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Pets in Spain | Expatica

Whether or not you’re adopting or shopping for pets in Spain or bringing them with you, right here’s every little thing about pet guidelines, companies, insurance coverage, and healthcare.

Like many nations, Spain is a nation of pet lovers, which displays within the cultural norms and rules. Many households, together with worldwide households, hold cats, canine, fish, birds, or different domesticated animals for companions. Nonetheless, there are lots of issues to think about when turning into a pet proprietor or when relocating to the nation together with your pet.

Due to this fact, right here’s what it is best to find out about pets in Spain, together with info on:

Pet tradition in Spain

Pets are widespread in Spain, though there are numerous guidelines and rules regarding pet possession. These guidelines usually differ throughout the autonomous communities.

Pinedo Seashore, Valencia, Spain (Photograph: Xisco Navarro/SOPA Pictures/LightRocket/Getty Pictures)

In response to the Spanish Community for the Identification of Pets (Crimson Española de Indetificación de animales de compañia, REIAC), there are round 13 million registered pets in Spain. Figures from 2019 present that 26% of households personal canine and 11% personal cats. Nevertheless, the full variety of pets in Spain, together with smaller creatures not registered, is nearer to twenty million, based on a nationwide census carried out by the veterinary affiliation, AMVAC (Asociación Madrileña de Veterinarios de Animales de Compañia) in 2017 (in Spanish). This works out at a median of over one pet per Spanish family.

In response to the census, the preferred pets in Spain had been:

  • Birds (5.3 million)
  • Canine (5.2m)
  • Fish (4m)
  • Cats (2.3m)

There have been additionally over two million different pets, together with ferrets, rabbits, reptiles, and hamsters.

Spain has guidelines prohibiting sure animals as pets, though these fluctuate throughout the communities. For instance, the Catalogue of Invasive Alien Species lists creatures together with bullfrogs, Galapagos turtles, Argentine parrots, raccoons, some breeds of hedgehog, and porcupines. Proudly owning any of those as a pet can result in a nice of as much as €2 million.

Traditionally, Spain has lagged behind many different European nations when it comes to animal welfare. It scores a C on the 2020 World Animal Safety Index, together with a D on defending domesticated animals. Nevertheless, the federal government lately created a Directorate-Common for Animal Safety and has set about bettering requirements.

Spain now ranks eighth on the 2022 Canine-Pleasant Nation Index.

Pet legal guidelines in Spain

Many pet legal guidelines in Spain fluctuate throughout the unbiased states, so examine domestically to keep away from getting a nice or worse. Moreover, new nationwide animal welfare legal guidelines got here into impact in 2022. Pets at the moment are thought of sentient beings and can’t be seized, deserted, mistreated, or faraway from the proprietor with out good purpose. New legal guidelines additionally cowl shared possession if {couples} divorce or separate.

There are plans for additional adjustments later this yr, together with:

  • Bans on placing animals down until strictly crucial
  • No animals are utilized in circuses
  • Pet shops are not allowed to promote pets
  • Harsher penalties for animal abuse
  • Introducing a brand new nationwide pet ID scheme to assist monitor pet possession

Pet laws in Spain, dogs such as pitbulls must have a leash and wear muzzles in public

In fact, you have to have appropriate lodging for pets as you can’t go away them on balconies or outdoors in uncovered areas. Canine should be stored on a lead in public locations and will not be allowed on most Spanish seashores.

The Horizontal Property Regulation in Spain (Ley de Propiedad Horizontal) protects these in residence blocks and communal buildings from noise and disturbance, together with by pets. You’ll must examine the native pet legal guidelines in case you reside in the sort of constructing.

Harmful animals

Moreover, pets in Spain, equivalent to canine and cats, should be registered, microchipped, vaccinated towards rabies, and have a well being card. You could even have a particular license for breeds of canine thought of harmful, and place them on the harmful animals’ register (Registro de Animales Potencialmente Peligrosos). They should put on a leash and muzzle in public. This is applicable to canine, equivalent to:

  • Pitbull terriers
  • Staffordshire bull terriers
  • Rottweilers
  • Fila Brasileiros
  • Akita-Inus

Nevertheless, the proposed legislation adjustments embrace not categorizing any breed of canine as a harmful animal.

Getting pets in Spain

Shopping for pets

Shopping for new pets has grow to be extra closely regulated in Spain. New rules will outlaw promoting animals apart from fish in Spanish pet shops. If you wish to purchase fish from a store in Spain, you possibly can seek for shops on Europages or listing companies, such because the Spanish Yellow Pages (in Spanish).

