Horse Registration and Passports

DEFRA have stipulated that ALL horses in the UK over the age
of 6 months, must have a passport and must be microchipped

Horses at Shows

Horses at Shows may be checked for passports and you should always carry your passport with your horse when you travel even to a small local show. It is now illegal for anybody to buy or sell a horse unless it has a passport. If you are buying a horse always ask to see the passport before agreeing the purchase.

Loss of passport

If your passport is lost please send the registration form and outline sheet here and include a covering note to advise the passport has been lost and you require a duplicate passport with details of how the passport was lost. Please return this with the relevant fee and a duplicate passport will be able to be issued.

If passport is destroyed

Please return the remains of the passport alongside a registration form and outline sheet here and include a covering note to advise the passport has been destroyed including how and a duplicate passport is required. Please return the passport and form alongside the relevant fee.

If the horse is put to sleep

Please return the passport to us alongside confirmation that the horse has been put to sleep and the date. Please also advise if you wish the passport to be returned to you once it is cancelled and recorded on our database. There is no fee for this.

Passports issued before 2002

Any passport issued before 2002 needs to be checked to see if there is a sheet in it headed MEDICINAL TREATMENT. If it is not there, to have this sheet added free of charge, please send your horse’s passport to the AQHA UK office (together with a stamped addressed envelope for its return)

Equine Passports

Foal Registrations, Transfer of Ownership and Amendments

Horse Owners Legal Responsibility

Horse owners are responsible for keeping the information on the horse passport up to date including ownership details and food chain status.

Foals must be registered within six months of birth or no later that 31st December of the year of birth. Failure to do so will mean that ONLY a duplicate passport can be issued. This means that duplicate is stamped across the pages to prevent and trigger fraud checks.

Transfer of ownership must be notified to the passport issuing organisation (PIO) within 30 days of the sale. Failure to do so can incur a fine of up £2000.

Any changes for example; castration, change of name, replacement transponder, changes in coat or outline must be notified and updated in the passport.

If a micro chip has been inserted into a horse that had a passport prior to 2009 this must become part of the horses identity and must be updated in the horse passport and database.

Responsibility of AQHAUK – Passport Issuing Organisation

AQHAUK can only update passports for the UK or horses resident in the UK from EU member states although, AQAHUK must inform the other member state database via the Central Equine Database (CED).

There are many minimum operating standards that we as a PIO have to abide by in law. However, those that are of most interest to horse owner are,

We must complement information outlining the legal responsibilities of owners on our websites and this should included forms, and information on how to send in your passport for the necessary amendments of registration.

The passport must follow the set layout and security binding specified by Defra who enforce EU regulations on behalf of

We must provide passport application packs within 7 days of request and these have been available on the website for some time. We must acknowledge receipt of passport application within 15 working days unless we return your passport within that time. Passport must be issued within 20 working days unless the appropriate fee is not paid or there are circumstances that prevent us from doing so. For example we have requested better outlines or not all information is available.

We are responsible for making sure that silhouettes and transponders match and are completed correctly and legibly and signed by the vet. We can approach vets and breeders to check this information. Very soon all chips will have to be checked against a national chip checker database to prevent fraudulent insertion.
Transfers of ownership must be complete within 10 working days where all forms and information are complete and fees paid.

We must respond to emails and written correspondence within 15 working days and to telephone enquiries within 24 hours of receipt.

Please contact us by email on with details of your query and your contact number. We will email or call you to discuss the next steps.

Registrations and Passport applications by post and cheque

If you would like to use this method, please download the relevant AQHA UK forms for Passport Applications and horse transfers from our Download page here

Online Registrations and Passport applications

We’re delighted to be able to offer Online Registrations and Passport applications.  If you would like to take advantage of this service please click the relevant box below

Frequently asked questions

What’s the difference between AQHA registration and AQHA UK registration?

An AQHA registration is processed by AQHA in America and adds either pure bred or appendix registered horses to the main American Quarter Horse breed registry.
An AQHA UK registration is normally an application for a passport which also adds the horse to the UK only breed registry. This can be done for pure bred, appendix registered or part bred (50% or 50% plus) American Quarter Horses. For the horse to be registered as a pure bred or appendix registered with AQHA UK the AQHA registration needs to be completed with America first.

