By Wendy Williams

IT will soon be far easier for animal lovers to take their pets back to the UK.

From January 1 rules on animal passports are to be relaxed in the UK and brought in line with the rest of Europe.

Currently, Brits need a passport and anti rabies jab for their animal, and it needs to be blood-tested six months before the date of re-entering the UK.

In some cases, pets end up quarantined because they do not have required paperwork.

But new rules announced by the British Foreign Office will change all this.

From January pets travelling within the EU as well as the United States and Australia will no longer need a blood test and will only have to wait 21 days from the date of the rabies vaccination before travelling.

Environment secretary Caroline Spelman said: “The UK’s quarantine system was designed to combat the threat of rabies in the 19th century and has now been left far behind by scientific advances.

“It’s time we changed these outdated rules which have caused hardship to generations of pets and pet owners.

“The EU’s pet movement scheme has been working very well for nearly a decade, and it makes sense for us to have similar rules.”

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