Traveling with Your Cat: From Philippines to EU Part 1 – Document Requirements

Every time I think about our great move to EU (Germany, for that matter) this year, it always makes me feel accomplished and relieved. And no, it’s not about me moving myself and my life here. It is because we managed to bring our 6 beloved cats with us, in one trip, from one side of the world to another.

Traveling with your pets can be really stressful, but it doesn’t have to be. You just need to be organized, well-informed, and of course, plan carefully. I’d like to share my experience and write it as informative, concise and as simple as I can with the hopes that it will help you have an idea of what to take care of in the event that you want to move or travel with your pets to EU.

Nishi in the plane, sneaking out of her carrier.
Nishi in the plane, sneaking out of her carrier.

Because I want to be as informative as I can, this blog entry will be divided in 3 parts:

Part 1 – Cat Document Requirements.
Part 2 – The Rabies Titer Test.
Part 3 – Basic Airline Requirements and Choosing Your Airline.

A special note though; I’ll be writing about my experience moving my cats from the Philippines to EU (Germany). Every county have their own animal import/export rules and regulation and this blog entry will be particularly about EU countries. 

Paperworks/Documents Required:

1. A Pet Microchip.
– This is not a document, but this is one of the requirements. Your cat should have a microchip installed. This can be done by your local veterinarian.

2. A Rabies Titer Test Certificate (Rabies anti-body titration test)
– Your cat’s blood sample has to be tested by an EU-approved rabies serology laboratory. Unfortunately, there’s no accredited laboratory that can perform this in the Philippines. You can get the list of accredited laboratory here. Note that they have to pass.

3. Your cat’s vaccination card.
– Anti-rabies vaccine is a requirement for your pet to enter EU. Your cat’s vaccination card will serve as a proof of anti-rabies vaccine that your cat had. Make sure that your cat’s vaccination is up to date.

4. Health Certificate.
– This is issued by your local veterinarian/veterinary clinic.

5. Export permit from Bureau of Animal Industry.
– This can be taken care of your local veterinary clinic.  The export permit is only valid for 10 days. I suggest that you process this together with the vet’s health certificate a few days before you leave. In my experience, it only took a day to process this. I took care of this 5 days before our departure.

6. EU’s Pet Import Certificate form.
– This should be filled out by your veterinarian. I took care of this together with the Health Certificate and Export Permit so they are all dated together. You can get the form here.

If you want to personally check the EU’s requirements, you can read more from European Commission website.

Now, on to Part 2.

A Rescued Cat Called Nishi

I never thought that a little creature will change my life forever.

Mark and I were walking to the restaurant when I heard a weird noise. It’s like a crying bird. The street was still busy so I couldn’t really tell where it’s coming from. Mark didn’t hear it so I thought I was nothing and proceeded to dinner.

After 2 hours, we headed back home taking the same street and I heard the same crying bird again. We tried to look for it, and there, we found this tiny calico kitten, about 2 weeks old, crying non-stop while laying in a small ditch at the middle of the walk way in Leviste St. Imagine, it was a busy evening, and yet nobody gave a shit to even pick up and put this little creature somewhere safe. Mark panicked and immediately picked up the kitten. She was very weak and filthy with street dirt. I didn’t know what to do. I didn’t want to touch the little kitten as it freaks me out. I never had a pet before. We both didn’t know what to do with her because our building admin doesn’t allow pets in the condo. But we couldn’t just leave her like that. We took her to our building and was immediately stopped by the guards. We talked to them and promise to take her to a shelter the next day, and that we are just going to feed it.

The pot hole where we found Nishi.

Since Mark have experience with cats, he knew that cow’s milk is not good for them so he just cleaned the little kitten, and then googled for a milk substitute just to get through the night. Then we took the shade off our lamp and used it to warm the little kitten up. Everything improvised.

Nishi’s first night in her imporvised shelter box.


I was very stressed that evening because I was afraid the kitten might not make it through the night. I was also stressed that we don’t know any shelter that would take in the cat. Plus, this kitten cries so much and so loud – I was stressed to be confronted by the guards again and get me pressured to get rid of the kitten.

The next day, we took her to the vet for check up. She was a strong kitten. She didn’t even sip the improvised milk that Mark prepared for her, but she seemed to be OK. She was checked up, got her nails trimmed, and got kitten replacement milk for her. She also had been tested for worms etc.

Nishi enjoying the sun and the park, a month after her rescue.

And that’s where it all started. We then decided to keep her, and kept her a secret :). I fell in love with Nishi. This little cat changed it all. She has awakened my sense of compassion and my total mindset about animals in general. For a person who has never had a pet in her whole life, you’d think it would be difficult to adapt. But I did.  She has opened my eyes to become a better human being living in this world. Nishi will be my forever inspiration.