the United Kingdom shocked the world by voting to withdraw from the European
Union. As with the dissolution of most unions, the transition to full
sovereignty has not been easy. The European Union has noted that the
“Agreement,” the terms under which the United Kingdom will withdraw, should set
a withdrawal date of March 30, 2019 at the latest. While we won’t go into it,
know that Prime Minister Theresa May has had a difficult time satisfying all
parties. One U.K./E.U. perk that may be caught in the crossfire? Inter-country
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA), which dictates the
United Kingdom’s pet travel rules and initiatives, has advised pet owners
planning to travel to Northern Ireland or the European Union after Brexit to
visit the vet now.
to Northern Ireland
there are no checks on pets travelling between Northern Ireland and the
Republic of Ireland. However, Brexit negotiations are likely to impose a hard
border between the nations, meaning all pets traveling between should have
passports. Depending on the deal struck by P.M. May and E.U. officials, the
specifics of this border crossing are likely to change, possibly instituting
stronger, E.U.-imposed sanctions. For now, though, get ahead by securing your
pet passport immediately.
to the European Union
To bring a
pet from the United Kingdom to the European Union, pet parents must obtain pet
passports that show up-to-date rabies shots. Additionally, there must be a
three-week waiting period before Fido or Fluffy is cleared to travel. Currently,
U.K. pets do not require microchips to travel to the E.U. Unsurprisingly, this
is likely to change.
no-deal Brexit, U.K. pets would be treated the same as those coming from an
“unlisted country” into the European Union. This means animals must be
microchipped, have a rabies vaccination, and have a blood test to check the
efficacy of the vaccination within three months before travel. Only after these
steps can a veterinarian sign a veterinary health certificate, which has a
10-day lifespan. There is also the possibility that animals are subject to
quarantine once arriving at the destination.
Veterinary Officer Christine Middlemiss told the BBC that all pet owners who
wish to travel immediately after Brexit “consult with their vet as soon as they
can.” This is the best way to ensure pets have the correct health protection
documented and in place for all possible Brexit scenarios.
Government Shutdowns: What You Need to Know
State government shutdowns are a common occurrence in the 21st
century, with three in just the past year. In November of 2018, the Democratic
party regained majority in the House of Representatives, meaning elected
officials will need to make a greater push toward bipartisan legislation to get
congressional approval when necessary. Without bipartisan initiatives, we
predict squabbles over government funding will continue to temporarily shut
down the government. Unfortunately, this will affect those traveling with pets.
In the most
recent shutdown (December 2018 to January 2019), TSA workers continued to work
through the temporary closure. Air-traffic controllers are considered to be
essential, and airlines are privately run, which means, on the surface, nothing
will change for passengers. Unsurprisingly, what should happen in theory
doesn’t necessarily translate to practice.
government shutdown, TSA agents continue to work without pay. In most cases,
when the government is re-opened, Congress votes to pay government agents for
the time they spent working during the shutdown. However, this is not always a
guarantee. Plus, for most Americans, going without one paycheck can mean the
difference between financial comfort and catastrophe. This anger and
frustration, understandably, often leak into workplace conduct for TSA agents.
government shutdown, expect longer lines, longer waiting times, and a bit less
efficiency. Though you’ll still be able to bring Fido and/or Fluffy aboard the
plane, adjust your travel time table. Rather than arriving two hours before
your flight, show up even earlier to ensure you get through security. And
before heading out, stake out all possible secured animal relief areas to
ensure you have a place for your pet to relax before the flight.