As you’re probably aware we have a Staffordshire Bull Terrier called Pepper. While planning our travels to Europe we found out that in some countries she is classed as a dangerous dog and therefore not allowed to enter. To ensure that we knew the rules and which countries we could visit with her we started to do some research. It was not easy to find out where she was and wasn’t allowed to go, with so many sites contradicting each other. So we have put this page together to help you understand the rules.

Pepper camping with us

What is the Dangerous Dogs Act?

The Dangerous Dogs Act sets forth laws intended to keep the public safe from dog attacks, but it remains one of the UK’s most controversial pieces of legislation. In the UK The Dangerous Dogs Act was introduced in 1991 in response to a spate of dog attacks. The legislation made it a criminal offence to have a dog ‘dangerously out of control’ in a public place or somewhere where the dog is not permitted to be. The law was updated in 2014 to extend the law to also cover dogs on private property. It also banned ‘Specially Control Dogs’ – these are also known as banned breeds. A dog that is dangerously out of control is one that has injured another person or has given another person reasonable apprehension that it may do so.There are very similar rules in all European countries and they all differ slightly and class different dogs as dangerous.

What does ‘dangerously out of control’ mean?

This may be something as simple as your dog chasing, barking or jumping up at another person or child if it leads to a complaint.

Countries and their rules

You can enter or return to Austria with your pet dog if it:

  • has been microchipped
  • has a pet passport or third-country official veterinary certificate
  • has been vaccinated against rabies – it will also need a blood test if you’re travelling from an ‘unlisted country’. You must wait 21 days after the vaccination (or the last of the primary course of vaccinations) before bringing your pet to Austria.

Dangerous Dogs

Austria does not publish a list of banned breeds.

For more information please click here.

You can enter or return to Belgium with your pet dog if it:

  • has been microchipped
  • has a pet passport or third-country official veterinary certificate
  • has been vaccinated against rabies – it will also need a blood test if you’re travelling from an ‘unlisted country’. You must wait 21 days after the vaccination (or the last of the primary course of vaccinations) before bringing your pet to Belgium.

For more information click here.

Dangerous Dogs

There is no national legislation regarding dangerous dogs. However, each individual local authority can impose its own rules, which range from compulsory muzzling to banning certain breeds.

For more information please click here or here.

You can enter or return to Croatia with your pet dog if it:

  • has been microchipped
  • has a pet passport or third-country official veterinary certificate
  • has been vaccinated against rabies – it will also need a blood test if you’re travelling from an ‘unlisted country’. You must wait 21 days after the vaccination (or the last of the primary course of vaccinations) before bringing your pet to Croatia.

Dangerous Dogs

All bull terrier-type dogs and their crosses (Staffordshire Bull Terrier, American Staffordshire Terrier, Bull Terrier and Miniature Bull Terrier) which do not possess a pedigree issued by the Kennel Club of one of the member countries of the International Canine Organizations (FCI) will not be permitted entry to Croatia. The transit, entry and temporary stay is forbidden for all the bull-type terriers not registered with the FCI, and also for all their hybrids (crossbred) types.

Note that the FCI (International register of Kennel Clubs) has an agreement with the UK Kennel Club even though the UK is not an official member: FCI: the largest canine organisation of the world

For more information click here.

You can enter or return to Denmark with your pet dog if it:

  • has been microchipped
  • has a pet passport or third-country official veterinary certificate
  • has been vaccinated against rabies – it will also need a blood test if you’re travelling from an ‘unlisted country’. You must wait 21 days after the vaccination (or the last of the primary course of vaccinations) before bringing your pet to Denmark.

Your dog must be registered in the Danish Dog Register no later than 4 weeks upon arrival in Denmark. This means that even if your stay in Denmark is only temporary, your dog must be registered in the Danish Dog Register if the stay exceeds 4 weeks. Go to The Danish Dog Register or contact an authorised veterinarian.

For more information please click here.

Dangerous Dogs

Sections 1 a-b of the Danish Act on Dogs prohibit the keeping and breeding of 13 specified dog breeds, including crossbreeds involving the 13 specified dog breeds.
 
The provisions prohibit private individuals, including tourists, from bringing the prohibited dogs into Denmark during e.g. a holiday.
 