Woman walks her dog, dressed in a jacket, across a town square in Pamploma, Spain, while it is snowing. Pamploma, Navarra, Spain (Photograph: Eduardo Sanz/Europa Press/Getty Pictures)

Nevertheless, you possibly can nonetheless purchase pets in Spain from licensed breeders or secondhand on web sites equivalent to Milanuncios. Should you determine to get an animal from a breeder, guarantee they’ve a legitimate license. Like many different nations, Spain has an issue with unlicensed breeding and the unlawful buying and selling of animals. Once more, legal guidelines fluctuate throughout areas. For instance, it’s unlawful for personal events not registered as animal facilities to commerce with pets in Catalonia.

Getting a pet from a shelter or rescue middle

With elevated rules on the pet commerce, many animal lovers go for the extra accountable possibility of adopting a pet from an animal charity, shelter, or rescue middle. Some locations present animals without spending a dime to vetted homeowners; others cost charges. These facilities embrace:

  • Huellitas Perdidas: a misplaced pets market that gives adoption alternatives
  • P.E.P.A: an animal rescue charity dealing primarily with canine and cats (three areas nationwide)
  • Pets in Spain: gives nationwide animal rescue and rehoming
  • Undertake a Pet: a search software for pet adoption
  • Animal Rescue Spain: alternatives for pet adoption and fostering

It’s also possible to discover particulars of different animal facilities through your native municipality.

Woman adopting a rescue dog from an animal shelter

If you wish to purchase a pet from these facilities, you have to show your suitability. Usually, you’ll have to present a type of identification (e.g., passport or residence card) and pet possession particulars (if relevant). The middle will often interview you and examine your property to make sure a wholesome and secure setting for animals.

Fostering a pet

Many animal welfare charities and organizations additionally supply fostering alternatives the place you possibly can take care of an animal short-term. This may be a good way of deciding whether or not you possibly can decide to adopting a pet. Once more, the group will most likely need to interview you and examine your property. Should you undertake a pet in Spain, the host group often covers prices, equivalent to vet payments. Some organizations like P.E.P.A may even pay meals payments, if crucial.

Bringing or importing pets to Spain

Pet immigration guidelines and restrictions

You may carry as much as 5 pets to Spain. Canine, cats, and ferrets should be fitted with an ISO microchip and vaccinated towards rabies at the least 21 days earlier than journey. Moreover, pets should be 15 weeks or older once they journey.

In case you are from the European Union (EU) or a European Free Commerce Affiliation (EFTA) nation, your pet should have an EU passport. Pets from outdoors the EU/EFTA should have an animal well being certificates (translated into Spanish) signed by an official veterinarian.

In case your pet enters from a rustic with a excessive threat of rabies, it should have a titer blood check, one month after vaccination and three months earlier than departure. This may assess its immune response to the virus.

Parrot sitting on veterinarian's shoulder

Birds want an INTRA-2 vet certificates (in Spanish) if coming from the EU/EFTA.

All different pets, together with reptiles or different creatures, should have an INTRA vet certificates if coming from EU/EFTA nations.

Extra info on pets apart from canine, cats, and ferrets is accessible on the Ministry of Agriculture web site.

The place potential, it is best to journey together with your pet to Spain. In any other case, it ought to arrive inside 5 days of your entry.

Pets from outdoors the EU/EFTA area

From outdoors this area, you will want an animal well being certificates signed by a vet confirming that both:

  • The animal has undergone quarantine for 30 days earlier than touring to Spain
  • It would quarantine for 30 days upon arrival in Spain
  • It has been vaccinated towards avian flu at the least 60 days earlier than touring
  • The chicken was examined for avian flu and remoted for 14 days

Pets outdoors the EU/EFTA must arrive at a chosen passenger entry level (PEV) and be declared to the Civil Guard’s (Cuerpo de la Guardia Civil) tax division.

Touring with pets

You may journey to Spain with pets by airplane, practice, or automotive. Should you fly with pets, the airline will usually insist that you simply use a ventilated container that needs to be labeled rigorously. You’ll additionally want to offer enough meals and water for the journey.

Woman travelling with pet waits in airport lounge, looking at her phone

The Worldwide Air Transport Affiliation (IATA) units the foundations concerning the permitted sorts of pet journey containers and most world airways comply with these rules. Learn the IATA necessities earlier than you journey together with your pet overseas.

On shorter flights (lower than ten hours), many airways will enable passengers to take their small cats or canine within the cabin. Usually, the airline will solely enable one pet per passenger and a most of two pets per cabin. The container for the pet should match below the seat in entrance of you, have a water-proof backside, and enough air flow.

The Sherpa, Bergan, and SturdiBag pet carriers are all airline compliant so long as your pet suits comfortably.

