Restrictions on Animals in Belgium

Information about restricted breeds, and rules regarding pets in public places in Belgium...

Certain animals covered by the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) may be refused entry into Belgium. Consult the UK CITES site for more details.

Prairie dogs are not permitted entry from the USA, and squirrels and some types of rodent originating from sub-Saharan Africa are also forbidden.

Potentially dangerous dogs

There is currently little legislation concerning potentially dangerous dogs in Belgium, but, following a number of attacks, there are moves to outlaw some fighting breeds and guard dogs such as the American Staffordshire Terrier, the Mastiff and Tosa, but this has not yet passed into law.

There are a number of breeds that may not be allowed into the country; Pit Bulls are typically forbidden entry, for example. Owners of certain breeds of dog will have to provide evidence that the dog does not present a danger to the public. Dogs that have previously had any kind of warning or action taken against them or their owner for dangerous or aggressive behaviour will normally be refused entry.

Owners of dogs which could be classed as dangerous are expected to keep them on a lead at all times in public, muzzled if necessary. In the event of an incident, legal action may be taken against the owner of a dog. All dogs have to be registered so owners are traceable.

For up-to-date-information consult the Belgian Veterinary Service in Brussels.

  • SPF Santé Publique, Sécurité de la Chaîne Alimentaire et de l'Environnement, DG Animaux Végétaux et Alimentation
    : Place Victor Horta 40 b.10, 1060 Brussels
    Tel: 02 524 73 20
    Fax: 02 524 73 29

Pets in Public Places

Dogs are welcome in most public places but there are restrictions. For more details consult:

Signs are usually displayed to indicate whether pets are welcomed in hotels and restaurants. Some supermarket chains in Belgium allow dogs and display signs to this effect.

Pets on public transport

Guide Dogs travel free on public transport. Other dogs are allowed on public transport subject to certain conditions.

  • Trains:
    • Small pets may travel free of charge if they are kept in a cage, box or basket that measures no more than 55cm long, 30cm wide and 30cm high
    • Dogs on leads must pay a second class 50% ticket
    • Pets are not allowed to take passengers' seats
    • Animals must not cause inconvenience to other passengers
    • Further information from the SNCB/NMBS
  • Trams and Buses: Small dogs may be carried free of charge if they can sit on the owner's knee and are kept on a lead. They must not cause a nuisance to other passengers. Larger dogs will incur a charge and must be on a lead and muzzled if appropriate. Drivers have the right to refuse to carry a dog if they feel it is likely to pose a threat to other passengers

Dog fouling

There is no fine or requirement to clean up after a dog in public, however, people are becoming increasingly sensitive about it.