Import of the specified dogs, including crossbreeds, into Denmark for commercial purposes is also prohibited.
 
The following 13 dog breeds and cross-breeds hereof are prohibited in Denmark:
  • Pitt Bull Terrier
  • Tosa Inu
  • American Staffordshire Terrier
  • Fila Brasileiro
  • Dogo Argentino
  • American Bulldog
  • Boerboel
  • Kangal
  • Central Asian Shepherd Dog (ovcharka)
  • Caucasian Shepherd Dog (ovcharka)
  • South Russian Shepherd Dog (ovcharka)
  • Tornjak
  • Sarplaninac
If doubt arises as to whether a dog belongs to one of the prohibited dog breeds or cross-breeds hereof, the police may request that the possessor proves the dog’s breed or type.
 
Possessors of a dog, which in appearance have some features in common with one or more of the prohibited breeds, are recommended to ensure that they possess documentation of their dog’s breed. It should be noted that the prohibition of certain dog breeds does not include dogs that are in transit through Denmark.

Nevertheless, if you did own your dog prior to March 17, 2010, the dog will be covered by the transitional arrangements. Therefore you are allowed to bring such a dog to Denmark.

During your stay in Denmark, you must comply with the requirements of the Danish Dog Act. For more information, visit the page Danish legislation on dogs.

Transport in transit of a prohibited dog breed is permitted, provided that the dog does not leave the means of transport – apart from quite brief stays outside the means of transport when it is necessary to let the dog out for exercise etc. – and provided that the transport takes place without unnecessary stops in Denmark. 

For more information please click here or here.

You can enter or return to the UK with your pet dog if it:

In the UK, it’s against the law to own certain types of dog. These are the:

  • Pit Bull Terrier
  • Japanese Tosa
  • Dogo Argentino
  • Fila Brasileiro

For further information on England please click here.

You can enter or return to Finland with your pet dog if it:

  • has been microchipped
  • has a pet passport or third-country official veterinary certificate
  • has been vaccinated against rabies – it will also need a blood test if you’re travelling from an ‘unlisted country’. You must wait 21 days after the vaccination (or the last of the primary course of vaccinations) before bringing your pet to Finland.
  • Before your dog can enter Finland, it must be treated against certain tapeworms one to five days prior to entering the country unless your pet is entering directly from the United Kingdom, Ireland, Malta or Norway.

Dangerous Dogs

Finland does not restrict the import of any dog breeds.

For more information please click here.

You can enter or return to France with your pet dog if it:

  • has been microchipped
  • has a pet passport or third-country official veterinary certificate
  • has been vaccinated against rabies – it will also need a blood test if you’re travelling from an ‘unlisted country’. You must wait 21 days after the vaccination (or the last of the primary course of vaccinations) before bringing your pet to France.

For further information click here.

Dangerous Dogs

Dangerous dogs are classified in 2 categories. The acquisition of dogs of 1st category is prohibited. Some people are prohibited from owning a 2nd grade dog. Before any future acquisition, the future owner of the dog must undergo training. Once acquired, the dog must undergo a behavioural evaluation. Then the owner must apply for a detention permit.

Outside, your dog must have a leash and a muzzle.

Attack dogs (1st category)

These are dogs that are not registered with a pedigree book recognized by the ministry in charge of agriculture (the book of French origins or LOF). Their morphological characteristics can be likened to the following breeds:

  • Staffordshire terrier or American Staffordshire terrier (so-called pitbulls dogs )
  • Mastiff (dogs called boerbulls )
  • or Tosa

The acquisition, sale or dogs donated 1st category is prohibited.

Dogs on duty and defense (2nd category)

These are the breeds:

  • Staffordshire terrier or American Staffordshire terrier;
  • Rottweiler;
  • Tosa;
  • and assimilated by their morphological characteristics to Rottweiler breed dogs, without being registered in a studbook recognized by the Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries.

The Staffordshire bull terrier dog is not a dangerous dog.

For further information on France please click here.

You can enter or return to Germany with your pet dog if it:

  • has been microchipped
  • has a pet passport or third-country official veterinary certificate
  • has been vaccinated against rabies – it will also need a blood test if you’re travelling from an ‘unlisted country’. You must wait 21 days after the vaccination (or the last of the primary course of vaccinations) before bringing your pet to Germany.