There are totally different regional guidelines for touring with pets on Spanish public transport, so you will want to examine earlier than you utilize trains or buses.

Pet relocation firms

To make issues less complicated, you need to use a pet relocation firm that can take care of all the required paperwork and make sure the secure transportation of your pets. It is a good possibility in case you’re unable to journey together with your pets. Respected firms offering companies in Spain embrace:

Pet arrivals within the nation

Thankfully, your pet received’t must quarantine in case you comply with the foundations and rules. If a pet arrives with out the required vaccinations, medical checks, and well being certificates, the border authorities could quarantine it and even return it to the departure port. In excessive circumstances, they might euthanize the animal.

In case your birds weren’t vaccinated or examined towards avian flu nor quarantined for 30 days earlier than arrival, they need to quarantine for a month in Spain.

Registering pets in Spain

All canine and cats needs to be microchipped and registered in Spain at an area vet surgical procedure. Processes and prices fluctuate throughout the autonomous areas. Many animal charities and facilities additionally supply microchipping companies. Every state has its personal register, however these are coordinated nationally by the Spanish Firm Animal Identification Community (Crimson Española de Identificación de Animales de Compañía – REIAC). Spain plans to introduce a nationwide pet ID for canine and cats to centralize the pet registration course of.

In case your pet has a legible ID tattoo dated earlier than 3 July 2011, it doesn’t want a microchip.

In case your pet is taken into account a harmful animal in Spain, you have to add them to the Harmful Animals Register (Registro de Animales Potencialmente Peligroso). You are able to do this at your native city corridor or on-line. There are plans to take away all breeds of canine from this register by the tip of 2022.

Paperwork wanted

It’s also possible to select to chip and register different pets in Spain. To finish registration, you will want:

  • Your ID, for instance, a legitimate passport
  • Spanish NIE quantity
  • Your Spanish tackle and phone quantity
  • Proof of possession of your pet, when you’ve got it
  • Animal well being certificates or well being card containing particulars of vaccinations, therapy, and checkups

Prices rely on whether or not your pet wants a brand new microchip and your native authority charges, however are often between €15 to €50.

Pet passports in Spain

EU pet homeowners should now have pet passports when touring with canine, cats, or ferrets. The passports embrace:

  • Identify and tackle of the animal proprietor
  • Description of the animal (breed, intercourse, age, coloration)
  • Microchip identification quantity
  • Rabies vaccination particulars (date, validity, sort, title of the producer, and manufacturing quantity)
  • Deal with and signature of the veterinarian

You will get a pet passport from most licensed vets in Spain. The fee is often between €50 to €100. To acquire a passport, you will want to offer:

  • Your legitimate ID, for instance, a passport
  • Spanish NIE quantity
  • Proof of tackle, for instance, a latest utility invoice
  • Rabies vaccination info
  • Microchip quantity

Pets from non-EU/EFTA nations

Getting EU pet passports in lots of non-EU/EFTA nations is feasible if you need your pet to journey to Spain, though prices could also be dearer. Nevertheless, the nation doesn’t require passports for pets from different nations. Nonetheless, you will want an official animal well being certificates (translated into Spanish) signed by a licensed vet.

Pet insurance coverage in Spain

Pet insurance coverage isn’t a basic requirement in Spain. Nevertheless, it’s a worthwhile consideration to guard towards medical prices or harm attributable to a pet. As well as, you’ll want legal responsibility insurance coverage protection in case you personal a canine categorised as a harmful breed in Spain. This might be as a part of a complete pet insurance coverage coverage or below a basic civil legal responsibility insurance coverage plan. In some autonomous areas, for instance, Madrid, all canine homeowners want pet legal responsibility insurance coverage.

One other consideration is medical insurance coverage to cowl the expense of sudden vet payments in case of harm or sickness. Many insurers supply packages with totally different ranges of protection, from emergency surgical procedure prices to all-inclusive insurance policies for persistent, congenital, and hereditary situations.

Firms offering pet insurance coverage in Spain embrace:

You may examine Spanish pet medical health insurance presents on Seguros Veterinarios.

Healthcare for pets in Spain

Veterinary companies

Spanish vets ought to have a license from the Common Council of Veterinary Schools in Spain (Consejo Common de Colegios Veterinarios de España – CGCVE). You may seek for vets in your areas on the Spanish Yellow Pages (Paginas Amarillas) or native authority web sites.

