Pet Passports

If you want to travel abroad with your pet you need to get a Pet Passport as this will help you avoid long quarantine periods when you return.  The Pet Travel Scheme (PETS) is designed to stop the spread of rabies and other diseases while still allowing your pet to travel.  From 1st January 2012 all pet cats, dogs and ferrets can enter or re-enter the UK from any country in the world without quarantine provided they meet the scheme criteria.  Rabbits or rodents that are travelling around the EU do not need one as they are not subject to any requirements with regard to rabies.

The criteria for your pet cat, dog or ferret is:

They must be fitted with a microchip and once this has been done they need to be vaccinated against rabies.

Your pet will need to be issued with a Pet Passport

There will need to be a gap of at least 21 days from the date of the first rabies vaccination before re-entering the UK or travelling to another country.

If you are travelling with a dog you will need to ensure it is treated for tapeworm 1-5 days before returning to the UK.

Finally, your pet will need to travel into the UK on a PETS-approved sea, air or rail route.

When you get your Pet Passport it will contain the details of you (the owner), the pet, including the microchip number, rabies vaccination and blood test details.  There are also sections to record the tapeworm treatments required for entry to the UK.  You can even have a scary passport photo of your pet included although this is optional.

If you do plan to go abroad with your pet, one thing to remember, you must book your return journey home with one of the PETS approved carriers on a PETS approved route.  There is a limited amount of space and it is allocated on a first come first served basis.  Make sure you book in plenty of time or your pet won’t be able to travel. Also, when returning to the UK the Pet Passport will be checked and if there is any paperwork missing or the pet has not had the correct checks and vaccinations, it could be taken into quarantine

If you would like more information about the approved carriers and routes, please click here

Finally, if you are taking your pet abroad you need to ensure it will be comfortable during the journey. Here are a few tips:

Make sure you get a carrying container that is big enough for your pet.  Before the trip, let your pet try it out and get used to it.  Put a familiar cushion or blanket in there as this will help your pet to settle.  The carrier should be well ventilated and there should be enough room for the animal to move around.  Also, ensure it has enough food and water for the trip with easily refillable containers for longer journeys.

If it’s going to be a long journey make sure your pet is fit and healthy enough to do it.

Make sure you feed your pet about 2 hours before the trip.  Nothing too heavy.

Make sure your pet has had a walk and been to the toilet before travelling.

Below are more links to the Defra website where you will find lots of other useful information about travelling with your pet.   If you have any questions about getting a passport for your pet please call us at the clinic, email at or post a message on our Facebook page 

Traveling with your pet –

List of countries and territories –

Bringing pets into the UK –

A True 24 Veterinary Service

At Cherrydown Vets we treat your pets how we would want our own pets to be treated. Their health and wellbeing is our number one priority.   Whether it’s a cat, a dog, a ferret, a hamster or a rabbit, whenever you bring your pet to see us we will give them the best possible care no matter what time of day or night.  We can promise this as we offer a TRUE 24 hour veterinary service.

By this we mean, if your pet is seriously ill outside of normal opening hours you can call our Basildon clinic and arrange to come in and get your pet examined.  Also, if your pet has to stay with us overnight, they will be cared for by our own vets and nursing staff.  There is no need for you to travel across Essex trying to find an emergency vet who you and your pet have probably never met before.  Your pet will be kept at the Basildon clinic for as long as they need to get well and will not be sent to another vets for them to be looked after while we are closed. We do it all in-house.

We also have a 24 hour resident nurse who looks after your pets throughout the night making sure they are not lonely or afraid.  If you want to call us in the middle of the night to check up on your pet, there will be someone on the other end of the line to reassure you and tell you how your pet is doing.  We are one of the only practices in the area to offer this.  If you need us we will be there for you 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.  To us your pets are like one of the family.


Even though you may have the cleanest pet in the world and your house is sparkling, your furry friend may still get fleas.

It is commonly assumed that fleas jump from one animal to another but that is not the case. Pets generally pick up fleas from infested areas such as the local park, your own garden or any place where animals with fleas (hedgehogs, foxes or another cat or dogs) can be found.

Fleas are tiny, dark brown creatures which feed on your pet by sucking their blood. They move around on the surface of the skin, dodging between the hairs and are difficult to see.  They can cause great discomfort to your pet as some animals are sensitive to flea bites and can have an allergic reaction. This can lead to more serious skin problems such as an infection due to excessive scratching.

If your pet become infested with fleas,  scratching may not be the only issue they face. As fleas feed on blood,  young or frail animals can become weak, flea larvae can become infected with tapeworm eggs and if your pet eats an infected flea when it is being groomed it can become host to this parasite. Fleas can also spread diseases. Myxomatosis can be spread by fleas and this can be serious for rabbits.

There are few things you can do to check for fleas. Groom your pet using a fine tooth comb over a white surface or some kitchen towel. If fleas or flea droppings are present, they will drop onto the surface. If you think you have flea droppings, add a few drops of water to them and if they go a reddish-brown colour then there is a good chance your pet has fleas. Another good idea is to get a flea spray that you can use around your home.

If you believe there is a problem with fleas we suggest you speak to our vets or nurses about the best course of action for your pet.