For further information click here.

Dangerous Dogs

The Dog Transfer and Import Restrictions Act prohibits the import or transfer into Germany of certain breeds of dog and crossbreeding of these dogs with one another, or with other breeds.

It refers to these breeds of dog:

  • Pit Bull Terrier
  • American Staffordshire Terrier
  • Staffordshire Bull Terrier
  • Bull Terrier

Neither may dogs of other breeds or crosses of these breeds be imported or transferred from abroad if the regulations of the federal Land in which a dog is to be permanently kept presume it to be dangerous.

Provisions imposed by individual states

Exceptions from the import ban

Working dogs (for example: security or watch dogs, dogs for handicapped people, and dogs of the rescue and civil protection services) may be imported.

There are also exceptions from the transfer and import ban if:

  • Dangerous dogs accompanying individuals who are not staying in the Federal Republic of Germany for longer than four weeks (particularly intended for tourists).

In these cases, it is absolutely essential that the owner possesses the documents necessary to verify the animals (for example: a pedigree certificate, a vaccination certificate, a character test certificate, and other certificates from the competent office of public order).

For further information on Germany please click here.

You can enter or return to Greece with your pet dog if it:

  • has been microchipped
  • has a pet passport or third-country official veterinary certificate
  • has been vaccinated against rabies – it will also need a blood test if you’re travelling from an ‘unlisted country’. You must wait 21 days after the vaccination (or the last of the primary course of vaccinations) before bringing your pet to Greece.

Dangerous Dogs

Greece does not publish a list of banned dog breeds.

For more information please click here.

You can enter or return to Hungary with your pet dog if it:

  • has been microchipped
  • has a pet passport or third-country official veterinary certificate
  • has been vaccinated against rabies – it will also need a blood test if you’re travelling from an ‘unlisted country’. You must wait 21 days after the vaccination (or the last of the primary course of vaccinations) before bringing your pet to Hungary.

Dangerous Dogs

Hungary does not ban any breed of dog and will only deem them dangerous based on their behaviour once imported to the country.

For more information please click here.

You can enter or return to Ireland with your pet dog if it:

  • has been microchipped
  • has a pet passport or third-country official veterinary certificate
  • has been vaccinated against rabies – it will also need a blood test if you’re travelling from an ‘unlisted country’. You must wait 21 days after the vaccination (or the last of the primary course of vaccinations) before bringing your pet to Ireland.
  • Before your dog can enter Ireland, it must be treated against certain tapeworms one to five days prior to entering the country unless your pet is entering directly from the UK, Finland, Malta or Norway.

For more information please click here.

Dangerous Dogs

The following breeds of dogs or their crosses are not banned but are controlled while in Ireland, namely the:

  • American Pit Bull Terrier
  • English Bull Terrier
  • Staffordshire Bull Terrier
  • Bull Mastiff
  • Doberman Pinscher
  • German Shepherd (Alsatian)
  • Rhodesian Ridgeback
  • Rottweiler
  • Japanese Akita
  • Japanese Tosa
  • and to every dog of the type commonly known as a Ban Dog (or Bandog).

The owner is responsible for their pet’s actions, and are liable for injuries or attacks. In public places, they must be on a strong, short lead. The person holding your pet must be over 16 years old, and your dog must be muzzled. The court, if they deem the dog as dangerous, has the power to have your dog destroyed.

For further information please click here.

You can enter or return to Italy with your pet dog if it:

  • has been microchipped
  • has a pet passport or third-country official veterinary certificate
  • has been vaccinated against rabies – it will also need a blood test if you’re travelling from an ‘unlisted country’. You must wait 21 days after the vaccination (or the last of the primary course of vaccinations) before bringing your pet to Italy.

Dangerous Dogs

Nothing official but as far as we can tell all breeds are allowed since 2009 except a few in Venice (Rottweiler, Doberman Pinscher). You are however encouraged to use a leash and muzzle.

For further information click here or here.

