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Animal transports

Animal transports

Matkahuolto does not carry live animals. However, cats and dogs can travel on bus when accompanied by a fare-paying passenger.

Exceptions to the above are:

  • live insects, larvae and worms used as fishing baits; and

  • live crayfish during the crayfish season.

Live animals are always sent as Express Parcels. The consignor must package the animals properly to provide safe conditions for the duration of the trip. The package must be closed so as to ensure that the animals cannot escape during transportation. Indicate the contents clearly by writing on the package and next to the appropriate item on the address card: live animals + name of the species.

Shipping instructions for animal specimen, small animal carcasses and animal skins.

These instructions are for shipments of animal specimen and small animal carcasses addressed to the Finnish Food Agency, Natural Resources Institute Finland and the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine or other recipients who receive, for example, animal skins.

Animal specimen (e.g. organs, skins, stool and blood samples) may be sent by Matkahuolto if the shipment contains:

  • Exempt animal specimen


These shipments should always be sent as Express Parcels through Matkahuolto’s own service outlets or our agents. The recipient (Finnish Food Agency, Natural Resources Institute Finland or the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine) pays the cost of delivery. The sender may also pay for the delivery.

The parcel must be attached with a shipment advice. You can download a submission form from the Finnish Food Agency website ( or insert a free-form advice. The advice should contain the name, address and telephone number of the sender and the following details about the content:

  • species

  • municipality or locality of capture and geographic coordinates, if possible

  • date of capture

  • method of euthanisation/found dead

  • possible symptoms of disease

The samples must be sent during the early part of the week (Monday to Thursday), so that they can be delivered before the weekend.


The packaging and labelling of the parcels must comply with the regulations for the relevant Dangerous Goods classification and Category B shipments. The sender is responsible for the correct classification of the specimen. If necessary, contact the recipient for advice on specimen classification.

A carcass or animal specimen placed in a plastic bag, bucket/tub or cardboard box cannot be accepted for transport. If the shipment does not comply with the packaging instructions, the shipment will be declined.

Chill the specimen to refrigeration temperature (we recommend +1°– +5°) before packaging, but there is no need to freeze the specimen unless it will be stored for a long period of time. Frozen specimens are accepted for testing.

The Finnish Food Agency instructions are available at:

Exempt animal specimen

Wrap the specimen in plenty of paper (e.g. newspaper) that can absorb any liquid. Place the wrapped specimen inside a plastic bag (make sure it has no breakages) and then inside a sturdy cardboard box. Add paper inside the box as padding. Seal the box carefully with tape. You may place ice packs inside the box to preserve the specimen.

Label the box: “Exempt animal specimen”


  • the applicable packaging regulation is P 650 and it requires three parts:

    • primary vessel

    • secondary packaging

    • outer packaging.


The box must also be labelled with the UN3373 sticker:

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