House Rules for Keeping Pets in Turkey


If you have a beloved furry friend, leaving him or her at home when preparing to relocate to a property in Turkey can be as unthinkable as leaving behind a limb.  However, there are several house rules for bringing animals into Turkey, and you need to be very sure of these indeed.

There is also some basic paperwork that needs to be done and which the Oceanwide Properties Turkey team can tell you about right here:


International Animal Health Certificate

Moving animals across countries can create a health risk, both for your pet and the animals in your new host country. Because of this, an International Animal Health Certificate is an absolute must when relocating. This certificate can be obtained in the UK from a qualified vet.

The certificate needs to be stamped by an approved Ministry department – ask your local vet to refer you to the applicable Animal Health or Agricultural Department. It is important to know that this health certificate is only valid if issued by a vet ten days or fewer than when you arrive in Turkey. If the certificate is older than that then you’ll be entering Turkey alone (or at least without a pet).

Rabies vaccination

Rabies is a real threat for animals (and humans). Along with the International Animal Health Certificate, you will need to vaccinate your pet against rabies, and have a certificate to prove you’ve done exactly that. The timeframe is a bit more lenient here: the vaccination certificate only needs to be dated within the year of your arrival in Turkey, and the certificate must be issued at least 30-days prior to your pet landing on Turkish soil.

Identification card

Your animal needs an identification card to enter and live in Turkey. Our advice is to keep your pet’s identification card with your own passport and other important paperwork, so that it’s at hand when you are asked for it – and you definitely will be.

Where to stay

If you bought property in Turkey, you will be free to choose whether your pets stay indoors or outdoors. However, if you are planning on renting a home or apartment, you will need to clarify the house rules with the owner or complex manager. Traditionally, Turks do not allow their animals free access to indoor spaces, as we do in the UK. Furthermore, there are restrictions on the number of animals you can bring along – even if the Turkish property is your own.  Ask your local consulate or immigration officer about this prior to making arrangements.

Generally, Turks are friendly and accommodating towards animals. Cats and dogs are more commonly found as  house pets these days. Finding a suitable pet shop and vet isn’t difficult either; certainly in the big cities anyway.

If you’re planning to invest in a property in Turkey and bring a pet along with you, it’s worth having a chat with an estate agent and you local consul about it. Find out more about life in Turkey and how to move there from the Oceanwide Properties Turkey team.

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