Refugees fleeing the war in Ukraine can enter Northern Ireland with their pets without having to meet all pet travel rules, Environment Minister Edwin Poots has announced.
Over 10 million Ukrainians have been displaced since the war began.
People in Northern Ireland were said to have made more offers to the Homes for Ukraine scheme than any other UK nation per head of the population.
More than 6,000 people in Northern Ireland have already expressed an interest in offering accommodation to Ukrainian refugees.
Minister Poots said: “The Ukrainian people are facing a horrendous situation with many forced to flee their homes and seek safety elsewhere.
"We have witnessed them carrying their treasured possessions, including their cherished pets, as they flee the war and their homes.
“It is a traumatic experience without the added bureaucracy of travel documents and proof of vaccination for your cat or dog, so I am pleased to announce that they can enter Northern Ireland using an emergency licence.”
He added: “We have strong biosecurity measures in place to protect the public and other animals from diseases which can be brought to Northern Ireland by animals from overseas. To protect these measures alternative arrangements have been put in place.
“This will include meeting the costs of quarantine for pets and the necessary health treatments such as tapeworm or rabies vaccinations to ensure we protect our long held rabies-free status and ensure pets are returned to their owners as quickly as possible."