Vets performing an ultrasound on a cat at the vet surgery

You’ll find vets (veterinarios) throughout Spain, often in animal facilities, clinics, and surgical procedures. They supply a wide range of companies, together with:

  • Microchipping and issuing pet passports
  • Recommendation and knowledge
  • Surgical procedure
  • Emergency care
  • Checkups and examinations
  • Neutering and spaying
  • Animal dentistry


All canine and cats in Spain should obtain a rabies vaccination and follow-up booster jabs, which needs to be yearly. No different pet vaccinations are necessary at a nationwide stage, though some autonomous communities in Spain could have extra necessities for canine and cats. Advisable vaccinations embrace:

  • Hepatitis, Parainfluenza, Distemper, and Parvovirus vaccinations for canine
  • Feline Gastroenteritis and Typhus vaccinations for cats

Additionally, if you wish to take your canine to a kennel when you find yourself happening vacation, it might want a vaccination towards kennel cough (Bordetella Bronchiseptica).

Moreover, all canine and cats in Spain ought to have both a microchip or a well being card containing up-to-date details about their vaccinations.

Pet outlets in Spain

Though you possibly can not purchase most animals in pet outlets in Spain, there are nonetheless an array of shops that promote provides for pets, equivalent to meals, gear, and toys. These embrace each excessive avenue shops and on-line retailers. Huge names in Spain embrace:

You may seek for shops on Europages or listing companies, such because the Spanish Yellow Pages (Paginas Amarillas).

Pet companies in Spain

You’ll find varied companies offering supplementary companies for pets in Spain. These embrace:

  • Grooming, care, and pampering companies
  • Pet sitting or canine strolling companies
  • Boarding companies equivalent to kennels or catteries if you wish to go on vacation
  • Pet portraits or images

You may examine for native companies and examine costs on the PetBacker web site.

Misplaced pets in Spain

Dropping a pet

In case your pet goes lacking in Spain, there are just a few steps that you may take to seek out them:

  • Attempt any native animal shelters, rescue facilities, or vets to see if it has been turned in or reported
  • Contact nationwide misplaced pet companies equivalent to Huellitas Perdidas or PetAlert
  • Report the incident to the native police in case somebody has handed the pet into the native station or alerted the native pressure
  • Inform native neighborhood and expat social media boards
  • Put up lacking posters, together with a contact quantity and a latest photograph of your pet

It could be helpful to know the Spanish phrase for:

  • Misplaced canine is perro perdido
  • Misplaced pet is mascota perdida

Vet scanning the microchip of a lost dog

There are precautionary measures that you may take to attempt to stop shedding your pet in Spain. These are:

  • Guaranteeing that your pet is microchipped. This may make it simpler to find if it goes lacking.
  • Putting a tag on the animal’s collar which incorporates its title, tackle, and phone quantity.

Discovering a pet

Should you discover a misplaced or stray pet, contact native animal shelters, animal welfare organizations, or misplaced pet companies. It’s best to take it to an area vet if the animal seems sick or injured. Don’t attempt to hold it as you could be fined, or worse, if authorities uncover the pet and you can’t show that you simply looked for the proprietor.

Prices of maintaining pets in Spain

Spain is a well-liked vacation spot because it presents good high quality residing and nice climate. It is usually extra reasonably priced than many nations in Northern Europe or america (US). Nevertheless, you possibly can nonetheless anticipate to pay a good proportion of your earnings on common payments and residing prices. Moreover, issues are dearer in larger cities equivalent to Madrid and Barcelona.

This additionally applies to pet prices, with bills evaluating favorably with nations equivalent to the UK (UK) and France however being pricier in metropolitan areas. No matter pet you may have in Spain, you’ll have to finances for:

  • Tools (bedding, cages, toys, leads)
  • Meals
  • Vet payments
  • Insurance coverage (non-compulsory)
  • Supplementary care prices

As well as, you may have the preliminary one-off prices equivalent to transportation, import, and registration, plus getting a passport in case you intend to journey together with your pet.

Examples of value

As a tough information, you possibly can anticipate to pay common prices of:

  • €800 to €1,200 for a canine
  • €500 to €700 for a cat
  • €300 to €500 for different pets

Promoting a pet in Spain

If in case you have a pet in Spain and discover that you may not take care of it, you possibly can take it to an area animal rescue middle or shelter.

You may promote pets in Spain, nevertheless, outlets at the moment are banned from promoting most animals, so you’ll have to go personal. You are able to do this by means of private ads, for instance, on social media websites, native publications, or web sites equivalent to Milanuncios.

Ideas when promoting a pet in Spain embrace:

  • Offering the vendor with all the required info concerning your pet’s registration, vaccinations, and medical standing
  • Assembly potential patrons prematurely to make sure they will present a secure and wholesome house
  • Drawing up a purchase order contract containing key info and the rights and duties of the client and vendor to guard each events

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