The news article is already a couple of years old but a reminder that it is super dangerous to think ignoring the local rules is a good option to travel.
In this case, a woman from Switzerland thought she could ignore the law and smuggle her cat to Iceland in an RV. The end of the story is that the cat was put down by the police and the woman received a hefty fine.
Not enough that the cat had to die because of the ignorance of the traveler. The costs for the whole campaign, putting it to sleep, thorough cleaning of the caravan, the veterinary costs, and the disposal of the poor cat’s carcass are all at the pet owner’s expense.
Why are the authorities so strict in such a case?
Icelandic law has stringent rules governing the import of live animals. It is strictly forbidden to import most farm animals, and pets must be quarantined before they are allowed into the country. Pet owners who wish to bring their pets must apply for a permit and complete extensive paperwork. The law states that imported animals in violation of this law must be put down immediately and their carcasses destroyed.
The reason for the law is that many animal diseases, including rabies, have never been detected in Iceland. Icelandic authorities are therefore highly vigilant regarding the smuggling of live animals. In cases when animals are discovered onboard airplanes, they are usually sent back on the next flight, but when animals have already managed to evade customs officials and made it into the country, they are put down without exception.
For the sake of the animals, please do not try to cheat when traveling with your furry friend.