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Bringing your pet to Switzerland

So you’ve just been offered a new job in Luzern – exciting times ahead! But then you start to think about your beloved pet and understandably the excitement can quickly begin to fizzle out. Thankfully bringing your pet to Switzerland is quite straightforward but as with most things it does require several steps. Before you know it you’ll have another thing checked off your list. So whether your moving to Luzern with your pet or your thinking of buying an animal from abroad here’s a few important steps to know, to make the process easier.

1. Identification

Your animal must be identified with a microchip or a tattoo (the latter is only valid if it was made before 3 July 2011). Anyone who imports a dog from abroad must have it registered in the ANIS database by a veterinarian within 10 days of its arrival.

2. Pet passport

The animals must be accompanied by a correctly completed pet passport.

3. Protection against rabies

Vaccinate your animal at least 21 days before entering the country. If a booster vaccination has been given within the validity period of the first vaccination, the waiting period does not apply. A new rule is that a first vaccination is only recognised if it has been carried out at no earlier than 12 weeks of age.

4. Young animals

Young animals up to the age of 12 weeks may be brought into Switzerland unvaccinated if they are with the mothers on which they are still dependent or if an owner’s declaration is provided to confirm that, since their birth, they have never come into contact with wild animals whose species is susceptible to rabies.

5. Dog tax

You will be expected to pay a dog tax of CHF 120.- a year to your community.

6. Dog training

You are not required to take a dog training course anymore however it is highly recommended. Here is one school we can recommend:

Also dogs imported from abroad must be presented to a veterinarian in Switzerland within 10 days of their arrival. So before you import or even buy locally, your new friend make sure to contact the Luzern canton veterinary office so that you have all the information you need before you start. They will also be able to help if you are unsure about the validity of your training course from abroad in Switzerland.