How To Support Pets & Their Families In Ukraine

Wondering how you can support Ukrainian refugees and their pets? Here's a list of organizations providing aid and information about where families can get help.

Courtney Elliott

Updated December 15, 2022 • Published March 03, 2022

Share to

How To Support Pets & Their Families In Ukraine

The crisis in Ukraine has become increasingly dire. It might feel like it’s hard to help, but there are little things you can do that will make a difference.

As Ukrainian refugees seek safety and shelter, they’re having to make difficult decisions about their pets. Countries have relaxed entry paperwork for many animals, allowing families to bring their pets with them. However, there are still pets in Ukrainian shelters in great need of food, water, and financial assistance. 

Whether you donate to a shelter, share helpful information, or support an animal welfare organization, every little bit helps.

Here’s how to support Ukrainian refugees and their pets:

IFAW is an organization that is rushing aid to refugee families and their pets. They have verified that the below countries are accepting animals without documentation for those fleeing from Ukraine. Currently, these include:

  • Poland – The entire animal health dossier is not mandatory at the moment. Once animals have crossed the border, they will be vaccinated. Source

    • A Polish animal shelter is offering help to anyone with their pets. Contact volunteer Natalia (518 667 614) for assistance and temporary housing

  • Hungary – Unvaccinated and undocumented pets can enter Hungary. Authorities will administer microchipping and rabies vaccinations to cats, dogs, and ferrets traveling with refugees. Source

  • Italy – Dogs and cats entering European countries with their families are welcome without proper documentation. Once families and their pets have crossed the border, the rest will be sorted. Source

  • Romania – All Ukrainian pets traveling with their refugee families can enter Romania without vaccines, passports, or a microchip. The pet parent will fill out documentation once they cross the border. Source

    • If your family is trying to get out via the Romanian border, there is a vet team at Solca/Siret that will help with your pets so you don't have to leave them behind. Contact details are on Saved by the Vet’s Facebook page

    • The animal protection association Casa lui Patrocle also supports and offers help for families with pets who enter Romania from the Ukraine via the Sireten. The shelter is located in Suceava, about 40 km away from the Ukrainian border. Visit Casa lui Patrocle’s Facebook page for more information.

  • Finland – Pets fleeing Ukraine with their families or under force majeure circumstances from Russia are allowed to enter the country without a permit or prior application. Pet parents will be asked to present the pet and any documentation to Finnish Customs and further instructions will be provided. Source

  • Latvia – Ukrainian citizens who have pets that are not microchipped or vaccinated will be allowed to enter with their animals. Formal procedures and documentation can occur once they’ve crossed the border. Source

  • Estonia – Pets without microchip, documentation, or rabies vaccine are permitted to enter. Pet parents can email the arrival notification form (linked below) to [email protected] and [email protected] and [email protected]. Source

  • Slovakia – The country is accepting animals without vaccination certification. Pet parents can fill in the document via the following link: Source

  • Lithuania – Ukrainian citizens whose animals are not microchipped or vaccinated against rabies will be marked and vaccinated on the spot, and isolation requirements may be required. Source

  • Czech Republic – Pets entering without a valid rabies vaccine/rabies titre test are required to undergo a 10-day quarantine with constant supervision by the pet parent. Additionally, within three days of entering the country, the pet needs to be examined by a veterinarian (and microchipped if necessary). Between 5–10 days of entry, the pet must be vaccinated against rabies if they’re not up to date. Source

The organization is located in Odessa, Ukraine, which has been the target of multiple bombs. As many citizens abandon their animals and flee, VetCrew will stay behind and help those pets left behind. Subscribe to their Patreon here.

  • @sirius.shelter - This is the largest shelter for stray animals in Ukraine, established in 2000. Visit their instagram bio to donate.

  • @happy_paw - This shelter is in need of water, so if you’re nearby and able, please bring water. You can also donate on their website and subscribe to their Patreon.

  • @helping_animals_in_sumy - Due to fighting and shelling, operations remain limited. Donate on their website.

  •  @UAnimals.official - This organization is helping more than 50 shelters in Ukraine with supplies and animal transfers. Become a subscriber to their Patreon.

  • @shelter_friend_ukraine is accepting all animals from the area and have helped transport animals over the border. Donate to their GoFundMe.

  • @lucky.strand - This Ukrainian shelter is in need of food supply and water. Visit their website to learn more about how you can help.

The Pawp team will continue to add additional ways to support Ukrainian refugees and their pets.

Thank you to Gal’s Best Friend and DogsOfInstagram for helping us pull together this list.

Talk to a vet now — it's free!

Text, call, or video chat with a vet within minutes.

Talk To A Vet Now