You can enter or return to the Netherlands with your pet dog if it:

  • has been microchipped
  • has a pet passport or third-country official veterinary certificate
  • has been vaccinated against rabies – it will also need a blood test if you’re travelling from an ‘unlisted country’. You must wait 21 days after the vaccination (or the last of the primary course of vaccinations) before bringing your pet to the Netherlands.

For more information click here.

You can enter or return to Norway with your pet dog if it:

  • has been microchipped
  • has a pet passport or third-country official veterinary certificate
  • has been vaccinated against rabies – it will also need a blood test if you’re travelling from an ‘unlisted country’. You must wait 21 days after the vaccination (or the last of the primary course of vaccinations) before bringing your pet to Norway.
  • Before your dog can enter Norway, it must be treated against certain tapeworms by a licensed veterinarian between one and five days prior to entering the country unless your pet is entering directly from Finland, Ireland, Malta or the United Kingdom.

For more information please click here.

Dangerous Dogs

It is against the law to own certain breeds of dogs which are considered dangerous in Norway. This ban also applies to crossbreeds where there are one or more of these breeds in any proportion.

There are currently six banned dog breeds. These are:

  • The Pit Bull Terrier
  • The American Staffordshire Terrier
  • The Fila Brasilerio
  • The Toso Inu
  • The Dogo Argentino
  • The Czechoslovakian Wolfdog

If there is a suspicion that an animal is of a dangerous breed of dog, the police and customs authorities can require the dog owner to document its breed or type in accordance with the law. If there is doubt about the breed, the police can have the dog killed or require that the dog is sent out of the country.

For more information please click here.

You can enter or return to Poland with your pet dog if it:

  • has been microchipped
  • has a pet passport or third-country official veterinary certificate
  • has been vaccinated against rabies – it will also need a blood test if you’re travelling from an ‘unlisted country’. You must wait 21 days after the vaccination (or the last of the primary course of vaccinations) before bringing your pet to Poland.

Dangerous Dogs

Poland does not permit the import of the following dog breeds:

  • American Pit Bull Terrier
  • Ca de Bou (Perro de presa Mallorquin)
  • American Bulldog
  • Dogo Argentino (Argentine Mastiff)
  • Perro de Presa Canario
  • Dogo Canario
  • Tosa Inu
  • Rottweiler
  • Akbash Dog
  • The Anatolian Shepherd Dog
  • Moscow Guard Dog
  • The Caucasian Shepherd Dog

For more information please click here.

You can enter or return to Portugal with your pet dog if it:

  • has been microchipped
  • has a pet passport or third-country official veterinary certificate
  • has been vaccinated against rabies – it will also need a blood test if you’re travelling from an ‘unlisted country’. You must wait 21 days after the vaccination (or the last of the primary course of vaccinations) before bringing your pet to Portugal.

For more information please click here.

Dangerous Dogs

Portugal does permit the import of the following dog breeds for non-commercial purposes from countries outside the EU; however, upon entering Portugal, pet owners must sign a Statement of Responsibility for dogs staying for less than 4 months and a Notification document for dogs intending to reside in Portugal:

  • Brazilian Fila
  • American Staffordshire Terrier
  • Staffordshire Bull Terrier
  • Dogo Argentino
  • Japenese Tosa Inu
  • Pit Bull Terrier

These breeds should be neutered or spayed before importing to Portugal.

I cannot, however, see any restrictions for owners that already live inside the EU but you may need to complete and sign a Statement of Responsibility for dogs staying for less than 4 months.

For further information please click here.

You can enter or return to Slovenia with your pet dog if it:

  • has been microchipped
  • has a pet passport or third-country official veterinary certificate
  • has been vaccinated against rabies – it will also need a blood test if you’re travelling from an ‘unlisted country’. You must wait 21 days after the vaccination (or the last of the primary course of vaccinations) before bringing your pet to Slovenia.

Dangerous Dogs

Slovenia does not publish a list of banned breeds.

For more information please click here.

You can enter or return to Spain with your pet dog if it:

  • has been microchipped
  • has a pet passport or third-country official veterinary certificate
  • has been vaccinated against rabies – it will also need a blood test if you’re travelling from an ‘unlisted country’. You must wait 21 days after the vaccination (or the last of the primary course of vaccinations) before bringing your pet to Spain.

For more information please click here.