Can you change both registrations (AQHA and AQHA UK)?

No, the AQHA registration needs to be change/completed directly with AQHA in America. We do not have access to their records to complete these changes.

I’ve had my horse for around 5 years, but never transferred it into my name – I don’t have any transfer forms, and I can’t remember who I bought the horse from – what do I do.

To allow AQHA UK to transfer a passport we require a completed AQHA UK Transfer report signed by the seller. If the horse is a pure bred and also registered with AQHA the transfer needs to be completed with AQHA first and a copy of the transferred certificate included with the AQHA UK transfer. If you do not have the appropriate forms please contact AQHA UK to discuss this as we may be able to help you.

My horse is a purebred Quarter Horse, but I have never been given any AQHA USA Registration papers, what should I do?

The best thing to do in this instance is to contact the previous owner to ask for these. If you are unable to do this then please contact AQHA directly to discuss getting a duplicate AQHA Registration Certificate of Registration. You can find their contact details and downloadable forms on their website

I want to register a foal, it’s pure bred, but I don’t have any paperwork from the breeder, so it’s not registered with America – what can I do bearing in mind I need to have a passport by law by the time the foal is six months?

If you are having problems or delays getting AQHA registration sorted out then we can issue a id only passport without this information and then update the passport to a Section 1 (purebred) passport once this is resolved and a copy of the certificate is sent to us.

I’ve bred a foal, the mare was QH x Welsh, bred back to a full bred QH – does that mean I can have a pure bred passport and registration with AQHA and AQHA UK?

This horse could not be registered with AQHA or AQHA UK as a pure bred. This horse could be registered with AQHA UK as a section 2 (50% plus quarter horse).

I’ve got a thoroughbred mare and I bred her to a QH – is this an appendix, how do I get registered as such?

To enable you to register the foal as an appendix registered Quarter Horse the thoroughbred needs to be registered with Wetherby’s and registered with AQHA as an appendix breeding mare. Once this is completed the horse can also be registered with AQHA UK and issue an appendix registered passport.

My horse is in mainland Europe and has an AQHA UK passport, but I now no longer live there and want to gift the horse to a friend, how do I change the AQHA registration and AQHA UK registration if I don’t have the paperwork and won’t be able to get it for a few months?

To complete the transfer with AQHA and AQHA UK you will need to complete transfer forms. These can be downloaded from AQHA UK website for the passport transfer and for the AQHA Certificate of Registration transfer. You can download these, complete them and then forward them to Europe so these completed forms can be sent off with the appropriate paperwork to be transferred.

I have a QH and I have the certificate of registration (American) but don’t have anything else, you say I need a signed American transfer form, how do I get that?

The transfer of the AQHA Certificate of Registration needs to be completed via AQHA in America. To complete this an AQHA Transfer Report signed by the seller is required. The form can be downloaded from and will need to be signed by the seller and returned to AQHA in America with the original Certificate of Registration.

I have a passport, but no signed transfer form, and the name in the passport isn’t the name of the person I bought the horse from, what do I do?

Please contact AQHA UK with the details of the horse so that we can look into this as we may need to contact the previous registered owner to try to get the appropriate paperwork to transfer the passport into your name.

What is the procedure when I buy an American QH what paperwork should the seller give me?

When you buy an American Quarter Horse the seller should give you the horse passport and the relevant signed transfer form to allow the passport to be transferred in to your name. If the horse is also registered with AQHA in America the seller should also give you the original AQHA Certificate of Registration. Alongside this you should be a given an AQHA Transfer Report signed by the seller, this should be sent to AQHA in America alongside the original Certificate of Registration.

What happens if I don’t transfer the AQHA UK passport into my name? Why should I?

It is a legal requirement for the passport to be transferred into a new owners name with 30 days.

Why do I need to send you the passport to transfer it, can’t I just send you a copy?

To enable the passport to be transferred we need to update a section of the original passport so that this is correctly recorded. Therefore we need the original passport to be sent to allow this to be done. As long as the relevant documents are included with the passport the transfer will be completed and the passport returned as soon as possible.