Pets in Germany


When moving to Germany from outside the EU, each person is allowed to bring in a maximum of five animals as part of their „personal or household items“. The animals must be your pet and not brought to Germany in order to be sold. Animals brought into Germany do not have to be quarantined if they have the proper vaccinations and if they come from a country on an EU-approved list.

If you are considering going into furnished temporary living upon moving to Germany, you must check with your landlord regarding pets as this can be an issue, or perhaps consider bringing your pet at a later date when you have organized a more permanent arrangement.

The authority responsible for the import of pets is the Zollamt, for more information please click here.

Further information on registering a dog here.

When acquiring a new Pet

If you are looking to add a new ‚four-legged‘ family member to your household, then make sure you keep these points in mind:

  1.  Although there are no official pet-bans, if you are renting, it is very important to let your landlord know about any pets.
  2. If you own a dog,  you must register your dog with the tax office right after moving to Berlin, since there is a dog tax that every owner has to pay in Berlin. Currently, this tax is around 120 euros per year for the first dog and 180 euros for each additional dog. 
  3. In case your pet is involved in an accident or damages property, every owner is required to take out liability insurance.


According to Berlin laws, Dogs must be kept on a leash. However, there are various parks and areas in Berlin, where dogs are allowed to move freely. On the outskirts of the city, you will also find some large wooded areas where your dog is allowed without a leash. In the city center, there are also multiple „Auslaufgebiete“. Check out the following: 

  1. Schlachtensee/Krumme Lanke Auslaufgebiet
  2. Grunewald (Hüttenweg)
  3. Hundeauslaufgebiet Wannsee-Düppel
  4. Hundeauslaufgebiet Jungfernheide
  5. Hundewiese Tempelhofer Feld 
  6. Hundeauslauf im Park am Gleisdreieck 
  7. Hundeauslaufgebiet Stadtpark Spandau 

Adoption Process:

There are a couple of steps to adopt your pet in Berlin. After confirming your decision, you will be asked to answer multiple questions about your living conditions and to bring with you your ID to undergo the provisional registration. Furthermore,  you will have to pay an adoption fee, which covers the care costs, vaccinations, microchips, and castration. 

Although there are various provisions when it comes to bringing, buying, or adopting your pet, Berlin is a great place for pet owners and their four-legged friends!



Juli Buchanan

Hi there! I'm Juli, I have german roots but I grew up in New Zealand and have been living in Germany since 2004. I love sharing my passion for Berlin and all it has to offer with new 'Berliners' and through my work as a freelance Relocation Consultant with IRC I have the opportunity to do so.

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