Dangerous Dogs

In Spain, there are strict requirements for keeping potentially dangerous dogs (unless it is a guide dog or a dog to accompany disabled people). These requirements are laid down in the national Spanish law. If you are travelling with a potentially dangerous dog, you need to read the below.

Spanish law classifies the following dogs as potentially dangerous, they are not banned from entering Spain, but they must be registered within 3 months of entry and must wear a muzzle to pass security.

The dogs belonging to one of the following breeds and their crossings:

  • Pit Bull Terrier
  • Staffordshire Bull Terrier
  • American Staffordshire Terrier
  • Rottweiler
  • Dogo Argentino
  • Fila Brasiliero
  • Tosa Inu
  • Akita Inu

Dogs with all or most of the following characteristics:

  • Strong muscular, imposing appearance, robust, athletic construction, agile, powerful, high resistance.
  • Pronounced character and of great courage.
  • Short hair.
  • Circumference thorax between 60 and 80 cm, height of the cross between 50 and 70 cm and with a weight of more than 20 kg.
  • Large head, robust, with a large and wide skull and muscular, bulbous cheeks. Large and powerful jaws, the robust mouth is wide and deep. Wide and short muscled neck.
  • Filled breast, broad, large and deep, curved ribs, short and muscled rib cage.
  • Parallel forelegs, straight and powerful, hind legs very muscular, with relatively long legs, slightly angled.

For more information including the requirements that must be met to be allowed to keep such a dog in Spain, please click here

You can enter or return to Sweden with your pet dog if it:

  • has been microchipped
  • has a pet passport or third-country official veterinary certificate
  • has been vaccinated against rabies – it will also need a blood test if you’re travelling from an ‘unlisted country’. You must wait 21 days after the vaccination (or the last of the primary course of vaccinations) before bringing your pet to Sweden.

Dangerous Dogs

The following breeds are not permitted to enter Sweden:

  • Czechoslovakian Wolfdog
  • Saarloos Wolfdog

For more information please click here.

You can enter or return to Switzerland with your pet dog if it:

  • has been microchipped
  • has a pet passport or third-country official veterinary certificate
  • has been vaccinated against rabies – it will also need a blood test if you’re travelling from an ‘unlisted country’. You must wait 21 days after the vaccination (or the last of the primary course of vaccinations) before bringing your pet to Switzerland.

For more information please click here.

Dangerous Dogs

Dogs with cropped ears or tails are also banned from entry to Switzerland. If you are intending to reside in the country, you will need to get advance permission from the Federal Food Safety and Veterinary Office.

Regulations for banned breeds in Switzerland are set at the canton (province) level. Depending on the canton your dog is travelling to, the breed restrictions will apply.

Most of the Swiss cantons have regulations about dogs, particularly in relation to looking after dangerous or potentially dangerous dogs (such as bull terriers, Dobermans and Rottweilers). Most of the cantons have drawn up a list of dogs that are considered dangerous or potentially dangerous. 

Please click here for more details and a list of the cantons and their list of dangerous dogs.

The following breeds or their crosses will not be permitted entry in:

Geneva
  • American Staffordshire
  • Boerboel
  • Bullmastiff
  • Cane Corso
  • Dogo Argentino
  • Dogue de Bordeaux
  • Fila Braziliero
  • Mastiff, Matin
  • Matin de Naples
  • Pitt Bull
  • Presa Canario
  • Rottweiler
  • Thai Ridgeback
  • Tosa Inu.
Zurich

The following dogs are considered high-risk dogs:

  • American Staffordshire Terriers
  • Bull Terriers
  • Staffordshire Bull Terriers 

In summary

If you are travelling in Europe with a possible listed dangerous dog please ensure you have followed the below:

  • Research the rules within the country and region you are travelling to and register them if required
  • Ensure you have paperwork proving the breed of your dog and pedigree where possible
  • Ensure you have a closed muzzle with you
  • Ensure you have a short lead
  • Buy good quality liability insurance, ensuring it covers your entire stay
Please note that we are not lawyers! This is the best information that we could find at the time, and we will try to keep it up to date. Please follow the links and do your own research too.It is always worth you contacting the location you plan to visit to find out if any local laws or restrictions apply.