certificate.

Article II.1:

come from holdings or businesses described in Box I.11 which are registered by the competent authority and are not subject to any ban on animal health grounds, where the animals are examined regularly and which comply with the requirements ensuring the welfare of the animals held;

This section requires that the holding or business (and individual pet owner) is registered with the competent authority, the CFIA in Canada. The Local District Office and/or Area Office will record the information of the breeder/individual pet owner and assign a number that will be used in Box I.11. The statement pertaining to the animal being examined regularly refers to the exam performed by the private veterinarian while preparing this certificate.

Article II.2:

showed no signs of diseases and were fit to be transported for the intended journey at the time of examination by a veterinarian authorised by the competent authority within 48 hours prior to the time of dispatch;

Please note that the time required for examination has been increased from 24 hours to 48 hours.

Article II.3:

First option: are destined for a body, institute or centre described in Box I.12 and approved in accordance with Annex C to Council Directive 92/65/EEC, and come from a territory or third country listed in Annex II to Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) No 577/2013.]

This option is for approved bodies, ie. research institutions. Annex C of Council Directive 92/65/EEC details conditions governing the approval of bodies, institutions or centres.

Second option: or [II.3. were at least 12 weeks old at the time of vaccination against rabies and at least 21 days have elapsed since the completion of the primary anti-rabies vaccination carried out in accordance with the validity requirements set out in Annex III to Regulation (EU) No 576/2013 of the European Parliament and of the Council, and any subsequent revaccination was carried out within the period of validity of the preceding vaccination; and]

[II.3.1 they come from a territory or third country listed in Annex II to Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) No 577/2013 and details of the current anti-rabies vaccination are provided in the table]
[II.3.1 they come from or are scheduled to transit through, a territory or third country listed in Annex I to Commission Decision 2004/211/EC or in Part I of Annex II to Commission Regulation (EU) No 206/2010, and a rabies antibody titration test, carried out on a blood sample taken by the veterinarian authorised by the competent authority not less than 30 days after the preceding vaccination and at least three months prior to the date of issue of this certificate, proved an antibody titre equal to or greater than 0.5 IU/ml and any subsequent revaccination was carried out within the period of validity of the preceding vaccination, and the details of the current anti-rabies vaccination and the date of sampling for testing the immune response are provided in the table below:

In this case a single option must be chosen for II.3.1, depending on the routing chosen to travel to the EU from Canada. Annex II to Commission Regulation (EU) No. 577/2013 lists Canada so it is expected that the first article will apply in most cases as the majority of movements are direct to the EU, without travelling through other countries. It should be noted that the first article also applies when the animal transits via the USA, as the country is also listed in Annex II. This option also applies to an animal that was legally imported into Canada from a country not listed in Annex II, irrelevant to the length of stay in Canada, provided that the certificate can be adequately completed. If the vaccine is a re-vaccination, the wait period of 21 days is not required, but proof that it is a re-vaccination must be supplied if the animal travels within the first 21 days post-booster. In this case, the details for the previous vaccine must be provided in the addendum supplied at the end of the certificate.

The second option would apply if the animal was not transported directly to the EU and transited through a country not appearing in Annex II.

Completion of the table:

  • Transponder or tattoo alphanumeric code of the animal: self-explanatory.
  • Date of vaccination: self-explanatory
  • Name and manufacturer of the vaccine: self-explanatory
  • Batch number: self-explanatory
  • Validity of vaccination from/to: in case of primary vaccination (very first vaccination in the life of the animal, or first vaccination after the insertion of a microchip), the from date is the establishment of protective immunity (the time needed by the immune system to adequately develop defense against the rabies virus), which cannot be less than 21 days after vaccination. In case of booster vaccination, when performed before the end of validity of the previous vaccination, the from date is usually the date of administration. The to date represents the end of the validity in the animal, based on manufacturer's recommendation. It is not the expiry date of the vial of vaccine.
  • Date of blood sampling: a date is only entered there if the second option of article II.3.1 was chosen.
  • Unused lines in the rabies vaccination table should be struck out and initialled.

Article II.4 – Attestation of anti-parasitic treatment: This section is applicable to dogs only, in which case a single option is selected. If the certificate is issued for cats and/or ferrets only, this entire section can be struck out.

[II.4. are dogs destined for a Member State listed in Annex I to Commission Delegated Regulation (EU) No 1152/2011 and have been treated against Echinococcus multilocularis, and the details of the treatment carried out by the administering veterinarian in accordance with Article 7 of Commission Delegated Regulation (EU) No 1152/2011 are provided in the table below.]

This option applies to dogs travelling to Malta, Finland, Ireland and the United Kingdom.

The treatment must be applied by a veterinarian within a period of not more than 120 hours and not less than 24 hours before the time of the scheduled entry into the EU. The drug used must be approved in Canada, must contain the appropriate dose of praziquantel or an equivalent product, which bears a label claim against Echinococcus multilocularis.

[II.4. have not been treated against Echinococcus multilocularis.]

This option applies to dogs travelling to other Member States than Malta, Finland, Ireland and the United Kingdom.

Completion of the table:

  • Transponder or tattoo number of the dog: self-explanatory.
  • Name and manufacturer of the product: self-explanatory.
  • Date (dd/mm/yyyy) and time of treatment (00:00): as the time requirement is precise (24 to 120 hours), it is imperative to indicate the time. To avoid potential confusion, please use the 24 hour clock.
  • Administering veterinarian / Name in capitals, stamp and signature: to be considered valid, the treatment must be administered by a veterinarian or in the presence of the veterinarian. It cannot be prescribed by a veterinarian and administered by the owner at home. A stamp is not required but a clinic stamp can be used if available.
  • When entering the treatment in table referred to under II.4, unused lines should be left blank (and not struck-out) as the certificate can be used for further movement once in the EU, which may require repeat anti-parasitic treatments.

Explanatory notes: there are a significant number of self-explanatory notes detailed in the certificate and they should all be carefully considered.

Signature blocks: the certificate has space for two (2) different signatures:

Official veterinarian/Authorised veterinarian: In Canada, for pets to the EU, a Licensed Veterinarian is considered an Authorised Veterinarian.

Competent Authority: this means a Veterinarian employed by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency. It is essential to obtain this signature prior to the movement of the animal(s). Please contact your local District Office in order to schedule an appointment for endorsement. This signature is the very last entry on the certificate before the animal(s) depart from Canada. No modification to the certificate is allowed after CFIA endorsement. Each page of the certificate will also be stamped at the time of endorsement.

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