Several alphaherpesviruses breach the basement membrane during mucosal invasion. In the present study, the role of proteases in this process was examined. The serine protease-specific inhibitor AEBSF inhibited penetration of the basement membrane by the porcine alphaherpesvirus pseudorabies virus (PRV) by 88.1% without affecting lateral spread. Inhibitors of aspartic-, cysteine-, and metalloproteases did not inhibit viral penetration of the basement membrane. Further analysis using the Soybean Type I-S trypsin inhibitor for the serine protease subcategory of trypsin-like serine proteases resulted in a 96.9% reduction in plaque depth underneath the basement membrane. These data reveal a role of a trypsin-like serine protease in PRV penetration of the basement membrane.